Words by SCOTT WRIGHT
This week I spoke with Fraksha, one of my favourite rappers coming out of Melbourne. He’s put in some serious work over the years and continues to inspire by collaborating with Wordplay favourites, including Alex Jones and Lgeez, as well as himself putting out his own tracks constantly.
Can you give me a short bio of yourself?
I’ve been MC’ing for close to 20 years. I wouldn’t really box myself into one genre really, but I’ve done all sorts of genres from hip-hop to jungle to drumstep to dubstep to grime to dancehall and everything in between. However, I guess most people will associate me with grime. I’ve been in two-man crews – initially Nine High where we released two mix-tapes and an album, and Smash Brothers which has been more of a live group with the odd single release here and there. As a solo MC, I’ve released two mixtapes and an album. I also run the 50/50 grime events and have released three ‘GrimeDownUnder’ mix-tapes through them, covering the grime scene in Australia.
What do you think is the best track you’ve ever dropped and why?
It has to be M-Phazes feat Nine High – That’s What We On – such a banger of a tune and was part of a very successful album. It had some incredible responses over the years dropping this. Creepin with Brinks & Diem, it’s been a huge tune for me wherever I go in the country. Together with Scotty Hinds and Alex Jones has had a massive response online and I’m really happy with how that one came out. It was something I had in mind for a long time and it’s exactly how I wanted it to be right down to the [music] clip.
What are you working on at the moment?
No projects in mind right now. Just doping couple bits and pieces with different producers – some Smash Brothers stuff, some solo stuff, a release with the Melbourne producer Juve is coming which is gonna be real sick. And we recently did a Smash Brothers track with Wiley produced by Able that I obviously can’t wait to drop!
Who are you collaborating with next?
I got a few things I have committed to or lined up myself, but to be honest I’m trying to do less moving forward as it takes me away from doing my own stuff, really. I also prefer not to talk up too much until it’s all locked in concrete.
If you could drop one track with any artist of your choice, who would it be? Why?
I don’t really have any kind of list like that. Normally you would just say your favourite artists, but just because they’re my favourites doesn’t necessarily mean that we’d work together on a track. I already work with or have worked with a lot of the people I rate in Australia, but I think a tune with Skinnyman or Durrty Goodz would make me pretty happy.
What got you into rap? Who were your major influences?
Mobb Deep, Wu Tang and that East Coast kind of stuff, but it wasn’t until I heard people like Skinnyman, Supa T, Rodney P, Fallacy and all those guys that I gave any thought, really, to trying to [rap] myself. Hearing my own or similar accent on a track was a game changer!
What is one thing you would most like to tell your fans?
I hate the word fans to be honest, I prefer supporters and I’d just say thank you for allowing me to have the fun I’ve had over so many years. I’m not a big artist or nothing – this shit has never paid well, but I knew that was going be the case when I decided to go down the route I’d done. My payment is hearing the support, seeing the response at shows or when I drop a track or video. That kind of thing. It might sound a bit cheesy, but it is what it is.
What are your major goals this year?
I would like to make sure I get 50/50 interstate a few times if possible, it’s such a mad event and nothing like it in the country hence so many people flying in for it from other parts of the country. Aside from that, I’m probably going to have a quiet year individually. I’m actively turning down gigs and work right now. I’ve not had a break in the whole time I’ve been doing this so I want to dedicate some time to other things in my life for a piece. I say that now but who knows how I’ll feel next month or the month after!
Name some of your favourite artists / tracks at the moment. What are some of the tracks on your top 10 currently?
At the moment I have J-Spades More Money More Pagans mixtape on rotation, as well as a collection of Casisdead tunes. I’m always listening to Vybz Kartel, Trim, and Abra Cadabra’s tunes War and The Roads I’m always playing.
If you could play at any venue what would it be?
I don’t really have any dream venues or nothing like that, but it would be mad to get over to do some festivals or shows in New Zealand again, though.
Be on the look out for new stuff from Fraksha!