Essex Golden Boy: French The Kid Interviewed
21 Nov 2020
At a time where bridges between territories are being built and the norms placed upon genres are often merged, stretched and manipulated; finding a truly authentic talent that sounds completely unlike their comrades is a rare occurrence. Yet this is the case for Essex-hailing rapper, French The Kid, who has refined a sound that flows fluidly from an ear-catching mix of English and French melodics – the latter, a language he acquired while growing up in the South-West of France. To introspective bars that anticipate his bright future ahead, detail the trials and tribulations of his past, tackles mental health and the gritty endeavours of a Romford boy. Since debuting his first track “Bella Latina” last October, each release there after have quickly become fan-favorite‘s resulting in the star amassing close to 5 million streams on Spotify alone.
Congrats on “Broke Toys,” the song is an actual banger! However this gonna sound silly, but I have to ask what’s a Broke Toy exactly?
It’s a lot of different things, you know. If your brought up a certain way, you end up messing around and that. It’s a bunch of different things, that all I can say on that.
So talk me through where your from because I know your based in Essex? But then you speak French on tracks…
I was born in Harold Hill, Essex and then I moved to France for quite a long time which is where I learned to speak French. But, I came back sort of recently – my mom’s side is Irish, so that’s my background.
You first released “Bella Latina” in 2019, but I can only assume you’ve been making music for a lot longer?
I mean, I was sort of f*cking about making freestyles and putting them on Soundcloud. But the first official tune I recorded was “Bella Latina”.
What sparked your interest in music initially?
My brother is a big musician, so my interests kind of stemmed from him. My mom is also, so it kind of runs in the family. I’m not sure why I took so long to start doing it.
I mean, we both know “Bella Latina” is an amazing record, but why did you choose it for your big debut?
I picked “Bella Latina” because it just felt like the right thing to put out – from the French to the flows.
You’ve referenced Potter in your lyrics, is he some you’d say was quite influential to you growing up?
Yeah, the thing is, round here [Essex] everyone that is in the bubble listens to Potter. He’s local and you can relate a lot to what he spits about, so he’s definitely an inspiration.
What artists are you listening to at the moment?
Silky – that’s my brother, Dave and Dutchavelli. But there’s loads more!
Across your catalogue of music you’ve shown that you have a sound unlike anyone else’s. How do the first songs you released on Soundcloud compare to the music you make now?
I started off with real rap, which I still do now and will always do.
So when did the melody come in?
I was literally messing about in the studio, then I just worked on it day after day. Until, I perfected it on most beats and learned how to use auto-tune.
If you were to introduce someone who had never heard of you before, to your music what song would you say represents you best?
“Broken Lives & Stolen Peds” and my Mad About Bars freestyle.
Have you heard Dutch’s “Bando Diaries” remix, is that something we can expect from you as someone who is bilingual?
Yes, it was hard. Definitely, I listen to a lot of French artists, in fact European artists in general. And I’m sure internationally more collaborations will come.
I feel like everyone is looking to leave their mark on the scene and build a legacy. What sort of impact do you think you could make in years to come?
I want to be as big as possible, in so many ways from mental health to confidence. I mean, I just look like your typical Essex boy *laughs* but I wanna show anyone who’s young that you can do it pretty much.
Speaking of mental health, I know that particularly on “Broken Lives & Stolen Peds” you speak about it a lot. So it’d be interesting to know what types of things you do to keep yourself relaxed and in good spirits?
Spending time with family, family is everything to me. I have good people around me.
So this year has been a mad one and the death of George Floyd and countless others has stirred up a lot of talk about the importance of acknowledging white privilege – and as someone who has skyrocketed so early on in a genre predominantly built by black artists. Do you think it’s important to be aware of the current climate and spread awareness?
100% I’ve always supported it. Because I wouldn’t have a career if it wasn’t for black people. As soon as the news broke, I made sure I shared the video [of George Floyd] straight away and then I went away to learn about the culture and the systematic injustices that oppress it. Because all I can do is learn really, which I’m more than happy to do.
Can you go on your Spotify and tell us what the last song you listened to was?
Silky – We The Men.
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