interview: biracial rapper kyle doesn’t give a fuck about rapper stereotypes

May 5, 2015

The line in front of SOBs is growing longer and the chatter amongst the concert goers is getting increasingly louder as I head towards the front door of the venue. As I walk inside, 21-year old rapper KYLE is standing in front of a line of lucky VIP fans who are waiting anxiously for their meet-and-greet with the California born and bred emcee. It’s a scene that I’m actually familiar with, having seen it a week before at KYLE’s show in Philly – the kick-off show for his first ever national headlining tour, KYLE’s King Wavy Tour. Before that night I had never heard of him, but by the end of the evening I was completely convinced that this kid was undoubtedly working his way towards a top spot in the music world. KYLE’s sound is often compared to that of Drake’s – but I maintain that that’s only because KYLE is a light-skinned rapper with a handsome face and a sound that doesn’t necessarily fit the mainstream rapper stereotype.

By Blaire Monroe, AFROPUNK Contributor

During the meet-and-greet KYLE is embracing crying fans and making them laugh with light-hearted jokes and a complimentary flick with him in front of his infamous yellow surfboard. The surfboard comes into play again later towards the end of KYLE’s set when he quite literally surfs on it overtop of an ecstatic crowd. You honestly have to see it to believe it.
After the meet-and-greet we head downstairs so that KYLE can get a haircut from his personal tour barber, Smalls. Shortly after, I’m sitting on a couch surrounded by KYLE’s super duper crew: Brick (DJ, photographer, artist, self-proclaimed mccgriddle), Nolan (manager), Maxx (tour photographer) and Jesus (our lord and savior).

KYLE sits down next to me and we immediately dive into a sea of topics. We start off on lighter subjects, discussing how Hip Hop became a part of his life. But as we get more comfortable in our conversation, I’m curious to know about KYLE’s experience as a biracial entertainer. As a biracial woman who often felt forced into playing roles that other people expected me to play when I was younger, I can only imagine what kind of a pressure a mixed rapper on the rise might face.

See what KYLE has to say about biracial conflicts, rapper stereotypes, and being a star on the come-up below:

*Video shot and edited by Marv Mack