“South Africa has beared talented fruit for generations.”
This amazing couple is tangible proof of this statement as they are aspiring to astonish and own South Africa’s music industry. Currently, there are no indian artists in the Hip-Hop community however these two are surely the first of their kind and possibily, the future of Hip Hop. KXNG Size TheRapper hailing from Durban, is a young man with a dream of being at the pedestal of music. Being a rapper, composer/producer, lyricist as well as a record label owner can be daunting but there is no stress found in doing something he loves so grately. The Bigger Picture Records is his baby, and he intends to raise this sound with his life companion ‘IceNess’. She is a force to be reckoned with. IceNess is South Africas first indian female artist to penetrate the market in such an explosive manner. Combining her intricate word play and sexy demeanor, this young female is all of the worlds beauty and double its brains. Not only are they the first indian artists, they could also be the very first couple to do music on an international scale. Here is what they have to say . . .
Q:What is your name and what role do you play?
IceNess: “I go by the name, ICENESS. I am a female rapper, lyricist and qualified performing artist signed to The Bigger Picture Records. Currently I am the newest member to the family of 6 amazing artists since 2016. I also have to lay the table and prepare food for them.”
KXNG Size TheRapper: ” I am KXNG Size TheRapper. I am a composer/producer, artist, lyricist and owner of The Bigger Picture Records. I make all the visual material for the crew, as well as making sure IceNess cooks good food too.”.
Q: Is there a reason why you chose that specific stage name?
IceNess: “My style generally is as hard and as cold as Ice. I needed to incorporate that aspect into a name that I will hold onto for the rest of my life. It defines who I am as an artist. ‘Ness’ comes from my mum, ‘Nessy’ is the nickname given to me since birth and is used by my closest friends and family. Suits me? I dig it. ”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “The word ‘Size’ is used daily. ‘Size’ has to be correct in order for anything to fit in. It is a word that could sometimes be a cliche. It describes how large or how small something is. In a deeper perspective, it is a medium used to carry judgment. We are constantly bombarded with negative questions. ‘Do I fit in?’ ‘Am I good Enough?’ Are you what this industry needs? My alias serves to negate the feeling of resentment and to make dust from judgment. Everyone thought I was not good enough. They felt that an Indian rapper is something out of a fairy tale and I am in over my head. They are Sizing me, Sizing the Rapper. Each time you listen, you will judge, you will have opinions and have expectations. I will prove that I am LARGER than the discrimination. My aim is to show my worth when you SIZE The Rapper. The word KING Is before my name, but I replaced the letter ‘I’ with an ‘X’. X marks the spot. A destination. I feel that I am destined to be the KING at what I do, the X is a destination that everyone must reach. We all aspire to be kings and queens, the X, the destination, belongs to everyone”.
Q: Are you part of a record label or group?
KXNG Size TheRapper: “As IceNess and I stated, we are both part of an incredible combination of musicians called The Bigger Picture Records. The Bigger Picture is the hand taking the mask off of the truth and the lighter that burns the wool out of your eyes. We intend to combine truth, mainstream, lyricism and unique perimeters of melody in our music. Together we are 4 Rappers and 2 Incredible singers. SparxX, SPYZO, IceNess and KXNG Size are the 4 horsemen, POUND GANG. Jay Tha’Truth & NQ_The_Brand are South Africa’s Chris Brown and August Alsina relatively. We intend to be the pioneers of music in this country and show the world that different talents can merge together melodiously. Our music consists of R&B, Newschool Hip Hop, Old School Hip Hop and controversial rap. Staying boxed in is not our forte as we strive only to display The Bigger Picture. BPMG. ”
Q: Where did you grow up?
IceNess: “Born and raised in Phoenix unit 5, Durban. Gotta say it is a rough area, and as a lady I am grateful for its notoriety because it strengthened my shell.”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “I was born in Chatsworth, Durban, straight out of unit 5. At the age of 4 years old my family moved up and down South Africa annually. JHB, Nigel, Secunda, Durban and units around Durban have seen my face. I am thankful for the nomadic experience as it helped me resonate with different people wearing different shoes”.
Q: What is your musical background?
IceNess: “I have always loved musical theatre, not only to enjoy watching but also take part in theatrical entertainment. I got my diploma in performing arts, so essentially I’ve been equipped with musical traits. My mom and I would always sing together although I am still tone deaf! During middle grade, I used to keep a lyric book, scribbling down verses from my favorite songs, pausing the cassette tape and jotting it down. I also love poetry because it helped me convey and understand my feelings. My cousins loved HipHop, especially Snoop. Gin and Juice was the first rap track, of so many, to grace my ear at 7-9 years old and from there the passion for rap started. Don’t worry, I’m sure it was the censored version.”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “I was 5 years old wearing a ‘Manning Rangers’ bandanna while holding a microphone toy that was shaped as an ice cream cone. I was meant to lip sync along the words of ‘Maria Maria’ by Carlos Santana & The Product B&G. When I got on stage, the crowd instantly lost their minds as if I made the record myself. From there I felt that this is where I belong, where I am required to live and where my essence needed to reside. I was still quite young to actually build on this performing art however I would jump at the opportunity to do such shows. At ages 9-11 I started performing at the Chatsworth fair, not lip syncing this time. ‘We ain’t going nowhere, Bad Boys For Life’, that song was performed about 10000 times with my original voice covering it via a mic and that is where I found that I actually have a voice and another talent that needed inspection. So I started writing to instrumentals, mostly it was the remaining 1 minute of a typical rap song with no words in it, the ending you know? However, my talent became more lyrical and controversial when I was introduced to Eminem and Tupac. At age 13 I got this weird program called Fruity Loops, now ‘FL Studio’. This crazy piece of tech began to mold my future as a producer/composer and a lyricist. Without any musical knowledge I started making beats, terribly terrible beats, but little did I know that a successful future was imminent if I worked my tail off at perfecting beat construction. Also of concern, as a kid, my mom and I would sing, write poetry and surround ourselves with music. She started this, Size TheRapper”
Q: How do you manage a relationship while being in this industry?
IceNess: “I ain’t gonna lie, it gets a bit difficult sometimes, but only because I make it tough. I am stubborn for the worst, and he is stubborn for the better. I do feel the pressure sometimes but Size is generally easy to work with. Other than that, it is BLESSING! To share a stage with my significant other is surreal. We relate on so many unique levels and we work well together. I believe that it is not just an occupation, its a passion, a flame, a force to be reckoned with and we share a similar spark. The transition from playing ps4 at midday to suddenly deciding to hit the studio is thrilling. Its not difficult to balance a personal and professional relationship with the same person. I am a proudly engaged woman to a good man and I would not have it any other way.”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “It has its pros and cons. Men go mad for her, girls go mad for me. We both understand the repercussions of being public figures. The attention we get is actually pretty easy to deal with because we are both in the same industry. Our hobbies are best spent together because they are one and the same. Music is apart of our lives as much as we are to each others’. Fundamentally, it as always beautiful because we take pride and excitement in doing what we love. Sometimes we have disagreements. It is only natural that order must follow chaos and vice versa, however I keep strict codes in my studio to thin out any form of ripple, codes that we both follow and comprehend. Other than that, she is my woman, I love her to bits and we gonna take over together. This we will not forget.”
Q: What was your most memorable Performance?
IceNess: “The first time I opened up for established artists. TRO to be exact. When I was called to be the opening act I was stunned at the fact that I would be an introduction to famous people and a classic track. For my part, when I held that mic and heard my voice stream, it made me feel some type of way, a feeling of unexplainable . Month end, the club was spilling over with people like someone shook a soda bottle although we did have a VIP section and beverages were on the house. I was treated like a true artist. It was not the materialism and ‘queen’ treatment that made it memorable, however it was someone recognizing my talent enough to ensure THAT treatment, made me feel appreciated. My parents were there, all of them (laughs). They were proud of the fact that I was out there and they supported me, every step of the way. ”
KXNG Size TheRapper: ” I do not have one. I have too many. Really, I cannot pin point a specific time that made me feel special or exempt because they ALL did. Every time I get on a stage, whether it was the 200 kids from an orphanage or the +-2000 people at Eyadini during DJ Professors birthday, every time, I feel at home and at one with the religion that I live by -Music. My crew, ‘POUND GANG’, are the most intelligent and down right crazy bunch that ever came together. Whenever we hit that stage and grip that tool, the microphone, we become the artisans of this industry called HipHop and that feeling cannot be quantified. Every performance with them cannot be quantified. It is really second to a mothers’ Love.”
Q: what are your biggest influences and who are your favorite musicians?
IceNess: “I love Rihanna. Love. Love her! She was the one artist I put over anyone on my playlist. Primary school, I would come home, throw in that CD and just Jam. She was fresh, and I wanted to incorporate her fearless desire to test the waters of different genres, in my music. Secondly, I would have to say Nicki Minaj. She specifically helped me to discover myself as an artist because she wore her sexiness without care for obscure expression. The only female artist to do that before her was Lil Kim and in this male dominated industry, these two artists literally stood out. Her style is different, animated and lyrically she is versatile. Also, she’s stubborn, but I am trying not to learn that because, well, Size. I honestly feel that a producer who is driven, who puts music first, his crew, and dedicates his time and his life into his craft, is more a blessing than an influence. I have learned a lot from Size and gained much knowledge along the way, both in and out of the studio. For real, the way he is able to absorb from different kinds of music, it is phenomenal. I look up to the way he has created his style from grabbing leaves, of different branches, from the same tree, if you know what I mean. ”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “If I were to answer that question, you might run out of ink, paper or even characters! To put it simply, I will give you my top 5 artists and their influence.
No 5. Kendrick Lamar- The man brought alternate Hip Hop into the mainstream and his sound hits your ear in a way that transcends simple music. His sound is more like movie scores, a modern day story teller indeed.
No 4. SPYZO- No one knows him, yet… I met him in the streets of Lamontville and he started freestyling, top of the head. The flow of lyricism was so profound that I thought that he wrote the verse. Until I was proved wrong. In the middle of the verse he started rhyming about my clothes and how cheap my shoes looked. I was hit with a comet. This humble guy spits like a beast. I thought this style of HipHop faded out decades ago, but SPYZO fused old school HipHop with current affairs and agendas. Now he can rap on any beat, trap, you name it. His versatility and old school raw technique, is truly an inspiration. My brother and best friend.
No.3 Tupac- Rap became political. African freedom and movement gained more attention, especially through Hip Hop. Tupac voiced his political opinion via his music, and sometimes did it to beats that you could dance to. The realism in his music became tangible. Only a handful of artists could truly accomplish a narrative personality whereby you could feel the emotions conveyed in his music. I think this trait made him legendary.
No.2 The Game- Similarly to Tupac, Game never felt shy from adding his pain to paper, however, it was more gory. Over the years, Game has always put the hard truth on a record. Gang violence has been a central subject manner for years. Although many people look down on gang violence and block wars, one cannot argue the fact that it has deep roots in Hip Hop. The music of today has changed from violent and gory, to women bashing and discrimination. Men are becoming more feminine, wearing hand bags in music videos. Well that is another topic, however the hood politics have been lost to hiphop nowadays and The Game never compromised with his attire, flow, story and music. I admire that this artist puts himself on a record and does not hide behind facade lifestyle like the other rappers do.
No.1 Eminem- Because… its Eminem.
Q: What do you think of hip hop in South Africa
IceNess: “Only a handful of South African musicians say what they wanna say. As soon as change is brought in or we wanna do something different, we are deemed as ‘wanna bees’ because the vision is limited. A major shout out goes to the small group, including Cassper, AKA and Kwesta. This small group is paving the path for international sounding music. Kwesta fused a cultural kwaito sound with an american touch when he did that feature with MMG’s Wale. We relate to the struggle, and relate to being ignored but why are we being ignored? Nevertheless, shout out to my females, like Nadia Nakai. Do ya thang honey. ”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “Honestly, the public will enjoy american sounding music, however, we are deemed outcasts because of our uniqueness. Quite frankly I’m happy about it. Our A-List rappers are doing things across vast waters and that notion helps the public accept our style/accent because HipHop is changing. Touching on what Iceness has stated, this industry and the public can be very judgmental about your demeanor. I am really diggin’ how kwaito and hip hip are fusing together to create a new genre. Despite how people may look at us, our artists are wearing the flag pretty proudly all over the world and when we reach the top, I am sure the few who judge The Bigger Picture Records will understand that we are doing this like the hip hop God Fathers did.”.
Q Who would you collaborate with?
IceNess: “Either Chris Brown or August Alsina. Those voices touch my soul. Even though BPMG hosts two amazing vocalists with the same comparisons, it would be an honor to work with such melodious voices. Secondly, Cassper Nyovest. He’s just on another level right now man… Naaameen? Third would be Rihanna, on a bad girl rap track, something like what she did on LEMON. Lastly it has to be Kendrick! His ‘DAMN’ album got me trippin’. ”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “Short answer- I wanna do a Cypher with Cassper, Eminem, SparxX my brother, Will Smith, Crooked I and Pitch Black Afro. Don’t ask why, I pictured this image before you even asked.”
Q: What are the main inspirations for the lyrics you write?
IceNess: “My real life experiences allow me to penetrate through walls I never knew existed. When the right beat hits, I get in my zone and transform. I write without a second thought, its almost as if I skipped through multiverses. My ideal fantasy life brings out my inner desires which gives birth to an alter ego called ‘Amy’. She is the nasty girl and everything in between what a woman is restricted from being. I guess it is all about relating situations. Apart from my rare vulgarity, I try my best to relate to the young girls out there that are resorting to rebellion. First hand, I know what it feels like to be caught in self inflicting situations. My mother tried to show me a better method of living and right now I am grateful of the lessons I did not pay attention to. No one will ever be able to walk in the shoes of others but we are all able to relate to each other and make one another grow.”
KXNG Size TheRapper: “I make beats, produce melodies and compositions according to how I feel. When the beat matches my emotion, my pen meets the pad. Feelings often conduct the manner in which the music is expressed. Even if it is ‘turn up’ track, the way I felt has always directed my musical approach. I know that this trait is what gives my music realism and authenticity. Also, my aspiration in owning a record label at the pedestal of Hip Hop & RnB assists in forming great lyrics. A quality goal needs a quality work”
APPLE MUSIC: http://itunes.apple.com/album/id/1360394128