Tapping into the young talent’s brain with a Q&A.
At twenty-one, Young Tapz is one of New Zealand’s most promising young hip-hop talents. With a resumé that already includes having worked with artists like A$AP Ferg and performing a sold out show in Russia, Young Tapz rightfully exudes confidence and optimism for what’s to come in his career. We checked in with Young Tapz, whose Sydney performance we can’t wait to see on November 12th.
Young Tapz, was that a nickname of yours before you started making music?
Nah, Young Tapz wasn’t but Tapz was. I added the Young to the name when I became inspired by hip hop culture. It was my way of showing homage to the genre of music that drove me to start music. It was very different from what I was raised listening to, that’s why I connected with it, because we shared that in common, being different.
Did your inspiration for creating music start at home with what you parents were playing?
Not really. What they listened to didn’t inspire me to start music, but it inspires me more-so now. I grew up in Zimbabwe where my dad was crazy about country and folk music, Don Williams was his favourite. He also listened to a lot of Lionel Richie, a lot… And my mum always sung religious Zimbabwean songs. I remember a lot of Michael Jackson, you couldn’t escape him, he was my favourite. I find myself referencing from those genres and artists a lot, especially Michael Jackson, the way he could entertain the masses just by moving an arm is fucken crazy.
Do you have a dream venue to perform at either at home or abroad?
I don’t know, I’ve never really thought about it.
You seem very well-travelled for your age, how do you think moving around and experiencing different cultures shaped who are today? How has it influenced you as an artist?
I moved around as a kid, my family would travel all around Zimbabwe, South Africa, and countries near by. It was cool because I got to see and experience different ways that people live, important knowledge for a young growing boy. The biggest move was from Zimbabwe to New Zealand, it amplified how different I am. I was the only black kid at my school, and in the neighbourhood I lived, plus I couldn’t really speak english. And that shaped me and still does, to embrace and love people as they are.
You were on tour with Jeremih, what was that like?
It was cool.
How would you describe the current music scene in New Zealand?
There’s a lot of talent in New Zealand, and Australia. The internet has brought light on the music on this side of the world, I hope it gets the shine it deserves.
You could say you have an advantage in a way being from Zimbabwe and New Zealand, do you think that puts you in a position to have a solid fan base from both places?
It’s an important part of my story and I want to use my journey to bring people closer together; whether they’re from Zimbabwe, New Zealand, Russia, America or Shanghai. My eyes look at the world as a whole, I think my love for all people will speak beyond the borders of just those two places.
What artists are you currently listening to?
Lauryn Hill, Travis Scott and Mary Guthier
What are you most looking forward to at MADE Sydney?
Meeting the designers at the forefront of fashion on this side of the world. Hopefully I meet potential fashion collaborators who understand my vision.
Any artists or friends you want to shout out that we should be on the lookout for in the future?
Do you have anything your currently working on?
I’m releasing some new music soon, so I’m working on finishing that. I’m excited about it, it’s been a year since I put out Killa.