Orange County rapper and Placentia native Osi Mac was one of the very few hip-hop artists selected to perform at the CWM Fest. His performances are very energetic and heavily influenced with poetic consciousness. In our interview we discuss a variety of topics to introduce you to one of the OC’s hottest upcoming rappers.
What sets you apart from other OC artists?
I think honestly my vision. I want to bring a new sound and message to Hip-Hop; I wanna definitely change peoples’ thoughts of music and its surrounding society.
My passion for writing has been as early as 8 years old — I’ve been writing poetry, so I’m well versed in lyricism and writing. It’s something I pride myself on. Another thing that differentiates me is my sound.But at the end of the day I’m still me, I’m confident with my ability and personality to just exude that through music.
What’s this new sound?
I can’t categorize it, but it’s soulful vibes with a lot of boom bap and great lyricism. We’re working with new producers to bring a new sound to the OC and put the area on the map.
Energy is an important aspect of your performances. Why is that a primary focus?
To me, everything is energy and energy is everything. Music in general is you giving your energy to the fans. They should be able to feel that and if can’t feel it, you’re not doing your job as an artist. Whatever energy I bring, sometimes well thought out, deep and rooting, hype or a little pensive about society.
I want that [energy and message] to carry through my music and for my fans to receive that. When I come to shows, I love shows because I can truly express the energy and dictate it. I can bring any song to life and there are different vibes to appeal to each fan.
According to your slogan how does your music “free the mind and heal the soul”?
For those who may not know, that’s my mantra because in our era of society, [where society] dictates all standards from: beauty standards and success. My message is to love yourself, be poetically conscious and realize the worth God has gave us in the surrounding world.
When I say “free your mind”, know what’s going on around you and through my music i provide personal anecdotes, experiences to open minds up. “Heal your soul” means to do what makes you happy; please yourself but do what really makes you truly content.
Money and all that doesn’t matter at the end of the day because you can easily chase that. A friend once quoted Bob Marley, stating: money is a number, it’s a number that will never end. Image and other stuff, at the end of the day, for better words, don’t really mean shit; unless you make yourself happy.
Through my music, I definitely discuss those ideals of self-love, family and my journey through the last couple of years. That slogan fits my music and me. perfectly with what I’m trying to bring to the game.
Yo, you went so in on that question. Mind blown. What exactly influences your music? Like top 3?
I don’t.. um, take the question how you want? [laughs]
In general, honestly, number one: my mom. She influences my music the most. On the upcoming tape, you’ll notice she has a great influence in my music; just stories [i’ve witnessed]… she embodies the mantra with strength, optimism and hardship . She just loves so much. I’ll talk about her a lot, stories of her ideas and other things.
Other influences are personal experiences: society’s pressures, school, being broke, being Black in America etc. At the same time, just music influences me man. People like OutKast, Kanye, Jay-Z, Nas. They’ve all influenced me and i’ve taken bits and pieces from them to craft my own sound and growth as an artist.
I know you have a project releasing in the spring. What can listeners expect from Catharsis? Mac Tribe, get ready!
Great music, it’s coming! I can’t wait for it drop. It’s going to be a lot different from my current stuff and what I’m dropping in a couple of weeks. I want to bring a new sound. There will be more melodic tunes, less straight rapping but there will be great lyricism, Always.The tribe knows me for that.
A lot of great features, singers, fellow artists in OC, LA and other areas. Overall, it’s a mixtape with a connecting theme to the mantra. There’s a lot of deep messages through the tape.
I’m really excited for the content and the music itself is a huge step up from what’s out right now. We’ve been working on it right now, already. A couple of tracks are going to release every month.
I mean your Soundcloud basically shows your growth. You’ve been in the game for a good year seriously? I see you with that grind!
Less than a year, yeah. [Chuckles]. I’m excited, I’m excited.
Can you describe your musical journey so far?
Wow, it’s been crazy. I’m very bipolar with my music, so there’s times where I’ll endure little success and get hyped in those times when people don’t want to listen to you, help you out or when stuff falls through. You get very depressed and wonder, can you do it? But at the end of the day, I never doubt myself or my team.
From the beginning, I remember starting with a minute fan base — who knew I could rap, spit, freestyle. Through the last year, or ten months or so.. I’ve learned the business of music: how to market, connect with fans, truly build yourself; talk to producers and venues.
We just had the second show and have two more booked. Two months ago, I was stressing,wondering how to get a show and now it’s coming and I’m onto the next step. Months ago, I worried about Soundcloud followers and now we’re way past that. I wanted to get videos for fans to connect. A lot of people are starting to believe.
Even me, it’s a great journey because I find myself through music. As I write and develop my lyricism and song making skills, I find myself more and more. That’s the best thing about the tape coming out. It’s a graduation of myself .
Where I was a year ago, I’m definitely not now. I think I’ve grown more this year compared to the last four years. Catharsis is a culmination of my growth and journey in the past year. I’m really excited for people to hear it and carry on this journey.
Where do you hope to be by the end of 2016?
My tape will be out by the end of 2016. So hopefully, on tour. Obviously, there’s a couple people I would love to tour with. However we can reach the fans, is how we reach them.
I love performing. That’s my thing, it’s one to listen to the music and I love the energy I bring to it. But when I put on a show, I really love to bring a great deal of energy and dictate how my music is displayed and perceived.
I would love to tour and reach new people. I hope to have great success with the tape. We’re reaching out to blogs. Producers and a lot of people are looking and waiting for it. I hope we can just keep growing and developing music wise.
Any last words for your fam, squad, new fans and the Mac Tribe?
Appreciate what life has to offer! Find me at osimac.com. I’m excited for the journey, we’re definitely gonna make it.
Hop on the train before it’s gone soon! I appreciate everyone messing with me right now. We got a lot of growth to cover. Oh yeah, check out Yo! That Slaps!!
Great things are coming from him. Be on the lookout and check out his most recent track, “Right Here” below!