“As an artist you’re usually not naturally equipped with business sense. That was something that I really had to work at and nurture. In this game today, you have to be on top of your business to succeed.”

Check out the interview with Ozy Reigns exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.

Where did this all start? Tell us about your journey in the entertainment business.
Ozy Reigns:
It started with writing poetry really. Hip hop and soul music was a major influence on my life early on, but I got into poetry at really young age. I probably wrote my first rap at like age 12.

What would be your biggest piece of advice for the young kids out there trying to do what you do?
Be you and be vigilant. By that I mean, true artists always have a vision. Be true to that vision and watch out for snakes and people who might want to alter your vision. You have to represent who you really are. Bare your soul.

What are some of the hardest challenges and tasks in your position?
For me, a real challenge was becoming more business minded. As an artist you’re usually not naturally equipped with business sense. That was something that I really had to work at and nurture. In this game today, you have to be on top of your business to succeed.

We all know the entertainment business is very tough, but what do you find is the best way to promote and advertise your music?
The internet. Nowadays we have the capabilities to post a picture, a video, or song and it really could go viral. Though it’s not likely that what you post will go viral, if you stay consistent you can actually grow your fan base that way. Some of the more conventional ways like doing shows still apply, but even that goes hand in hand with the internet.

Tell us about your city. How are the artists and the fans?
I’m from Columbia, SC, and South Carolina has birthed greats like James Brown, Eartha Kitt and Dizzy Gillespie. It’s obviously not and never has been a big entertainment market, so naturally I left for Atlanta as soon as I could. I’m blessed to be from there because in a sense we had no music identity so I and the kids I grew up with connected with up north, west coast, and southern hip hop.

Where do you see yourself a year from today?
Touring the country with Working Class Music Group.

Who and what were your biggest inspirations? Who do you look up to in today’s world?
Coming up I always looked up to groups like Outkast and A Tribe Called Quest. They are the epitome of great hip hop music to me. My favorite rapper is Nas, so today I look to him as kind of a role model. As a dude who’s been doing this for over 20 years, he is still all about the culture and being the best on the mic. Love that dude.

How do you feel about the music coming out today? Do you like it?
There is a lot of great music being made today. Unfortunately a lot of the crap is what gets the mainstream push. It’s unfortunate because it used to be cool to take pride in being the best at rapping and saying things in clever ways. Now the beat is the most important thing by far. I do feel like art is slowly beginning to be respected on a mainstream level again.

Where can we contact you and find you online?
Official website: www.ozyreigns.net
Bandcamp: www.ozyreigns.bandcamp.com