“I believe my music carries weight, it’s that powerful. It just needs to be heard, and that’s the hardest part.”

Check out the interview with A.R Shad exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.­­­­

Skilly: How were you able to start your journey in the entertainment business? Where did this all start?
A.R Shad:
I was in high school when I started writing and producing, but it wasn’t until I started performing at the school talent shows that I received an incredible amount of recognition. I knew then that I should take the music more seriously, so when I graduated I linked up with a producer who had produced on J. Cole’s platinum selling album The Sideline Story. I then ended up moving to Fayetteville, NC due to my job and began getting shows and creating a bigger buzz for myself.

What are some of the creative ways you use to promote your music?
The quick and easier way, but not as reliable, is to share to my media pages. I prefer to personally talk to people that I want to hear my music. This is my story and I have a lot to tell, so to see where a person is at in their life helps me to decide what song or album to put them on. Doing this helps me connect with people better and it allows a better artist to fan relationship.

What is the greatest challenge you face in today’s entertainment business? How do you overcome them?
To me my biggest challenge is exposure. I get a lot of respect from the people who see and hear me. It’s the ones that don’t have that opportunity or haven’t been exposed to me yet that I feel bad for. There are a lot of new artist coming out in the industry, but what’s really being heard that people will want to listen to 5 to 10 years from now? I believe my music carries weight, it’s that powerful. It just needs to be heard, and that’s the hardest part.

How is the music scene like in your hometown? What do you like about it and what don’t you like?
I’m originally from Lancaster, SC where the music scene is mainly trap music. I’m ok with it, but I hardly listen to that style unless it’s someone like the old school T.I.P or Gunplay. Fayetteville is a city of rock music. People love to hear rock and it’s rare to see people performing rap or hip hop.

Where do you think the future of music is going to be? How do you feel artists can be more a part of it?
It’s hard to tell how music will be. There has been a few different styles that branch off from what has already been done. Genres are now started to fuse more and it’s cool in some aspects. All artists can do is be willing to collab more and give credit to who you work with is a big part as well.

What advice can you give to other upcoming artists and musicians trying to achieve success?
To the artist trying to succeed, my 1st thing is to remain true to yourself. As an artist don’t be afraid to say what’s on your mind. 2nd from that is to know how to take criticism. 3rd is one that I have to remind myself sometimes that patience is a virtue. This isn’t an overnight thing. You have to be willing to go through some things and be ready to sacrifice a lot to make this here a success.

What inspires you to write your next song?
I always have to be heavy in thought or emotion to feel eager to write. I’m kind of nonchalant at times, but I wear my heart on my sleeve; it’s easy to feel some type of way. That gets me in my thoughts. Then the beat is what gets me in go mode. The right beats will possess me to write and come up with the next song.

What are the steps you take to make a song?
When I write my songs I like to have my beat first. 9 times out of 10 I produce my track to be really dark and smooth with the melodies, but for my drums and bass to hit you in your chest and face. Once done writing, I’ll begin recording. From there I’ll do my own mix and mastering. I never go to the studio. I do everything in my room with my studio equipment. My room is where I vibe the best.

What do you think makes a great song?
I believe a great song is made from emotions and words that describe an emotion I’ve felt the best, or a beat that can make you feel something. A great song has to take me somewhere in my mind, either to a memory or to the feeling I have at the moment amplifying it.

Where can we connect with you? Can you give us your social media links and where we can contact you?
Official website: www.artistecard.com/arshad
YouTube: www.youtube.com/arshadfrazier
Facebook: A.R Shad Music
Instagram: @MrGoHardShad