Today on our Hot Seat we have music artist and producer Richy Kwan with us. Let’s have a chat with him.
Twist Online : First of all please introduce yourself to our readers.
Richy Kwan : My name is Richy Kwan, I’m coming out of the Vancouver area of British Columbia. I’m a self producing music lover. Been using music as an outlet for my creativity and more importantly an outlet to express myself. I’ve been through many ups and downs from losing my father to suicide, to contemplating it myself. My emotional and mental struggles have been difficult to understand on my own. I didn’t get through it by myself and I don’t think anyone does. That’s why I am open to speaking about it. I want people to be able to talk about their tragedies or difficulties in their life. Richy Kwan isn’t here to bottle it up and I hope I can inspire others to do the same without hurting or harming themselves or anyone around them. Music, helping others and doing things I love, does that for me.
Twist Online : Who or what inspired you to get into music industry?
Richy Kwan : I found inspiration from a variety of different people and teachings over the course of 15 years but I’ll sum it up. I had been playing music since a kid, playing guitar, tenor saxophone, didgeridoo and so on. But the moment that sparked part of this was this one party where everyone’s pretty banged up and feeling good. One of my friends at the time was unreal at off the top of the head freestyles and every time he hit a punchline it grew on me astronomically. After that night I found myself freestyling with my close buddies Ian and Craig during our routine skipping class hours during high school. Mind you I never failed a single class. I found myself in a paradox of listening to seemingly psychopathic music from Tyler The Creator and his former crew Odd Future, while studying the likes of Buddha. Tyler The Creator inspired me to do what I want, while people like Buddha help me stay on a saner path. There was a video where Tyler said something like, “You can be whatever you want to be. If I want to be a unicorn I’m going to be a unicorn. If you want to say I’m not then f*** off because I am.” The message I got was: “I’m going to be whatever I want to be even if you think it’s impossible.” I still agree with that today, obviously not about being a unicorn but about doing what you’re passionate about. That led me to want to pursue music as a career and not just something to do for fun. There was one more thing I had to agree on within myself, that I wouldn’t be in this career to only make a load of money and be on top but to be able to help others and spread important messages that aren’t talked about or even looked at.
Twist Online : Tell us about your recent release?
Richy Kwan : Ok there’s some things you might want to know about this release. The song has some inspiration from a song called “Off Deez” by J. Cole and JID. As well as grabbing inspiration from Blueface because he has an off beat sounding rhyme scheme, where I like being “On Point”, which is the name of the song. Not to say his music isn’t on point, he has a unique style people love. Anyways, the song is also from my perspective. I touch on death and the emotional repercussions but since the style is more on the uplifting and edgy side, I don’t get too deep or in detail. I only go as far as saying, paraphrasing my lyrics, “You are the reason why you still feel pain, let it go and find something new in a good way.” I like to have hidden or subliminal messages when I’m writing my songs but if you read some of the lyrics it is direct. Also, you can find this release on all your favorite listening platforms.
Twist Online : What kind of response you have received from the release?
Richy Kwan : The responses have been great! I have been gaining new listeners, getting comments like, “You’re next up”, “You’re going to make it” and “Keep doing what you’re doing”. I have a buddy I look up to who is a Juno nominated producer/engineer, he was impressed and said that I did good work which was huge in my mind because he is working with some common industry names I hope to work with in the near future. Can’t say any names but one day you will know!
Twist Online : What attracts you more, performing on stage or working in studios?
Richy Kwan : My desire for both is almost equal. I haven’t played big venues or arenas yet. I always have a reoccuring dream of performing in a popular festival. I would love to do something big like that. It is a dream of mine after all! But studios are just as important or even more important because there is no show if no song is made. My uncle owns a studio in Vancouver and one of the studio rooms is going through a huge makeover. The producer I was talking about above, his name is Jamie. He and his fellow producer friend found the direction of the studio room and it is going to be one of the best studios in Canada, not just sound wise but mathematically. There’s this one sound diffuser that has over 1100 different peaks, all hand made. So I’d say I’m almost equally attracted to both performing and working in the studios but for different reasons.
Twist Online : Tell us about your upcoming shows.
Richy Kwan : Yeah, I’ve got shows mainly in the West Coast in Canada. I’m excited because I’m bringing in new and unheard talent. A couple of the clubs have given me and my buddies residency so I can plan as many shows as I want. Since I have an album that’s slowly being released, tour dates will be available in June. Some of the unreleased material will be showcased at these shows. I am also looking at adding the East Coast to be part of that. The music scene in Vancouver hasn’t broken out yet like Toronto has. But I think with Vancouver having such a booming name its just waiting to blow. Especially with the likes of Nardwuar who does interviews for big names. I’m also looking into Europe since my music has reached their ears. All dates will be on my website as well as the purchase of tickets.
Twist Online : Have you set some goals to achieve?
Richy Kwan : Yes I have! By the end of the year I want to have made an impactful online presence. I want to start business relationships with fellow artists that have made a name for themselves and continue to. As that is happening I have a goal to spread more awareness and support for mental illnesses because who doesn’t have a mental illness these days. I would love to come together with other big names in any industry to advocate the potential change that could save many lives. That is my main goal and will forever be my goal. Doing larger shows, selling out arenas, meeting well established artists and making B2B relationships are the tiny goals to a the big goal that I stated before.
Twist Online : Are you working on any new project?
Richy Kwan : Yes I am, always. I have about two to three albums of recorded and unrecorded material. It is all being carefully processed so that the message that I want is there without ruining that vibe you get when you hear a good song. I’ve already started releasing music from one of the albums. The full album will be available within 2019. I’m going to integrate the other album into a special tour. No dates yet. I wish I could explain it but it is not the time. But I will say this and leave you with one final thing. If you’re trying to find some upliftment in your life I would suggest to you to stay tuned because this journey is going to be full of upliftment!