We caught up with a very Unique up and coming artist. He is indeed an artist in the best sense of the term.
BIO: Whysir is a ‘subconscious’ rapper/producer out of Portland Oregon who is originally from Orem, Utah. He is an avid psychonaut, psychedelic advocate and activist, former professional skateboarder, and all around nice guy. He uses his musical platform to speak on subjects varying from the nature of consciousness, to social justice, to the boundaries of perception; all while going out of his way to stack his punchlines wherever possible to add layers to his already complex content. He can usually be found in downtown PDX riding his skateboard, in his home studio or on stage wherever he’s been called to perform. Catch all his latest including his debut album ‘The Multiversal Adventures of Whysir: Journey Through the Hallways of Always’ at hallwaysofalways.com
What is your background? tell us where you grew up and some information about your upbringing/experiences as a youth: I was born and raised in and around Payson Utah, but currently reside in Portland, Or. my mom was schizophrenic and my dad was highly verbally and physically abusive, so growing up was definitely a trip in and of itself. I basically grew up constantly questioning my reality and safety for numerous reasons. At this point I’m using music to make sense of it all. It’s why mental health and awareness are a huge part of the messaging in my music.
At what moment did you know that music was part of your life and what feelings did you have towards making an active impact with your music?
On December 21st 2014 my home in Orem Utah caught fire. The fire destroyed everything. My dog also got stuck inside the house and suffocated which was super hard on me (RIP Judo). Somehow though, a computer I had built to make music on had survived the fire virtually unscathed. I had just been rapping and making beats with some friends in SLC (shout to Ghost Crew!) as a hobby up to that point, but with literally very little left to lose I moved to Portland and started pursuing Hip hop as a career.
What artists inspired/influences you and if you could collaborate with any artist (alive or passed) who would it be and why? The hip hop scene in Portland has shown me that there are tons of underground wordsmiths who do it better than your favorites in one respect or another, but on the larger scale; I’m most inspired by artists who have layered depth to their work like Kendrick or Gambino. I really love artists that put a lot of thought into their content like I do. Aesop is dope in that respect. I’m also a big fan of fast rappers like Logic or Watsky. I dunno… I listen to loads of different stuff but find myself usually gravitating toward hip hop that either makes me think, or that pushes the sport or both. You know what I mean?
If I could work with any artist out it would probably be any of the above or maybe someone like Chance the Rapper or J Cole just because I know that even being around that level of wordsmith would make me have to go harder and level up myself.
What do you think about the current state of hip hop/mainstream music? I think it’s a sort of Renaissance, honestly. It seems to me that the “technology” of rapping has been picked up sort of universally, so that’s why we are seeing a flooded market of low quality or tasteless/vapid material, but it’s also a better time than ever for anyone who truly had passion and something to say, to take a chance and say it into a mic. It’s just always gonna be a struggle to get noticed and I feel like some of the negativity people express around Hip hop culture is just that; people wishing they would get noticed.
Currently, what projects do you have in the works that you are most excited about?
I just barely released my debut album; The Multiversal Adventures of Whysir: Journey Through the Hallways of Always.
The project took me two years to complete from conceptualization to release and is a 3 act concept album cut into 12 songs based in a comic book like version of Portland. The story follows an unlikely hero through an adventure of love, loss, and learning as he tries to use logic and wordplay to resolve issues of social justice and defeat enemies of truth and goodness. I couldn’t be more proud of the project itself, as well as the real life journey I went on in order to see it through.
What are your short term career goals within the next 6-10 months?
I think I’d just like to become a name on people’s tongues within the industry. I’d definitely like to do more music videos and possibly line up a small tour or something along those lines to promote all this “hallways of always” content.
What are your long term career goals within the next 2-5 years? I would love to be able to see the rest of the world and show my music to audiences everywhere. I think my message of love and hope is one that world could genuinely use more of as we slowly creep toward whatever apocalypse awaits us.
If you had one song out of the catalogue you have created to show a person what song would it be and why?
THIS IS A HARD QUESTION!!!! I am emotionally attached to all 12 songs on the newest project for different reasons, but I guess if I had to pick one song to show people and say “that’s me” I’d say ‘Olive’ is the song. It’s a song I wrote in like 20 minutes (I actually wrote Coconut the same day!..that one is a good example of me as well) That is supposed to act as a sort of magic spell to dispel negative emotion and it’s definitely done as much for me. Beyond that I say “the floor is all lava” in the hook which was my favorite game to play as a kid. Okay, also Cascadia is another dope track that describes where I’m at currently best… I DON’T KNOW!!!
To the person who had never heard of you what is it about your music and story that you would tell them to entice them to be a supporter? I am a psychonaut and sceptic with a life long connection to the aethereal and the unseeable. I use Hip hop as a platform to expand consciousness and raise awareness of mental health and multiversalism; while advocating for safe and intention based phychedelic use.
If your music could be described in five words what would those five words be? Trippy, Profound, Lyrical, Epic, and Visceral
What do you bring to the game that is unique and different? I think I have a unique perspective because of my upbringingand how it’s generated my fascination with the human mind and perspective. My mom was always in and out of states custody if her meds weren’t working, so it kind of became my job to navigate what was objectively happening for her and what she was just seeing because of her condition. This put me in a position of being resistant to authority and also broke the social contract for me before I was even out of high school, but it made me good at describing things. Sometimes my mom would tell me entire stories about people she had met and talked to and it was my job from a young age to then figure out if that person was even real. Now I figure out if people are real just by looking at them.
To the aspiring artist who is considering a career as a musician what lessons or advice would you give them to inspire them or to uplift them in the journey?
I would say that if it’s making you happy to do what you love then you shouldn’t let it be discouraged. Not everyone gets a chance to pursue their dream and you shouldn’t make yourself the obstacle that keeps you from taking a chance you may have. Get out of your own way and enjoy the ride.
What are your social media profiles and where can people purchase/download your music? I’m everywhere @whysirraps and you can get my latest album along with merch and up to date news on my goings on in the multiverse at hallwaysofalways.com
What are your final words you would like to say to people that you have left out?
Spread love out there and learn together! Remember to question everything; without question!