Exclusive Interview with Keesh Hawkz
SFND MAG: Keesh!!! What’s good? We are so excited about this interview. Very glad to make this happen. How are you?
KEESH HAWKZ: What up! I’m good! Thank y’all for having me!
SFND MAG: Now do you prefer just Keesh or Keesh Hawkz?
KEESH HAWKZ: Either or, I’ll answer to both. [LAUGHS]
SFND MAG: Tell us a little about yourself! Where you from and how long you been rapping?
KEESH HAWKZ: I’m from East Orange, New Jersey. Been rapping since I was 16.
SFND MAG: When we first heard you spit, we were like Yoooo! She is crazy dope! You are definitely a lyricist. Loving your East coast swagger and demeanor. At what age did you first start taking your craft seriously?
KEESH HAWKZ: Awww Man! I really appreciate that. I most definitely LOVE the art of Hip Hop. I started taking my music seriously when I was 23.
SFND MAG: We listen to many of the verses you spit on your IG posts and we have been wondering, who are some of the artists that you are most influenced by? Your cadence on some of you verses is seemingly reminiscent of Pac but we would like to know your influences.
KEESH HAWKZ: Yooo!!! That’s Dope AF that you picked up on that! PAC is without a doubt my favorite Rapper of all time. He’s always spoke to me the most more than any other artist I’ve ever heard. I like to pay homage at times. I’m also influenced by Kendrick, J Cole, Lauryn Hill and many others.
SFND MAG: So, hip-hop seems like it has been headed in a much better direction in 2020 than where it was 4 or 5 years ago. What is your perspective on the current state of hip-hop and where do you fit in that equation. As an up and coming independent artist, what is Keesh Hawks bringing to the table?
KEESH HAWKZ: My perspective on Hip Hops current state is Hopeful and full of excitement. It’s a lot of ladies getting to it. Doing their thing. I’m ready to be a part of that! I think I fit in perfectly or rather stand out because I (write) rap about reality and things that real people can relate to and put my own little spin on it. We need Love and Good Energy in the world. Understand that every single person has a story. I’m telling mine with the hopes that I’m helping others too. That’s what I’m bringing.
SFND MAG: Let’s switch it up a little and talk about your music. You recently released Hummer Flow in 2019! The record is dope and definitely goes hard. Tell us a little about this record and how it came into existence.
KEESH HAWKZ: Word! Thank you! My Boy Mista Muthafuckin Splurge brought me in on that joint. It was produced by The Blurry Boys. Splurge had his verse and the hook down already. I came in and wrote my verse soon as I heard his part and next thing you know we laid it and realized we had a bop!
SFND MAG: Purple’s the Laaaaaabel... Y’all stay repping! Tell us about your team on Purple Label.
KEESH HAWKZ: It’s Purple Label Baby! Hell yea, that’s the team. So to sum it up Purple represents Royalty, meaning we hold ourselves to the highest standard. We’re a group of multi talented artists / creatives that all have completely different styles, sounds, and overall so dope in our very own right. That’s Family.
SFND MAG: Speaking of purple. We cannot help but notice that you are a “smoker ... smoker” (in my HaHa Davis voice) LAUGHS. You spark one on 90% of your IG posts and you definitely create this crazy dope vibe that just makes a person want to light up whether they smoke or not! [LAUGHS] Is putting one in the air a vital part of your creative process?
KEESH HAWKZ: [LAUGHS] Ayooooo my friends Legit call me the female Wiz Khalifa. I’m known to out smoke many men. [LAUGHS] But of course! My creative process consists of me mentally escaping while simultaneously getting in tune with myself. Just settling into me, like what I feel/ think. How I want to get it out and most importantly why? So, Yes to answer your question! #stonershit
SFND MAG: Ummm… so if you had to give us a recommendation on Keesh’s Top three strands, what would you recommend?
KEESH HAWKZ: Damn only three right? Easy! I LOVE LOVE LOVE: Blue Dream; Dream Queen; Strawberry Runtz.
SFND MAG: So you also released a record last year called Treehuggers Unite. That joint is dope as well. Obviously, we know the inspiration behind the record. How have the treehuggers responded to the song so far?
KEESH HAWKZ: I see what you did there LOL! Thanks Homie! They fuckin wit it! TreeHuggers are Lovers of Nature and Lovers By nature. So naturally, they’re going to love a record that promotes peace, love, and unity. I’m a hippie at heart and so are most TreeHuggers. (I’ve performed that song at many 4/20 events.
SFND MAG: You spit quite a few verses regularly on social media but we have only noticed a few songs available on Spotify... Where can we hear more music from you? Please tell me we can expect a full-length album from you sometime soon? If so what is the name of the project and the anticipated release date?
KEESH HAWKZ: On iTunes, YouTube, SoundCloud, etc. I just released my new single “$um It Up” Out Now On all music streaming platforms! Yes, Yes and Yessss! I’m dropping my long-awaited Ep titled “WildChild The Ep” Very, Very soon. (I know it’s overdue) So please stay tuned and thank you for your patience with me. The project is done, set to drop in April / May, and most definitely will be well worth the wait!
SFND MAG: From what we have heard thus far, you have had some amazing production as well. Who are some of the producers you have worked with thus far and who would you like to work with in the future?
KEESH HAWKZ: The late Great DJ Calzz (Long Live Dj Calzz) my Boy Teezy from out Atlanta. I get a lot of fire beats from online producers too. Damn sure would love to work with the legend Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliot/ Wondagurl / Dj Khaled/ London/ Murda / Zaytoven just to name a few.
SFND MAG: If you had to describe your style in on word, what would it be?
KEESH HAWKZ: Eloquent.
SFND MAG: Has it been difficult to make your mark as a female M.C. in New Jersey? If so... why do you think that is? If not... then what has set you apart from the rest?
KEESH HAWKZ: It has been somewhat difficult mainly because the industry is sooooo overly saturated with mediocre Rap. It’s hard for the fans to focus. But when people get a second to listen, they discover that they Love it or at the very least respect it. Real shit.
SFND MAG: How can your new fans reach you on social media?
KEESH HAWKZ: Technically, I do have Twitter; IG; Snapchat (debating getting TikTok) but I spend the Majority of my social media on IG. I may get better with this but as of right now. Get with me on IG.
SFND MAG: Before you go, could you name another artist that you think is “So FN Dope” and tell us why?
KEESH HAWKZ: Bless McFly because 1) He’s fire AF (his sound is so different) and 2.) He’s my label mate and just an ill ass person / artist. Interview him and see for yourself.
SFND MAG: Once again, thank you so much Keesh for interviewing with us. It has been a pleasure. We definitely wish you much continued success and look forward to seeing you doing some big things in the near future.