Bringing intelligence back to rap music with rapper Feds

Feds is a 14-year-old rapper who was brought up listening to Bob Dylan, Neil Young, The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix. This may not seem like a big deal, but in the world of Justin Beibers’ and Katy Perrys’, growing up with this kind of music shows that rapper Feds flow and music will have meaning.

We chat to Feds about what it’s like to know what you want to do with your life at a young age, about his upcoming mixtape ‘Open minded’ and how his neighbour of 10 years ended up on murder charges. Margaret Tra writes. 

You're 14 years old, what made you get into music?

I grew up in a household that was always blasting with music. My parents are big fans of 60’s rock, so I listened to a lot of Bob Dylan, Neil Young, the Beatles, and Jimi Hendrix. This really inspired me, and I started writing poetry at 8 years old. I found it as a great way to get my feelings out and be creative at the same time. I soon realised that putting poetry behind an instrumental and adding some rhythm wasn’t that difficult, and thus my rap career was born.

It looks like a lot of rappers are starting out young; do you foresee yourself doing this in the future?

Of course. I consider myself blessed because few people find what they love to do so early in life. I can’t imagine myself doing anything else. I’m on a mission to help bring intelligence back to rap music and peace to the world, and I won’t stop making music until I do.

Are you working on any other projects?

My next mixtape “Open Minded” is scheduled to drop 1st July 2014. It is a reflection on my personality and way of thinking, and I hope it inspires people to think more abstractly and openly. It will be available on Datpiff and Soundcloud.

What is it like doing music whilst still at school?

It can be difficult at times. At first, nobody took me seriously. I mean, who would, it’s not very often you see an extremely young kid that successfully makes music. You’re basically putting a giant red target on your back that says, “Please make fun of me.” I used to get picked on and the biggest mistake I made was letting it get to me. I realised that most of the people that pick on others are the ones with no ambition or drive to succeed, and usually end up going nowhere in life anyway. I have improved a very large amount since I first started, and now have the respect of most of the people in my school. And to be honest, it feels pretty damn good. 

You describe yourself as somewhere between Mac Miller and D.Lector. Are you a big fan of them?

Yes I am, but I try not to let the artists’ I listen to affect the music I make too much. The gap between the styles of D.Lector and Mac Miller is huge, and I feel I fall somewhere in the middle while still being able to maintain originality. It’s getting harder and harder to be original these days. There are so many rappers that want to sound like Eminem, Mac Miller, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and so on. There is a big difference between influence and copying.

You had a neighbour that held on attempted murder charges?

I woke up at 3am. to the flashing lights of a SWAT team truck. Apparently this guy tried to strangle his wife and then tried to make it look like she had hung herself. He seemed perfectly normal until then, too. Scary to think you could be living next to a psycho for 10 years and never know. 

What stimulates your soul?

Nature, music, rainy days, and love.

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