HF® Exclusive Interview: Kenneth Sullivan Talks Motivation, New Music, and Advice for Aspiring Artists

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Philadelphia’s hip hop scene is full of rappers and producers working hard to make their dreams become reality. One of those talented individuals is rapper/producer Kenneth Sullivan. I recently had the opportunity to ask Kenny some questions about his reason for pursuing a career in music, his latest mixtape Kenny,and advice to aspiring artists.

Check out our interview below.

What inspired you to pursue a career in music?
Money, cash, hoes bro! Sike naw, I started out taking courses in music business to help a friend that was getting into rap. Produced some beats on FL, but they were garbage to most. I figured there must be a disconnected between my ear, and this technical skill I had no clue was so demanding. Not capturing the sound I needed gave me the chip on my shoulder to pursue music; but that chip became a boulder when I lost a close family member and idol. that boulder became the world when I was removed from college. I haven’t looked back

Who would you cite as some of your main musical influences?
Nobody.

How has crowd reception and support been for you so far?
Great, I really enjoy performing. Most of the people that have seen me before know that I enjoy one or two drinks on stage during a performance they’ll so kindly bring them up, and I throw em down. I’ll slowly get more drunk, as will the crowd… and we just have one spiraling night, but that’s all depending on the venue and event of course. I have a lot of different music and styles, some performances call for a more personal engaging energy which is something I also get a rush from; like the first time you told someone your life story, and they understand.

You recently released your self titled mixtape Kenny, what was the process of recording that like?
consuming, personal, and thought provoking. i went back and forth between phases of life in 2 yrs of recording it. The tape takes place between the time I moved from my wild party house on Park Ave, and open a studio called “Parkhouse” with two other engineers and producers, Kayin and Ju, until about February 2014.

What’s your personal favorite track off of Kenny?
I don’t have one. I only wanted my favorite songs from an extensive catalog of music I had to make the tape. I think “When Darkness” is a song that really resonates though, and people tend to really feel it. Ganou is the vocalist on the hook and she really brings out the sense of urgency and passion the song is intended to deliver.

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How would you describe your creative process? Does everything come to you easily or is it a bit hectic?
Arbitrary. If it’s not easy I stop and go ball or something, but I don’t have a creative process for the most part. Just make it hot

I know that you’re also a producer and engineer, so would you say that your knowledge of music as a whole makes putting projects together easier?
I would say no. I have direction and vision but I still have producers and people that work on my music. It’s all about getting that alternate angle to use in your music, rather you choose to use it or not. Being articulate is key in collaboration

In your opinion, how much of a role would you say social media plays in the industry now?
Significant

If you could collaborate with any artist, who would it be?
Diddy. Cuz when it comes down to it he really only gotta do ad-libs

What’s been the most memorable moment of your music career so far?
I’m not really sure I had a lot of memorable moments. I guess getting the keys to Parkhouse, that day I knew it was on. The KENNY mixtape release party was fun, and so was a speed dating/music showcase I threw a while back.

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If you were to go on a nationwide tour, what would be a few key cities that you would want to visit?
Boulder-tree, Detroit-working class people, Houston-women

What would you say has been one of the biggest lessons you’ve learned since being in the industry?
Hold on tight, and screen who you let criticize your work; it may not be criticism at all.

What advice would you give to those who are aspiring to get into the music industry?
Hold on tight, and seriously watch who you let criticize your work.

Be sure to keep up with Kenny on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.