Zhino is a young and upcoming artist who’s talent including producing, writing and rapping. He has two EP’s out at moment – ‘Isolation Part II’ and ‘TBDC’ both of which are on YouTube. Aside from music, he also makes skits and videos which involves storytelling or comedic shorts. We got the chance to have a chat with Zhino to get into mindset of the artist.
What made you want to make music?
So my original inspirations just happened naturally I’d say. My mum sings and she played a lot of RnB growing up and always sang with me for fun and that grew on me. My dad influenced me heavily in hip hop too, I was definitely listening to music a 3 year old shouldn’t be! I listened to artists like 50 cent, Jay Z, Eminem and Pharrell. My dad taught me how to produce casually and I took a liking to it. I always rapped naturally because I was interested in production from 4 onwards and sometimes I’d sing on the chorus.
How long does it take for you to produce and write your tracks as you make them yourself?
It depends on the process. Sessions can range from a quick and lively trap beat, where the verses and a hook take about an hour. Or the more thought out, deeper, storytelling tracks usually taking around 2-3 hours. Due to me matching the production with lyrics, beat changes, vocal inflections etc.
How did you come up with your musician name?
Funny story, I was originally called Carnage because I was obsessed with Marvel; one day I actually searched the meaning and was like nope. Then I changed to AJ which was my first and middle name initials so I stuck with that for a while. After my voice broke I wasn’t feeling it anymore, though the name was cringey. I looked at different names and then I came to my middle name again ‘Jairzhino’ and I just took the ‘Zhino’ part and it fits me right now and I don’t think it will change anytime soon.
I always rapped naturally because I was interested in production from 4 onwards and sometimes I’d sing on the chorus.
You released your first album called ‘London’. Can you describe what the album’s name means to you?
Yes, it is due to release everywhere on November 17th and is available to pre order now. I released a music video single off the album called ‘Love Song’ with a little snippet of another track to build anticipation. The album is basically a twisted love letter to where I grew up. I’ve had a lot of shifts in my life in terms of setting and atmosphere, I observe a lot so I pick up on things. This album is my experiences with myself, politics and others in London, I’m using these songs so people can relate and know that someone else is out there experiencing it too. It’s ‘twisted’ because there is no resolution only a comfort with my tracks because as it stands London is still in the same position.
What genre is your music?
As of now I’m just influenced by what I hear. Whether it’s grime, jazz, trap, soul or hip hop. I try to incorporate it into a combination which is my sound. But I’m yet to fully experiment, I’m still testing the waters and playing it safe, so you won’t hear too many things out of the ordinary on ‘London’ – the majority is hip hop and trap.
What is the message you want to pass on to the people who listen to your music?
There is always someone there. Normally all it takes to heal is to share a common experience with someone, so I talk about regular issues and things which are relatable to the average listener. Also, every track I do is almost in a letter format like an update on my life and mentality which I think creates a connection between me and the listener. I’ve already had stories about how I’ve helped listeners get by daily and that bypasses any goal of mine, so I’m really grateful.
While your not writing or making music, what do you do in your spare time?
In my spare time I’m either doing absolutely nothing because I’m drained from music or I am eating or watching the latest films. Oh and playing Red Dead Redemption 2, I need to get back to that but I’m 15 so revising keeps cutting down my spare time!
Are you planning to do any collaborations with other artists?
Yes, its already in the process. You will hear some collaborations on later EP’s and my next albums, as popularity grows i’ll be able to reach out to more people. So maybe my next project will be a collaboration.
Manifest what you want to achieve and it will happen in due time.
What’s is your favourite song on the new album?
It switches everyday, when I’m on my bus journey I get a new favourite. As of right now it’s ‘Summer Time Heat’ I won’t spoil too much but it’s an enjoyable track which just puts you in a hype mood.
Any advice for any students who are getting into music?
Practice. Practice everyday at your craft, nothing works better than practice. If you rap then freestyle everyday, if you produce then produce everyday etc. Oh and have patience, be consistent and make sure you promote yourself to the fullest in any situation. Finally manifest what you want to achieve and it will happen in due time.
For all music lovers and watchers of YouTube, Zhino is a highly recommended artist to listen out for! Get Zhino’s New Album ‘London’ by pre-ordering the album on iTunes for November 17th. Be sure to check out his YouTube Channel as well as subscribe for more of his music content.
Zhino Music Video’s – Official Love Song Video:
Zhino’s Audio Videos – Official Summertime Video: