While social media stars have been ascending to real life stardom, their impact has become immensely felt in the hip hop industry. 9 year old personality, Lil Tay, has climbed from just over 200k followers on April 1 to over 1.2m followers by the time this article was published, just 28 days later. A direct example of her influence is heard on the intro to Milan based artist Rickky Wokke's debut single, Chanel & 8o8's, which samples one of Lil Tay's viral Instagram clips.
After adjusting to some time zone changes, we jumped on a call with the budding rapper for an exclusive Q & A.
AHH. Why did you decide to sample Lil Tay?
RW. I made this song a month ago, before she was verified and blowing up as fast as she is. As an artist you have to have an eye for upcoming waves. I just thought it would be fire. The funny thing is, she's saying real shit that hits home for me. The culture is real, it doesn’t matter where you're from, the color of your skin, your age. It’s bringing the world together.
AHH. How did you come up with the artist name, Rickky Wokke?
RW. I was in Nigeria last year just visiting, and some of the old heads out there would call me Wokke, so I just ran with it. Just means balanced life.
AHH. Where are you originally from?
RW. Washington, DC.
AHH. What made you move to Italy?
RW. I’m in Milan a lot, that’s where my main studio and producer, Dee1L33, are. I’m all over Europe just working with dope talent. There is a lot of talent out here. Just feel blessed I have the opportunity to do it my way.
AHH. How old are you?
RW. I’m 24, a Leo.
AHH. Why start making music now?
RW. I was on a Europe tour with Ski Mask last year, just realized that the stage is where I want to be. Back in high school I would write and record with a karaoke mic and audacity software but never really took it seriously. That tour sparked a fire in me and I’m nice.
AHH. Who are your biggest influences?
RW. Just trying to make a better life for the fam. But I like what certain artists are doing and have done. The Pacs, Biggies, Hov, Cole, Drake and Kendrick. I really vibe with Uzi. His shit is fire.
AHH. Anything else you want to add?
RW. I’m working on an album called “Brahmanda” and I’ll be dropping a few singles in the next couple months. So stay on the look out.