Music

#PTLInterview: Nigeria-based rapper Phlow, and we guarantee her name is NOT for show

Published in Music | Monday, 19 September 2016

We came across Phlow for the first time when we listened to Phlowetic Justice (through music producer, Teck-Zilla), and were blown away. The beat starts, and after the track was done she more than murdered it! We went to her Soundcloud and went through her catalogue, and this lady is not playing. We had to have an interview, and she thankfully agreed to have one with #PTL:

Which of your songs would you say is your “Magnus Opus” and why?
Thus far, I don't think I've gotten that yet. My greatest piece of work is still lodged up somewhere in me.

90’s hip hop heads will listen to you and vibe. And people today listen to your music and are blown away. Is the way you approach music a deliberate attempt, or is it something that came naturally?
Wow, thanks...this style came so naturally it was almost by accident. I went into music just trying to sound like how I felt. It's when people started to hear my stuff and give feedback that I found out I had 90s sound ingrained. It's a blessing really ‘cause I grew up listening to just about anything.

There’s a notion that hip hop needs saving, and that Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole are at the forefront of the movement. Would you say Hip Hop needs saving?
Personally I think what started and a form of expression, hip hop, has taken some really interesting and frankly weird turns. It’s entertaining, I'll tell you that... but that true sound will win out in the end... 

Your song "Phlowetic Justice" is getting a lot of love (Produced by Teck Zilla), how did you and Teck come up with that?
Phlowetic Justice was an awesome coincidence...On one hand, Teck said he actually had that beat down before we started working together  ... And on the other, poetic justice had always been one of my favorite songs...like I perform that every time I'm at a karaoke bar...my friends are already sick of it [laughs]. So one day I'm at the studio, and he's playing some beats and I hear it…boom! It was a no-brainer, the name play on the title was Teck's idea actually.

In Africa there’s an inescapable influence from America in terms of music, but there’s also blatant and unapologetic style jacking, and some are extremely successful because of it.  Are these “body snatchers” hurting or helping African music?
That's a tricky one, really. African music has come a pretty long way borrowing elements from everywhere and making it what it is today. So in a way, these "body snatchers" sort of give way for the real to come up. On my end, I'd like to think what starts off as imitation finds its way to hone in on its true essence eventually, or at least inspire the people to come up and show ‘em what's real.

Nas is one of your favorite artists. Which Nas song has had the most impact on you as an artist?
Yeah. I'm sure Nas influences every hip hop head out there. Basically every track, especially off Illmatic, is impact worthy, but being a late bloomer in this, it'll have to be One Mic. The story, the build on that track is epic.

What’s the last track you heard that you wish you could have been on?
Hmmm...Kehlani's "Crzy". Funny thing is right before I really started writing and making music ... If I heard a song I wish I was on, I'd hunt down the instrumental and put myself on...I've got loads of self made covers ...so...you never know…

If you could have 3 producers lace all the beats on your album which would they be, and why?
My obvious first choice would be Teck-Zilla. Why? ‘Cause that dude’s a monster! [Laughs] Really, he's a very talented producer and we click on that front.

Timbaland: I have always been amazed his work since I was a kid.

Noah "40" Shebib: The production on Drake’s "Nothing Was the Same" was mind blowing the first time I heard it. He's responsible for most of my favorite Drake tracks. It would be amazing to bless a “40” beat.

You dropped your “Mind, Body, and Phlow” EP, then your banger “Phlowetic Justice”. What’s next up for Phlow?
I'm working on a lot more music with some talented people. You should see a different side of me in my upcoming work. 

Follow Phlow on Twitter (Phlowetry), Soundcloud (Phlowetry), and Instagram (Phlowetry).

Follow Teck Zilla on Twitter (TeckZilla108), Soundcloud (Teck-Zilla), and Instagram (TeckZilla108).