This rapper knows what’s up
Author: Jessie Anton
From opening up for Big Sean to Waka Flocka Flame while performing at festivals to charity showcases since 2011, Saskatchewan artist Rubiks Music exemplifies the results of hard work and dedication.
After rounding out 2014 with a fresh, Toronto-shot music video for his new single, “Uh-Oh,” off his latest album Volum3: Push Play, it was a big year for this beat-making machine.
And, since it’s been a couple years since the Carillon sat down to talk to him, I thought I would catch up with Rubiks to discuss his rise in the music industry, his latest album and music video and, of course, his iconic haircut.
Jessie Anton: Coming from a small, Canadian city, were there many resources out there to support your rap artistry, or do you feel it would have been easier to live in a bigger city?
Rubiks Music: I think being a rapper in Regina is the most entrepreneurial of all the genres. Aside from a couple grant outlets as of recent, and some cool local TV newscast program directors, there aren’t many immediate resources. Radio is the biggest draw for up-and-coming artists, but our music isn’t aligned with the station’s regular programming. Bigger cities have more of an opportunity to tap into markets that haven’t necessarily been developed here, but that’s not an excuse. It just makes us work twice as hard. I’m grateful for where I come from.
JA: What was it like shooting the “Uh-Oh” music video in Toronto? Being from Regina, did you feel overwhelmed, or were you in your element?
RM: We actually shot the “Lay Down” video in late August, but when I came back to Saskatchewan, there was a mishap with the video file. Luckily, I was going back out in a few weeks, so when I had a second go at shooting, we put together the video knowing what would work and what wouldn’t. I was in my element for sure.
JA: How does your music represent your culture?
RM: My culture is a mash-up of where my parents are from, where I live, and where I want to be. I know what it’s like to be Ethiopian, period. The forever-going debate on what it means to be Canadian is a question mark. And, where I want to be in 5 years is an exclamation mark. It’s just a jumble of random punctuation; I try to form them into words and record them over beats.
JA: Do you have any upcoming shows planned for the New Year (in Regina or anywhere else)?
RM: Next month, at the Trifecta Concert Series is at the Artful Dodger, I’ll be performing with some other local guys. There’s a good energy trying to grow the scene.
JA: We know we are able to purchase Volum3: Push Play on iTunes, but where can we get a hard copy of the LP?
RM: Go to Coda! Go to Cade! There are some others sprinkled around town at Vintage Vinyl, Tiki Room, 306 Hip Hop Sk8 Shop, and Planet Caravan.
JA: At last, please, tell us about your iconic, metaphorical haircut.
RM: It meant change; I was tired of the same old. I just finished university with new goals and objectives and just felt like I needed a switch-up. It happened. I’m still processing it. Shout out to Amrita and Parloque on Queen West for that—she was the one in the video.
Well, there you have it, my fellow hip-hop lovers. If Rubiks Music doesn’t inspire you with his haircut, culture, and sick beats, then I don’t know what will!
To stay in tune with this Saskatchewan talent, pick up his new album, Volum3: Push Play, featuring the single “Uh-Oh,” on iTunes or around places like Coda and Vintage Vinyl, and don’t forget to check him out during the Trifecta Concert Series at the Artful Dodger next month.