MJ: MJ here with Hip Hop Forum and taking some time away from the studio to chop it up is artist F.L.A.M.E. Da Darkchild. Thank you for taking time out for MJ and Hip Hop Forum Digital Magazine.
F.L.A.M.E.: Thank you for having me. I am definitely honored.
MJ: First things first, for those that might not be familiar please elaborate on the acronym that defines you as an artist. I am always very curious to hear the stories behind how artists create their stage names.
F.L.A.M.E.: Well the name Flame Da Darkchild definitely has a meaning to it. F.L.A.M.E. fire kills you but Fire Lives Around Me every day! You don’t have to burn in hell to feel eternal heat and suffering, it’s around me every day all around my life. Darkchild, no matter how old you are you are a child of God and student a student from the dark looking for light.
MJ: Before we get into the music tell us about growing up and what it was like to move frequently and adjust to DC, NY, FL, and NC.
F.L.A.M.E.: it was cool moving around and also not cool. Meaning I learned to adapt to different styles I was well rounded and diverse and not held in a box. But also I had no foundation, no lifelong friends, and never close to family because I always moved around. I was just being a young knuckle head and family members shifted to the next one when it got hard.
MJ: From the music industry point of view and as an artist, how would you describe the similarities and differences in all the places you called home?
F.L.A.M.E.: Now this is a great question wow. Similarities are great music is great music that will go state to state no matter what but each place does have its own local little unique style. The south is very boppy and harmonizing melodic music locally. Up north there definitely is more of a lyrical old school boom bap heart of the streets. There’s a gritty feel not really a bounce to it more of a spit that real type of feel. So I try to do a little mixture without the harmonizing.
MJ: You tapped into your creative side at a very early age writing stories in school. At what point did stories take a turn to lyrics?
F.L.A.M.E.: When I realized lyricism is a form of storytelling. Plus I always loved music as a kid. I wasn’t a dancer at all I just loved to learn lyrics to songs and being able to sing and rap along to it. I wanted people to do the same to my lyrics. But I found I was more to myself and for myself and as I got older more confident to share
MJ: Tell us what was going on in your life at that moment you knew music was no longer just a hobby.
F.L.A.M.E.: Yes the day I went in to a studio and actually created my first full song. I knew it was nice did that so naturally and to have others really vouch I was like yea this is what I been missing in my life. Ever since then I have been in a studio weekly seriously at least once a week I spent the day in a studio some where every single week, project or not I am there vibing.
MJ: What is it early on in your teenage years that you began to take music and your talent seriously?
F.L.A.M.E.: I didn’t then it was all fun during teenage and early twenties. I was just freestyle writing verses but just verses for me to play with on the block with the homies. My mind was set on other things I wasn’t broke so I was content.
MJ: Talk about that very first track or that very first stage performance as F.L.A.M.E. Da Darkchild.
F.L.A.M.E.: Well those are two totally different situations. My first studio song called “No Wins” produced by Dirk Digga was just fire and made me fall in love with making music at that moment. I loved the process of formatting a song from scratch. Now my first performance, well that was something I had to grow in to. I did it and I got through it. But my stomach and the nerves was so real I mean you let it all out!
MJ: Bring us up to speed and tell us what is hot right now! Take this time to let your fans know about your project “Light From The Darkside” which is produced by Tap. Tell us everything that went into this project especially from the thought to creation of it.
F.L.A.M.E.: Definitely! “Light From The Darkside” is produced by TAP, a very big name out here. We worked on some songs together and I grinded my way up so fast and he really respected my moves I made on my own. TAP knew the camp I was with for years and I was the new dude and surpassed them all. So he came to me and said lets work. “Have u put out a real official EP”, he asked and said let’s make this happen and the rest was history. I guess I finally found that light I was looking for in the dark.
MJ: I pose this question again for those that might not be familiar, talk a little bit about your style and flow as an artist.
F.L.A.M.E.: My style is gritty and I am very strong on lyrics. I definitely paint a picture with it and I take that seriously. I am learning to switch it up and swag out some parts, like some stuff needs a smooth melody to it. Doesn’t have to be rough and rugged all the time, so I had to change that up some.
MJ: What is up next for F.L.A.M.E. Da Darkchild? What can fans expect?
F.L.A.M.E.: My video “Untamed” is dropping this month. Another video to my club banger called “Money” Is dropping around Thanksgiving time. I’m working on my New Year’s EP dropping end of January or the beginning of February. So I am out here working!
MJ: Talk a little about a few of your influences and not just musical influences but influences that truly impacted your life both personally and professionally.
F.L.A.M.E.: Well first off definitely my son. I see him and look at the little me and I know I can’t fail. He depends on me, and I never want him not to experience life. So I do all I can do before I leave this earth so I can set him completely straight in life. Also my grandma, RIP, who raised me. Musically I have to say the LOX all the way. I really was raised off their music.
MJ: Tell us who is in your personal playlist? If MJ does a phone rundown on you what top three will I find?
F.L.A.M.E.: Always LOX, Big Sean, and Chance The Rapper, all the way that is who I’m rocking to right now.
MJ: Please take a moment to let all your fans, followers, and supporters know where to go to find you and how they can get their copy of “Light From The Darkside”.
F.L.A.M.E.: I am on every digital music outlet under Flame Da Darkchild on sound cloud, spinrilla, iTunes, reverb nation, etc… as well as on all social media outlets.
MJ: As we wrap up, is there anything else you would like the world to know about F.L.A.M.E. Da Darkchild?
F.L.A.M.E.: Flame Da darkchild is a true grinder, a real lyricist, a student of the game, and in his own class a well rounded emcee. I give fans content that makes sense and that they can feel and relate to. The streets know me, now I want the arenas to know me.
MJ: Thank you for taking time out for MJ and Hip Hop Forum Digital Magazine, much success to you!
F.L.A.M.E.: thank you, salute to you for this interview. Hip Hop Forum Magazine is the home of real underground Hip Hop!