Back on January 24, superstar rapper and award-winning artist BewhY officially kicked off his second U.S. and Canada Tour: The Movie Star 2020 in Atlanta. Guest artists Swimcoach and Ted Park will tour with BewhY on his 9-venue tour across major North American stops.
Before his concert in Oakland, BewhY took the time to answer some questions with allkpop. Check them out below!
Please explain any interesting anecdotes or unforgettable incidents while preparing the tour.
While I was touring, coronavirus broke out, so all of my team members had to wear masks. There wasn’t a particularly significant episode, but I’m having a good time overall.
Where do you get inspiration from when writing your lyrics?
I usually get inspiration when I’m at church, worshipping, praising, or reading the Bible, but these days I’m not completely sure where I get my inspiration. Now that I have to work on a new album, I’m looking for places where I can get new inspiration.
What kind of message do you want to share with fans through your music?
As someone who has faith, I want to show that what I believe is admirable, and shed a positive light on my culture. To be honest, faith and Christianity are heavier topics. I want to use a lighter medium to share these more serious topics with others. With my second album, however, I also focused on a different idea. Hip hop culture originated in the U.S., but now it’s a global culture. There are still fans and artists in the Korean hip hop scene who think that Korean hip hop is inferior to American hip hop. Korean hip hop always has to look up to American hip hop.
What songs have you listened to most recently?
These days, I’ve been listening to Roddy Rich’s “The Box” a lot. I’ve also been into funk music, so I’ve been listening to and studying Daft Punk and Giorgio Moroder’s music.
What’s one new thing you want to try in 2020?
I recently launched my label Dejavu, so I want this year to be a dynamic year for Dejavu group. I also want to make it a goal to interact with my fans more.
If there’s one thing you want to be remembered for, say in 30 years or so, what would it be?
In 30 years, I’ll be 58 years old, and I wish I would just be remembered as a living legend. I definitely want to be known as a historic figure who represents this generation, but I also want to be someone who continues to create new history even at that time.
If you could invite one person — any person — to dinner, who would it be and why?
I would eat dinner with Kanye West given that I’m good at English. I feel like there would be a lot of areas where I would be able to relate to Kanye West. To be honest, I didn’t particularly like Kanye West a lot in the past, around one to two years ago. Before, I felt like his music was a little different from the direction I was heading towards. I felt like he had faith, but some of his aspects made me confused. I liked his music, of course, but it wasn’t until his ‘Yeezus’ album that I really started listening to Kanye’s music more seriously. Most recently he released ‘Jesus is King,’ which made me admire and wonder how his mind and spirit had transformed. I would love to have an in-depth conversation with him about that.
You’ve been interviewed so many times — what’s the one question you wished someone would have asked you but never did?
I think if someone asked me what I think about Korean hip hop, I would have a lot to say. In Korea, people use the phrases “non-kimchi (탈김치)” and “non-Korean (탈한국인).” I’ve been complimented a lot with those phrases. If a Korean rapper raps well, people say, “Wow, he sounds so foreign. He has non-kimchi flow, he’s non-Korean.” Phrases like these that look down on being Korean have become compliments in Korean hip hop culture. “Wow, the way he raps sounds like American hip hop. Wow, his sound is so foreign.” But the fact that these have become compliments makes me embarrassed, to be honest. What’s wrong with Korean hip hop? There are so many talented people in the Korean hip hop scene, who have strong originality and are able to maintain their own style despite being different from American culture. Until when do we have to make music beneath the U.S. and until when will American music be the only correct answer? People continue to think that Korean culture is behind, and of course, American culture is remarkable. There are so many things that we have to learn from and we continue to think of American hip hop as an original influence. However, Korean artists have their own fragrance. We have our own colors, and I truly wish people would acknowledge this. That’s why I want to continue making good music as both a Korean artist and a global artist while making shoutouts to all of the Korean artists out there.