Amongst the realest and straight up men I know… Fisky. 37 from South London, he has a story to tell and through his poetry and rapping, over the years he has let people into his world. Today, you get a peep into the land of Fisky also…
Mate! Finally got you featured! Good timing too as you have had a productive and busy weekend in the sun – rounding off with your last Mind Over Matter event in Balham. Sad times but bigger things in store right?
What age did you start exploring poetry and music?
I’ve been writing ever since I was able to. It was the only thing I was ever any good at. I had my first poem published at 12 years old and got into Hip Hop around 15 / 16. I never really wrote anything worthwhile rap wise until I was about 24 due to, well, life.
Published at 12! Legend! Why do you do the style of music / poetry that you do?
I was introduced to Hip Hop around the age of 15 when a friend gave me a mixtape. Before that I was going to raves in abandoned trains and listening to jungle, trance and hardcore music, because that’s all I was really aware of. As soon as I heard the mixtape I fell in love with Hip Hop and couldn’t get enough of it. I love the story telling aspect, how you can play around with words, metaphors and flow patterns. The honest expression that comes with it is what really engaged me at the time though.
I felt that way when I discovered Neo-Soul. It had that nice blend of rnb, soul and poetic flows and it just made sense to me.
At 15, I had just lost my Mum to cancer and between then and 24 a lot of other people close to me passed away. Growing up in the whole ‘man up’ ‘have a beer’ culture I never felt comfortable talking about it. Mental Health services in the 90’s were not what they are today and I felt let down every time I tried to talk to someone. I turned to alcohol and drugs for a long time to numb myself so I didn’t have to feel the sadness, confusion and anger, just for a short time.
The only positive way I could express myself was though Hip Hop which provided an escape where I could listen to peoples stories. I related to the raw honesty, frustration and anger that came with Hip Hop, also the comedy and conscious side of it. It opened up a new world of possibilities when I was lost and gave me an outlet to write down my thoughts, process the sadness and try to make sense of the chaos engulfing me both internally and externally on a daily basis.
You’ve been through a lot man, my condolences regarding your loved ones also. It is deep to know that music was your comfort and voice in all of this… I’m pretty sure it has been the case for many people. So to know you have embarked upon researching and supporting Mental Health services and put on events that create a safe space for expression is just the most humbling thing to witness. Big respect to you!
What or who inspires you?
Life. I started writing to get things off my chest that I didn’t know how to in any other way. A lot of my music and poetry is quite personal and comes from my life and experiences. When something happens I’m not sure how to deal with or makes me sad, my first reaction is to write about it. It used to be to pick up a bottle but I’ve knocked that on the head now. Ten months and counting!
Relatable! Poetry was my “diary” also… and a massive well done on your sobriety!
Besides that, I grew up listening to mainly underground UK rappers like Chester P, Blak Twang, London Posse, Rodney P, MC D and Skinnyman. Also, American artists like Gravediggaz, Beatnuts, Tupac, Biggie, Snoop, Dre and loads of others from the 90’s. The Golden Era 🙂
How did you come up with your artist name and what does it stand for?
Fisky is just my second name with a ‘y’ on the end. It’s been my nickname for as long as I can remember. Creative, I know! I tried to come up with a ‘rap name’ but couldn’t think of anything that didn’t make me cringe so I just stuck with Fisky.
Glad ya did! To the point and it’s (literally) who you are! Simple as that!
List of all your previous work right up to press that new supporters may not yet be aware of;
- April 2014 – ‘Ten Years’ (First album)https://fisky.bandcamp.com/album/ten-years-album
• November 2014 – No Time For Goodbyes ft. Christen kwame (Single/Remix EP)
Official Music Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c52UjkmwswQ
• October 2015 – Recover Me ft. Andrew Gummer
• February 2018 – 20 Years ft. C.W Jones
Yeah, you’ve been busy man lol love that!
Which project are you most proud of and why?
“No Time For Goodbyes” is my most ‘successful’ track in terms of sales and exposure but I’m most proud of the album “Ten Years”. It represents a defining ten year period of my life that made me who I am today. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing, I’m not sure, but it’s been described as ‘listening to ten years of someones diary’ and ‘so honest it’s almost painful’, which is kind of why I started writing in the first place. If you listen to the album, “No Time For Goodbyes”, “Recover Me” and “20 Years” in order, it’s literally a timeline of my life and the things I’ve been through to get to where I am today.
That’s hard! You’ve captured years of memories and experiences and turned it into art! I definitely respect it, highly!
Any future projects in mind?
I’m currently working on my second album which I’m hoping to release in November this year. It will pick up where “20 Years” left off and it’s kind of about accepting the things I can’t change, understanding what led to the 20 years of chaos and moving forward. It hasn’t got a title yet. The title usually comes to me during the writing process at some point, hopefully. I’m working with two of my favourite producers ‘Charles Edison’ (of Delusionists) and ‘Riddle’, a Manchester based producer. There’s also some features from artists I’ve been a fan of for years which I’m really excited about!
Good to hear you have no plans to slow down! Looking forward to the new project! Following on from that, what have you done to promote your craft? Drop a list of radio shows / podcasts / big events you have been part of…
My music has been featured on BBC Radio 6, Itch FM and a few other stations and I’ve been interviewed on Fubar Radio, Kane FM, London Live TV and Wandsworth Radio.
You can listen to some of the interviews here: https://soundcloud.com/mindmatterldn
I’ve recently performed as a feature act at ‘Erb ‘n’ Word’ and ‘Wordplay’, and at various open mic nights such as; Spoken Word Sundays, Flo Vortex, Word on the Street, Chocolate Poetry Club and Spoken Word London.
I have a few bookings coming up that haven’t been announced yet but you can keep up to date on my social media pages.
Dope! Any other talents that people may know you for?
I run an event called ‘Mind Over Matter’ where we discuss mental health through Spoken Word Poetry and Hip Hop. I founded Mind Over Matter after becoming sober last June after a 20 year battle with depression and addiction. I wanted to give people a platform I never had to express themselves in a safe environment. It’s been going really well and people really seem to have connected with it.
Past performers include: Desree, BananaSharma, Craft D, Oracy, Charles Edison, Delusionists, Jaz Kahina, Holly Flo Lightly, Poetcurious, Tyskie, Sophie Macaroni, Feven Em, I AM SHAHEED, Shay D, Rae Levine, TrueMendous, Bobbie Johnson, Shareefa Energy, Amani Saeed, Greg Blackman, Salma El-Wardany and C.W Jones.
Since our first event last year we have collaborated on events with Tedx, The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation and we were kindly given a stage at The Grey Dog Festival, a new charity focused on putting young peoples mental health centre stage.
Tavistock and Portman – https://www.instagram/mindmatterldn
The Grey Dog – https://www.thegreydog.org
Having taken part in the open mic at your event last year, I can safely say it is definitely a dope energy, warm crowd and safe haven for expression and talent. I’d encourage more people to attend – whether it is to perform or to be entertained… or even network!
Tell us a random or fun fact about you…
Colin Jackson (the athlete) picked me out of a crowd at the Olympics when I was a kid and gave me the number off his back and said ‘you can do it too’. He was wrong as I went a very different path but it was nice to be noticed and believed in.
I don’t think he was wrong Fisky… you might not be an athlete but you are clearly putting your mind and efforts into something worthwhile and important. That’s the bigger picture… and you should be proud of yourself mate!
Any positive affirmations you personally live by or just something you wish to express to your supporters / anyone reading?
Be yourself and do what you love. No one else can do what you do because they aren’t you. We’re all on our own paths. If you want to do something, just do it. Take a risk. Don’t listen to what other people say and don’t let people tell you you can’t do something. They can’t see what’s in your heart and the reasons you do what you do. Life is too short to be unhappy. Be kind to people. We never know what someone has been through or might be going through. A kind word or smile can brighten someones day.
Quite possibly the best affirmation so far! It definitely hit home with me… thanks for being you and blessing The Hook Up with your wisdom and energy!
Our #TalentTuesdays Star everyone!
Follow Fisky here:
Insta / Twitter: @fiskyldn / @mindmatterldn