We Call Him 55

Canadian recording artist and visual genius, wa55up, is one of the most slept on creatives in the world. His art is beyond breath-taking and is completely hand drawn. His music fuses genres from all over the spectrum while creating his own Daft Punk meets B.B. King sound. He is responsible for the design of this very website alongside L1FEGFX (graphic brand of B-L1FE) and he also has his own visual brand known as wa55up media solutions. He works for several record labels as a consultant and scout. He is also the Creative Director of SupportArt which is one of four leadership positions. Oh, and if we didnt already mention it he makes terrific music. Since he never seems to put on for himself, we did a Q&A with our Creative Director to shine some light on his many talents and to show him off to the world as he should be. View the Q&A with wa55up below.

Q: When did you start realizing your illustration skills and their value?

A: "Well, I've always took it seriously, but I started realizing the value of my work when people kept coming to me to try and get me to draw stuff for their projects back when I was in school. Even while I was in art school, I had classmates coming to me to draw shit for them because they couldnt do it themselves sometimes."

Q: Which piece gave you the most challenges and which piece was the most fun from start to finish?

A: "Thinking about it, I've never had a challenging piece... just impossible clients. The callenge is trying to do work for someone who is never satisfied with what you do, or someone that doesnt know what they want so they keep jumping between ideas without ever giving a completed path for me to follow. Thats the reason I left freelance design work behind. Truthfully, all of them are fun. I love and live to create."

Q: What drives your music: production and vocal wise?

A: "Compulsion. I've been drawing and drumming on stuff my entire life. Everything I do at this point is kind of an extension of that. Drawing became animation and video editing. Drumming on tables became drum corp and piano lessons, which lead to music production. If I could quit I would've. However, I cant or I will be miserable. I think its my purpose for existing because Im truly miserable if I do stop."

Q: What message would you say your art and music carries?

A: "Hopefully, its just dope shit people can relate to, but how dope my work is isnt something for me to decide. That is something for the people who fuck with it to decide."

Q: How did it feel when you first became a member of SA?

A: "Dope. I've tried in the past to work with a lot of people and I didnt know what to expect at first. Here, we run shit real tight with no nonsense. Im easily confused so that is key."

Q: Word is you are also working for a few other labels, can you elaborate at all on that?

A: "Well Im working with onyxisloud, which is a startup music tech group. We are working on a way to make studios open source and distributed with a mix of hardware and software to make things easier for artists who are trying to transition from casual to professional. Starting to produce for quite a few new upcoming artists this year as a way to develop products that would be both well priced and easily utilized for artists who dont necessarily know the tech side of things. For example, if you're a singer with no producers, we would put you in touch with a producer for a subscription fee. We would also put you in contact with studios and other needs or outlets you require. Its more of a network than a record label at this point, but there are big things coming."

Q: What music can we be expecting form you personally?

A: "Im working on my next album. I want to release that pretty soon. There is no date yet, but I have tracks produced for it. Just got to do the vocals and mixes for some of them. The next album is going to be called 'Neon Soul'."

Q: Any artists joining you on that project, and will you be doing all the engineering like you did on the album 'Home Alone' by kevspeakstruth?

A: "On this one, its all me just like 'Led Belly', but I am about to start doing remixes of my tracks from that first album that I will have other artists feature on. I think thats what Im going to keep doing, solo albums and them remixes with featuring artists. When it comes to engineering the answer is yes. My sound is unique and different, and I feel I have the best ear for what I am trying to accomplish. Honestly, I would feel bad about givng my projects to someone else to mix. I think I do a minimum of 70 tracks on every song."

Q: How would you say the rest of the SA roster is in terms of talent?

A: "The rest of the roster is fire. Im actually trying to free myself up for more collabs this year because there is some shit that just needs to happen with fellow alum."

Q: Anything you would like to add or that we missed before we conclude your Q&A with your brand SupportArt?

A: "Im awful at interviews especially this part. So if you want to see more of work, just go to my website."


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