Rising emcee Why Fi has been stringing along some nice releases as of late, and today DC has the privilege of sharing our recent Q&A with him, as well as the premiere of his newest project.
Why Fi ventures into many different spectrum’s of sound on this new joint, and it really pushed the boundaries of hip hop with his unique beat selection. This is the first time we’ve heard him sing more on records, and the end product is very dope.
Enjoy “The Most Whyreless” and read on to check out our interview with the Maryland-bred artist. My favorite tracks are “The Crash” “Hotspot” and “Energy.”
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Yihenew (meaning “This Is It” in Amharic), which was very hard for people to pronounce correctly when I first moved to Wheaton, Maryland. So in my neighborhood I was given the nickname “Y”, for short. Around that time I had already been starting to rap and I was in dire need for a nickname for a while. Then one day after I had gotten really high, my dad asked me to fix the router because the internet was down. And it kind of just clicked after that.
Being “Why Fi”, I created the nickname “The Most Whyreless” as just something cool to call myself. If you were to call yourself “The Best Rapper” or the “Best Lyricist” you’d tend to get scrutinized a lot more for your work because it comes off as arrogant in an already highly competitive game. So I created the concept of being “Whyreless” in order to call myself “The Most” of that (which cant’ be contested because I created it).
Where’d you get the names “Why Fi” and “Whyreless” from?
“The Most Whyreless EP” really goes into depth on what it means to be Whyreless, as well as how I came to the decision to live my life Whyreless. I define Whyreless as the concept of living one’s life free of restrictions and limitations in order to achieve self actualization and ultimate happiness.
One can be “whyreless” by simply cutting ties with conformity, complacency and minimalistic desires in the attempt to want, need, and do better (for oneself as well as for others). This implies that one who is content with mediocracy lives life as a “wired” individual; and by cutting said ties, you’ve taken the first step to becoming whyreless.
Being whyreless is a state of mind in which one chooses to live and aspire for more than that of the status quo; similar to how a satellite roams over the globe.
It’s clear there’s a concept throughout the EP, what can you tell us about that? How does the concept relate to what you’re about as an artist?
The concept directly relates to my personal life; with me struggling to have to go to school, work, dealing with family issues and trying to keep music going which was a long and ongoing frustration I had to endure.
I realized that my situation wasn’t the best, nor the worst, but I simply was in dire need of something better (for myself as well as for my family).
On the EP I talk about my mother being blind, my father working 6 days a week, seeing friends/family of mine going in and out of jail for the same reasons, drugs/turning up often and so on. It was around the beginning of the creation of this project I really started thinking about my own life and decided I needed to make a change and so I did.
Some call it crazy, but I think that my passion for this as well as the strength of my faith will guide me in the right direction (which relates heavily to the project itself).
Now that I’ve moved to San Francisco I’ve been working on setting up shows out in the West Coast. I’m getting a live band together and I’ve started to get in contact with people over on this side as i try to push this project as much as possible.
I’ve also been working a new project while experimenting with new sounds and with music, in general. I don’t have a date in mind for its release but I’ll continue to work on the follow up project in 2015 as well as some other things. Aside from music I’ve been getting into clothing some more and have a cartoon series in the works.
Follow him on Twitter | @WhyFi_