The music is too real with this one. If you don’t know Kodie Shane by now, we are pleased to provide a proper introduction. From Chicago to Atlanta, her music is as strong as the demographic she comes from. Stay tuned to this post as Kodie Shane talks getting her start with hip-hop, the rise of an evolving artist, and being the first lady in the Sailing Team, exclusively via TUC Magazine. As you take a little look into her story, you’ll begin to understand the product. We’re here for her music, as you should be too. Rock with the interview below.
Kemet High: How did you get your start with hip-hop?
Kodie Shane: I wouldn’t just say hip-hop, I would say music in general because I wouldn’t call myself just a rapper; I would call myself an artist. My sister was in a group called Black back in the 90s; they were TLC’s group and I went on tour with them when I was a baby. I almost grew up around it, it’s all I know, entertainment is all I know. Growing up was like “that’s what imma do”. Once I found out that I could really do it… like when I started writing music for other people and they loved it, and I heard it come to life a different way it made me feel like I could do this.
KH: What was the first track you ever wrote or recorded?
KS: “Crown Me”. My producer Matty P gave, me a computer; it was a Macbook desktop. He gave it to me and it had a whole bunch of beats on it. One day I was just going through the beats, going through the beats…picked a song, and wrote it. I was 15 when I wrote it, 16 when I recorded it. We put that out and got good feedback and then I did “Sad”. And that’s when I just started, really doing it.
KH: What do you think is the most significant fact about the music scene in Atlanta?
KS: It might just be an opinion to me but I’d say the kids aren’t scared right now. For instance, The Sailing Team; we’re all our own people and we’re not scared to be different. Byou is not afraid to be different , Burberry Perry isn’t afraid to be different , and Yachty is not afraid to be different from me… we’re all just different and that’s what I feel like is the most significant fact in the music right now, is that nobody is scared. Back then it was like girls would be scared to say what they really wanted to say. That’s how I feel things have changed, people breaking and entering, trying not to be scared. That’s like my thing, that’s gotta be my motto.
KH: Absolutely, that’s one thing I pieced together too is that there’s not a lot of old heads holding it down anymore like Jeezy, T.I., Andre…etc. It’s a lot of the younger heads.
KS: Yeah, and it’s not even about whether the music is amazing. It’s about them having the balls and integrity…. yo go do it and not be scared.
KH: Exactly, I was going to ask this deeper in the interview but we might as well hit it now, how did you link up with the Sailing Team?
KS: Before I knew Coach K I was at this Yachty show. I knew coach for a while like before I wrote “Crown Me” & “Sad”; he was like a father figure to me, like a mentor. So I was at the show, backstage, and I saw coach. He was like “yeah I manage Lil Yachty right now, you gotta meet him” or whatever. So Yachty just got off stage and we took a picture. That was the first time I ever really met him. And then my producer knew K too, like we all know K, and I wanted to get Yachty on “Sad” to try and bring a different sound out with him. So we go to the studio and I played it for him, and he instantly got on it. So after that we just hit it off. He’s really just a great guy, a stand up kid, and I love him to death; like that’s my brother. We weren’t just industry friends, it was more like we’re actually friends. When we linked up he asked me to be the first lady in the Sailing Team. He just wanted to see me shine.
KH: How was it shooting with the FADER?
KS: It was amazing, shoutout to Petra Collins. FADER was dope and I honestly love them because they’re so free. It’s not like “we’re gonna do this and this”. Its like “we’re going to go with how we feel and just make dope stuff”.
KH: That’s a fact, the video was crazy, Summer Songs 2 was crazy. Alright let’s take it back, how do you think you differ from other artists in Atlanta?
KS: I’m just trying to make some real music, a lot of people laugh when I say this but, I’m trying to make some R. Kelly R&B. I’m trying to make some real music. I want to be rich, like who doesn’t want to be rich. I want to be able to buy my mom and myself anything I want, but that’s not why I’m doing this. Some people might do it, get rich, and then fall back on the music. That’s not what I want to do. I want to continue to make good music whether I get rich off of it or not because it’s almost like a blind date; you’re literally working for something that might not be in your plans to work. All I can really say is I just want to make real music. I want people to get stuff from my music. Almost like when you watch an old T.V. show and you get the lesson at the end; I just want people to listen and take something from it. I want to make them think a little bit.
KH: Absolutely, that’s the art of music right there.
KS: Yeah I’m trying to be like… I don’t ever want to say I’m a rapper because what if I paint next year? Then I’m a painter. No, I’m just an artist.
KH: I love that, who is your favorite artist and influence?
KS: Ok, right now, I’ve got to tell you everything I’ve been listening to. I like old music. Like today, I woke up listening to “My Boo” by Usher. The likes are on my Soundcloud. My favorite artist… I don’t know I’m in love with Aaliyah right now; I’ve been really listening to her. I love Amine, who made “Caroline”.
KH: Would you rip this beat though?
KS: Dude, I was thinking about redoing it because I always see people posting it and um, I was like man I’m about to look this up. I was like “wow”, the beat is crazy. Sometimes I just go through Soundcloud and I’ll be listening to this guy Nick Carter, he’s really cool, Jordan Soloma, he’s like a rapper, kind of like a PARTYNEXTDOOR type of…, G- Nash, “I Hate You, I Love You”…I just try to listen to different stuff so I can make different stuff. Different stuff inspires me. I can’t just go and listen to the same stuff because I’ll never find inspiration. I find inspiration in music and in people. Sometimes I look at my phone and there’s nothing I want to listen to. So I have to literally go search.
KH: If you could compare your sound to any artist of any time, who would it be? If you could compare…
KS: Drake; well my feel.
KH: Did you fuck with Views?
KS: Yeah, I loved everything on Views except maybe like 2 of them and I don’t even mind if they play. I just don’t go and listen to them, you know? He doesn’t miss. But I wouldn’t compare myself to anybody. If I had to compare myself to anybody, if I had to be in a lane, it would be Drake. I would want to be over there.
KH: How did you end up doing Raurfest and what was that like?
KS: My mom freaking loves Raurfest and we tried to get on it last year but we were too late. It was really exciting and I was happy to be there. It was dope. There was an after party on Edgewood and I saw him. We looked at each other once and then we looked away. It was kind of like, I think we know each other, and he was like “what’s up? I think you just did the Raurfest, was everything good? Did they treat you well? Did everything sound good?” And I was like “Yeah, I’m good, I’m here”. He’s a great guy and I love his spirit. His spirit is really Pharrell to me, and Andre, early Andre.
KH: At what point did you sit back and say, “this music shit is for me”…?
KS: Well, kind of when I did “Crown Me” or when I did “Sad”, or maybe even “In Your City”. That’s an old song I dropped but it’s still hard. And then when I went in the studio with Uzi, and he was really looking at me like… (he was into it). Then when Boat really liked “Sad”, it made me feel like “ok, that’s the kind of music I ultimately want to make.
KS: You know some music that can get you sad when you’re not sad? You know how Drake can put you in all types of feelings you don’t even have? That’s the type of music I want to make.
KH: If you could play one song to put the entire world onto Kodie Shane, what would it be?
KS: Dang, it would be something y’all don’t even know. But a song that y’all know… Probably “You” because I know if I’m talking to the whole world, I could get every age with that song. I could get every age even if it’s the babies.
KS: The age I might miss is my age. Not that I don’t want to turn up but when it comes to music, that’s not all I want to hear. Sometimes I feel like Slaughter Gang, and sometimes I feel like Ellie Golding.
KH: We were talking to Matty when we walked in and he said you started at age 14. Most of your beats are tagged by Matty, so how did you and Matty link up?
KS: I linked up with Matty through my mom. He and my mom are really good friends. They got a studio together and that’s when I wrote “Crown Me” and nobody was taking me serious but we recorded it. So then I started writing music for other people and that’s when he was like, “Does Kodie have a pen?” Like “Is she over there rapping but can really do this?” And that’s when I recored “You”. That’s when it was like “alright… we’re gonna get behind this song”.
KH: If you could work with any producer other than Matty right now, who would it be?
KS: I wouldn’t want any of them to just send me beats because the thing with me and Matty is I watch him make almost every beat that I’ve done or he’s done it one day and we come back the next, or its on the spot. So I would love for Metro to make a beat right in front of me, I would love for TM88 to make a beat right in front of me, I would love for Zaytoven to do some keys right in front of me. I’m a creative person so I don’t want beats that a bigger artist said no to. I want to be catered to like I’m just as big. I need something new and I want it to be fresh.
KH: If somebody made a movie of your life, who or what would be on the soundtrack?
KS: I would have Ellie Golding, that type of music… Zedd, yeah y’all didn’t know I knew and I would have this in my movie.
This would be when it’s ending, right before my credits. You gotta hear the hook. And G-Nash, he snapped.
KH: Ok, ok, I can rock with that. But last question, how did you come across the name “The Don Baby”?
KS: I was watching this movie called Don Jon and he got all the hoes. Like he could look at them and in the next scene he’d be in the room with them. So I’m like “Yo, he’s The Don, I’m The Don.” And then it just stuck but I’m Kodie Shane, it just doesn’t stop.
KH: Whats one thing you wanna say to the people?
KS: One thing I want to say to the people; thank you guys so much, I love y’all and don’t be scared, just do it.
What’s next for Kodie Shane? A country wide tour with her entire team and another project. If you haven’t already, be sure to listen through Little Rocket & 2060. But as far as the follow up goes, she’s certain to deliver. We can’t give too much information but just know she’s going back to the future with this next one…
Follow Kodie on Soundlcoud and Twitter at Kodie Shane & @itsthedonbaby
By K. High