Breeze Embalm is quickly becoming the new voice of social issues in the Hip-hop world. The winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Award, Breeze has been working on numerous projects from the Hip-hop Mecca, that is the Bronx. He is creating music that sheds a light on crucial social issues without shoving down the throats of his listeners.
I was lucky enough to take a few minutes out of his day and discuss his music including his latest mixtape Embalming Fluid.
Describe to us who is Breeze Embalm, what are you about?
Breeze Embalm: I’d say Breeze Embalm is rapper who likes to cover issues that are important to me. But I try to do it in a way that translates well, but doesn’t sound preachy. I try to make it a fun song, to be the moments for those people. I’m not particularly better than anyone.
You are from the Bronx, the birthplace of Hip-Hop, has that had any influence on you as a musician?
Breeze Embalm: Yeah, it definitely has a big influence, not so much in my sound, but just me getting into music to begin with. Going to high school in The Bronx, I was exposed to hip hop because everybody was a rapper–even my teacher. So I wanted to be a rapper because of that. I was raised separate from the hip-hop community. My mom is an actress and I was always at her rehearsals or at one of her shows and never really hung out in the streets. I would listen to Spanish music in the house.
“Coin a Phrase for ChangE” was one of the first tracks I heard from you, and I loved it, how did you come up of the concept for this track?
Breeze Embalm: It’s something you see a lot in New York City. Homeless people are on the train or on the streets. We walk by [them] everyday and just don’t notice it too much because it is so normal. But it is something you have to deal with all the time because they are asking you for money and there is a reason why people are homeless. There is this systemic infrastructure that led people to this position. I felt it was important to touch on the homeless issue that we have here. I can’t even imagine being homeless, I don’t think I am cut out for it. It is a lot to deal with to when you do not have a place to call home.
Tell us a bit about your latest project Embalming Fluid?
Breeze Embalm: Embalming Fluid is my follow up to my first EP and it took me a little while to make this. Three years [to be exact] with a lot of up-and-down matters, but it was all worth it. I really like what came out of it. It is a project, I think has soul. I hope that it resonates with people the same way it resonates with me.
What is your favorite track off of Embalming Fluid?
Breeze Embalm: My favorite to perform would have to be “Coin a Phrase for ChangE” because it is a very energetic beat that I can get loud on. As far as listening, I would have to say “Humble AbodE,” the track featuring Enonymous. It reminds me of when I was in a rap group. So, going back-and-forth with someone was a good feel; it was nostalgic.
What has been your proudest moment of making music?
Breeze Embalm: That’s a tough question for me to think of right now because I was just having a conversation about this today with one of my boys. We were talking about when I won the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and how normally people would be very excited about, but at this point I just have to take in every moment that happens. As of right now I don’t have a proud moment, except for liking the music that I make.
What are some goals you would like to accomplish with your music?
Breeze Embalm: One of main goals is to try to make people think differently, to be more critical and to look at more angles than one would normally do. With my music, it is more so winning the hearts and minds of people. To be a person of political action, which is desperately needed because you have to be active in the movement, in the cause.
What else can we expect out of you later this year and in the coming year?
Breeze Embalm: For now I am trying to get people hooked on to Embalming Fluid. I definitely have some projects that I am creating right now. As for the future I want to do something that means a lot to me, so I want to make a film that is loosely based on my career and life. Kind of like a Will Smith, “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” but a short film version. I’m going to be releasing a lyric video for “Not so baD” with Dessy Hinds from Pro-Era.
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