“I think music will keep evolving and crossing genres. For example, EDM and rap/hip hop. There will be so much genre crossing that we artists should not be closed minded to just our main genre. If we open our ears to all other types of music, this will enhance our creativity to make the next classic.”

Check out the interview with Shogunna exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.

Skilly: How were you able to start your journey in the entertainment business? Where did this all start?
Shogunna: My journey’s beginning coincides with how it all started. Queens, New York City is where it all originated. I grew up with peers who were heavily influenced with the hip hop culture. These peers opened up my senses and made me realize I possessed something special.

I was always a writer, but with the help of my close circle I was able to express what I wrote in art form. I took it seriously when I was released from prison. I began to learn through my own accomplishments and mistakes on how to get my music out there. I’m still learning because I am a student of the game.

What are some of the creative ways you use to promote your music?
My main strategy was guerrilla marketing. I would print stickers to stick onto every visible point for people to see. Stop signs, bus stops, bathrooms in bars/lounges, and even restaurants. I would post my stickers up everywhere. Now because people rely on the internet, I started to promote online. I will always promote my music the way I started.

What is the greatest challenge you face in today’s entertainment business? How do you overcome them?
My greatest challenge is to keep my own identity in the business. Many artists, including myself, at certain times follow the trend of what’s hot or popping. I realized the more I try to follow, the more I lose focus on making my music. That’s why I do my best to keep it unique but with a mixture of both.

How is the music scene like in your hometown? What do you like about it and what don’t you like?
New York City is the mecca. It’s where it all started. I am in California now and they do have many events, but the New York scene from my experience is where artists go to spread their music and get heard. I like the fact that I can cover more ground in NYC. Only thing I can say is that NYC needs to shed some light on our hometown artists.

Where do you think the future of music is going to be? How do you feel artists can be more a part of it?
I think music will keep evolving and crossing genres. For example, EDM and rap/hip hop. There will be so much genre crossing that we artists should not be closed minded to just our main genre. If we open our ears to all other types of music, this will enhance our creativity to make the next classic.

What advice can you give to other upcoming artists and musicians trying to achieve success?
I’m an upcoming artist myself. I don’t see myself giving advice, but I can give words of encouragement. Stay consistent. The more we stay consistent with not just our music but the business of it, then we can grow and achieve endless possibilities.

What inspires you to write your next song?
Right now my inspiration is the motivation from my family and supporters. I honestly don’t think I would’ve put in this much effort and grind to this if it wasn’t for them. They are my everyday inspiration.

What are the steps you take to make a song?
I start with a concept. Then I think of a cadence which will be the chorus. I finish off with my verses last. Or I will just keep writing or recording off the top doing many takes. Sometimes I’m just mumbling to get the feel and everything comes together from there.

What do you think makes a great song?
A great artist with great production makes a great song. You just got to get it heard by the masses to make it greater.

Where can we connect with you? Can you give us your social media links and where we can contact you?
Official website: www.shogunna.com
Facebook: shogunna
Twitter: @shogunnamusic
Instagram: @sho-gunna
Myspace: shogunna
Janjo: Shogunna