Last week we featured an article about Lil Nick AKA Pacman . We caught up with him and did an in-depth interview.
Kapa187: Tell us a little bit about your background.
Lil Nick :well you see i was born in kobe japan, whilst my mum was an english teacher there, after 3 years of living there i moved to wales in england with my mum and my younger brother. my brother, mother and I went on holiday to zimbabwe alot going back and forth between the uk and zimbabwe, and then we ended up moving to zambia, thats just the brief way of describing my background going in to detail i would be taking up hours of your time. By the age of 6 I was living in zambia with my younger brother and my mother. I was raised in a very good environment in my early years, you know i had school, a lovely home, and lived a very healthy lifestyle. My confidence as a young boy was very low i got bullied alot in my 1st school in zambia, so i ended up switching to another school which was the italian school of lusaka, i stayed there from grade 4 to 7, and then moved to ISL to do my highschool/GCSE’s, i struggled alot in school im not stupid but i wasnt the smartest kid in the class i guess haha so i went to the uk to study my GCSE’s instead at a boarding school, which wasnt helpful for my music as i never had any studio time and it was hard to get a hold of a mic. and now im at college in leicstershire england studying music technology.
Kapa187: You first came on the scene being featured in a video by C.R.I.S.I.S , how did that come about.
Lil Nick :well to be honest with you it was pure luck, as crisis literally lived across the road from me, and i was walking down the road with my friend once and he pulls up in a car and goes, im looking for a young teen for my next music video, and personally at that point i knew who crisis was but i had no clue what he looked like so, i asked him what his rap name was and he told me he was crisis so i was thinking that opportunities like this dont come around everyday you know? crisis is the biggest artist in zambia with no doubt, hes gone to the grammys, won a befta award and i know him personally now because of this and i featured in the video of one of my favourite songs by him, so it was a very good moment for me.
Kapa187:Have you always wanted a career in music , what draws you to it.
Lil Nick :when I was young i “thought” i could sing haha i ended up finding out i was terrible after listening to myself. but i loved music u know and all my friends in my neighbourhood would always be playing the latest rap or hip hop song and always talking about how good the rappers verses were, the punchlines that were put in the song the messages behind all of them, and i always used to wonder how do they think of this stuff? like how does it come into their head? so i started writing lyrics everyday until i could finally come up with a good enough punchlines to impress them and impress others around me. I also remember me at 11 years old telling my mum “i want to be a rapper when im older” haha and she did give me a bit of a weird look but i probably would have done the same if it was my son. so yes from about 11 years old ive always wanted to be a musician.
Kapa187: How does your music differ from other upcoming and established rappers in zambia.
Lil Nick :well you see music is a weird thing, it can only be described in moods and genres, in my music you will always find a message behind the lyrics, i have never ever had a pointless song and i never will have a pointless song. my music is expressing how i feel and my personal thoughts so if you dont like it then listen to someone else, but i do love all the support from the fans have at the moment as they are really giving me the momentum to push forward and do more for them. another thing that does also make my music different to other zambian musician is infact my race, i mean i am a white british zambian rapper, i have a really good blend between both races in zambia as i grew up with a zambian father and all zambians neighbourhood friends.
Kapa187:What does being creative mean to you
Lil Nick :being creative is all about self expression, if it aint you it aint cool. you have to let your mind wonder to strange ideas so that you end up coming up with the next big thing. its how entertainment works, you know if it doesnt work then you try something else.
Kapa187:You started your rise to fame after competing in a cypher battle against So good entertainment artist. First explain to those who dont know wat a cypher is .
Lil Nick :firstly a cypher is where you go to show off a talent weather its singing, dancing, poetry or rapping. cypher is all freestyle when it comes to battling, i mean because any rapper can come write down a couple of good lines for you and then you go ahead and say them so yeah its all freestyle in the cypher battles.
Kapa187:How was that experience ,and did you prepare your raps before hand or was it straight from your head.
Lil Nick :The experience for me, i would literally say that, that battle i had against k.r.y.t.i.c has gone down as one of the best moments of my life. before that battle i quit rap because of discrimination, i couldnt take being teased permanently about being a white african rapper it just took all motivation out of me so i just quit i didnt rap for 7 months. then when i came back from the uk all my friends were telling me nick dont quit your good at what you do like trying to motivate me but i wasnt about to say yes anytime soon. then one weekend we went to the cypher to check out what was going on, next thing i know my name is being called to go into the middle of the circle, it had turned out my friend signed me up and i was blank, and everyone was looking so i just went straight into the middle and just saw the looks on everyones faces when i got in the middle of that circle, my mind went completely blank and all i could think of was how i could get out of being humiliated in public. but then the battle started and i was getting ripped apart until my turn the crowd seemed to like what i was saying and i created quite a buzz that night, there was no winner officially from the battle but my personal point of view i was beaten. there were also rumours that i had done all of that off my phone because i was on it alot but infact i was talking to my girlfriend at the time because i was extremely nervous so she comforted me through that situation.
Kapa187: Your music video for the song ‘i know’ was released recently , what is the song about and what was the concept of the video.
Lil Nick :The song and the video both say the same thing which is: “im here, im there, im everywhere, im taking over, and im gunna tell you just how good i am, and how easy it is for me to do this”
Kapa187: Are you working on an album , if so who have you worked with and who would you like to work with .
Lil Nick :at the moment i do not have the fan base to make an album, and make profits off the album. im currently working on my 3rd mixtape which will definitely be the biggest project that i have done so far. My 1st mixtape was called ITZ TOO EASZY, the second one called PACMAN and this one which i will be announcing the name for the 1st time is called ” Its Still Too Easzy “. on this next mixtape i will definitely have alot more local artist to broaden my fan base and to meet and work with new interesting artists, a couple from the old mixtape will be “2wo 1ne”, rowdogg, urban chaos, ruff kid, white stripe league, yang mas who is the 1st person to ever produce a song by me, one of my very good friends lil Chits (amazing lyricist) and another good friend of mine, shadia Zaher.
Kapa187:How do you handle criticism
Lil Nick :Well i look at it in the case of, i was criticized before which made me stop doing something that i was good at, follow your instinct and if you are thinking of quitting then remember why you started in the 1st place
Kapa187: Is there anything your fans will be surprised to know about you.
Lil Nick :if there was anything they wouldnt know it would be who my idol was as i started rapping without an idol but now i definitely have one besides my mother and father which would be crisis mr swagger, theres nobody in the world right now who deserves fame more than he does because hes worked off every limb in his body to get where he is right now, he went from selling CDs on the street to getting invited to the grammys. so yes if theres anything the fans do not know about me it would be that zambias very own mr swagger is my idol.
Kapa187: Any last words for your fans
Lil Nick :I love every single one of my fans more than i love myself without them nobody would know who i am, please keep supporting me and showing your friends my music i hope i can be the motivation for your day, and the music you dance to at night.
Latest single ‘I Know”