“And as long as I still have the same mind, I’m still going to be here forever”
Do you know that feeling you get when you can sort of sense that something great is about to happen? That burning sensation that can only be extinguished through your curiosity being satisfied? Some call it a sixth sense, instinct, intuition or a spidey sense. Well, whatever your term may be, that feeling still remains the same and that feeling will basically define whether you curb your enthusiasm or not.
Now here’s the thing: in society the complexity of an individual will always confuse many (at most) and frustrate the rest (at most). There are masses who will claim to understand or attempt to simplify a situation that they clearly cannot comprehend. A complex soul has to keep pushing the boundaries of what is expected of them, expected not just from the rest of the world but from themselves too, from the mindset to the overall lifestyle adopted and exercised. Now the responsibility of the reasoning behind that person’s social distinction far outweighs the perks of it all, which ideally makes the ‘complex’ title one for only those who truly appreciate that unique genetic for a greater development. In 2016, however, complexity is either a burden or a blessing, and it’s this paradox that separates the experiments from the pure conduits. A whole sort of ideas and dreams have been put on the table, but to turn an intangible into a tangible thing (naturally of course) is a whole other usage of energy.
Now on the surface, Nasty C just seems to be a young and ambitious soul who really doesn’t care much about the distractions of fame and fortune more than he does about the actual music. Okay, first of all, please don’t get us wrong: he’s one guy who is totally aware of his surroundings, so much so that from the moment you grab his attention, he could probably write a hit record referencing those little seconds of your engagement with him. He is arguably one of the most focused hip hop artists our country has right now, no lie …
Born Free – The Starting Line
“Whenever I look at my old YouTube videos and I try to like reflect on who I really am and if I‘ve changed from then, I see that everything is still the same and the character is still there. Everything is still the same, so I’m still me and now I’m just way better at what I’m doing, which makes me happy because it means I didn’t sell out, I didn’t buy face, have to adopt a niche or stunt. I just carried on being me and it worked.”
Now reflecting on how it all began for this prodigy will probably not give you a clear insight on how it will all conclude for him. From running the Durban scene to the rest of South Africa, Nasty C’s hip hop expedition demanded not only a certain mastered psyche, but also the ability to claim and conquer a predestined situation. What situation, you ask? A limitless situation that only the anointed get to dwell in. Sure, that’s a cheesy way of putting things into perspective, but think about it: how many times has society ironically (at times) laughed at or ridiculed a triumphant non-fictional story? Because realistically a lot of laughter is about taboo topics, which in a way basically communicates something that society is not willing to admit or accept. Pure brilliance …
“We knew that Nasty was going to be the one when we started off with him and Erick. When we heard him initially, we already knew what he was going to be. His work ethic is crazy compared to other artists; he works non-stop.” – Free World Music
Fast-forward to today, after having ultimately received co-signs from basically everyone in the culture and especially the kids, Nasty C has the whole of South Africa in the palm of his hand, because to win, you have to defeat and later control all aspects of your life. However, control has its own request too: freedom, not just in a literal sense, but total artistic freedom.
Still Free – The Dominance
“I think right now where I am in the game, I’ve made a mark to the kids and I’ve made a mark to the grown-ups at the same time. I feel like I don’t need to make a mark anymore; right now all I need to do is deliver good music, because at the end of the day, we can all have characters, we can all have a role to play. Every time I’m on TV, I can switch my superstar on, but if the music is not that good, it doesn’t add up. So for me right now it’s not even about what SA thinks about me or what these other rappers think about me, it’s about what they think about the music.”
From the mixtapes to the singles and features, Nasty C stands out with the deliveries, and we mean really stands out. It’s not every day that one gets to hear an artist who fundamentally owns every beat he jumps on and completely radiates his presence from the moment he breathes his breath on the mic. When asked about whether he is overly chasing that throne, his response is as straightforward as the serious look on his face: “Yeah, but my main focus is not trying to compete with someone else, because I’m just doing me and trying to make the best out of my journey.”
This response immediately then reminds us about those comparisons that had been thrown around during Nasty’s crucial establishment period, and again reminds him of how people still continue to collate him and the others, especially Emtee.
“They still are now comparing me, Emtee and many other different artists, but that’s just how they feel.”
It’s so rare to come across an entity who resonates with the young and old, while still keeping up with his own artistic pace. This is how a true star set on global supremacy functions. This is what happens when a true star lives in a Free World.
“What Free World Music basically represents is trying to find the best talent in SA, and we’re flexing in a way where we put them on the pedestal. It’s all about the artist for us and how we can expand into not just our local market because South Africa is a small fish in a very big pond.” – Free World Music
Free World – The Excellence
With a rap record that has finally brought him to this point in his career, there is still another level of the game Nasty C is transcending to with his Bad Hair debut album, and by the time you read this, SA hip hop would’ve already been gifted with the project. Any artist knows that the first album is a crucial album, and when we ask him to break Bad Hair down for us, this is what he has to say: “Bad Hair for me was like a book; I was just trying to put as much emotion as I can, I wasn’t trying to create a story and I wasn’t trying to create a sound. I just found my own sound and I just felt like I should make the most out of it and tell as many stories as I can and I feel like; try to make as many people relate at the same time but also make music that people can dance to, so that’s the whole concept of Bad Hair.”
Looking at the outcomes that the past years have brought for the prodigy, from the accolades leading up to that infamous Mabala Noise relationship, this made us question how his whole affiliation with Free World Music came into play in the first place.
“Free World Music is something that’s been around for years; it’s just something that started with me and my manager from way back in Durban. It was just a small clique, so what it is today, we’re still the same people (less people now actually because they say less is more), and we’re still together, still the same boys, same motive, same drive, same goal, same ambition and everything.”
“If you don’t believe that you are number one, then get out the game. Mabala Noise share the same vision and bear in mind that whatever decision is made is good for the artist as well as the management side. So you can’t deny certain things of what the deal represented, but the most important thing is that Mabala Noise want to take Nasty to number one.”
In closing, we (the people) can only imagine how far Nasty C is taking this, because as far as we’re concerned, you can never really know where Nasty C is going until he gets there. The young star is always growing, always learning and always evolving. Although the uncertainty of his next moves still remains, one thing you can trust is that he will always do exactly what he wants to do.
“I don’t know, I get bored quickly, that’s the thing, that’s the only thing that actually worries me, other than that I’ll be here forever and as long as I still have the same mind, I’m still going to be here forever.”