HDBeenDope is a rapper that likes to use his music as a form of therapy and an outlet to make connections with others. He is one of many artists to make it out of Brooklyn, New York but has his own individual sound and style that separates him from his peers. He uses storytelling along with honest lyrics to draw the attention of those listening while also connecting with his audience. In this interview, we discussed personal style, music, individuality and much more. Read below.
Since you are a New York native, how do you find your own style and sound?
Finding individual sound...I think you have to play like other people before you learn to play for yourself; meaning it’s okay to be inspired by other artists as you are finding your own voice.
When did you figure out music was what you wanted to do as a career?
I was thinking about it when I was 9. I started out listening to a bunch of 50 cent mixtapes. It wasn't until I was 12 that I chose rap as my career path.
Since you mentioned 50 Cent, What’s your favorite 50 Cent song?
“Many Men” for sure.
What advice would you give to other young creatives that are trying to get into rap at a young age?
The biggest thing that I tell anyone that is trying to pursue any kind of creative passion is to just do it. I think everything should feel fun, especially when you are first starting. There is so much to learn and you aren’t doing it for any monetary gain. So everyday just get up and do it. I think by going down that path, you are going to be further along. I think it is important to analyze what you are doing as well. Without analysis you can never fix anything. So Work, analyze.
From doing a little more research on you, it seems like individuality is very important to you. How do you maintain that in such a mainstream industry where everyone is doing the same thing?
It goes back to having your own style. I think through time you kind of start to understand yourself. You can like certain things but then you take a step back and think “How does that look on me? Like what is my version of that?” Rather than saying okay cool, I want that. That’s my filter with everything because there is certain stuff that people do where it’s like if I do that...it’s not going to look right for me.
How would you describe your own personal style clothing wise?
Generally, i’m pretty relaxed. I risk a lot and I wear a lot of my own clothes. I like stuff that’s comfortable.
Speaking on personal style, I saw on your IG that you own a pair of sketchter and that’s not too common. So tell me what’s your favorite sneaker brand?
I don’t really have a brand that I like. I just have a lot of shoes that I like but some of my favorite sneakers are Air Max ‘95s, Sketchers, Air Jordan 3,4,6,and 7.
How would you describe your own individual sound in one word?
Honest. That’s the biggest thing that I take from my music. Even the people that are around me, when they hear certain songs it’s like “oh wow that was really honest.” I feel like the sound can be on any type of beat but the honesty stays true throughout every song.
How was having your song featured in a campaign for the New York Knicks?
That was super random. I just woke up to it one day. I think stuff like that is fire. They kind of just got a hold of the song and that happend. It was a cool moment. It was definitely dope.
What can we expect in the next year?
You can expect a lot of shows. I think that’s my favorite part of all of this is to just get on stage. I have a new project that is going to drop as well for this next year.
Is there anything else that you want readers to know about you?
Honesty. That’s the most important part about the music. I tell my story in hopes that someone else can connect to it. First and foremost it is my therapy, I think it’s always dope when people can connect to it. When someone else tells me they connected it’s like we now have something in common. That’s where the honesty comes in.
Check out HDBeenDope’s latest video for “20K” from his upcoming album, below: