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Kojey Radical on Performing in New York & Connecting w/ Fans | MTV News


– We are at Baby's All Right in New York New York! (crowd screaming) Make some noise! (crowd screaming) And give a warm welcome to the one that they call Kojey Radical! (crowd screaming) I love New York

I almost hate saying it as much as I do, because it sounds like a T-shirt slogan But I genuinely do love this place and like I was lucky enough to do my first show, first American show anyway, in New York I think maybe, was it the next day? I actually ended up here, yeah, I was in Baby's All Right for a party and I just remember thinking like, "Yo, this place is dope, like this vibe is cool It'd be awesome to do a show here one day" Kojey Radical means everything and nothing at the same time

It wasn't a name that I picked intentionally, I didn't set out to be the radical or a radical character I think the age at which I picked the name I'm not even sure I knew the context of what being a radical meant but my real name is Kwadwo So Kojey comes from Kwadwo I'm Ghanaian, Ghanaian descent, and Radical, it was a username on MSN

I was either like, actually no I won't say the other ones because you can probably Google it and find some crazy stuff (laughing) But yeah, it was my like username on the internet for ages and then yeah, kind of grew into over time I'm from Hoxton Hoxton, London H-o-x-t-o-n

That's where I been I think so much of my identity remains in Hoxton I'm passionate about a lot things Music, art, fashion, design, poetry Anything that can be created is part of my passion list

But it's hard to describe myself I prefer letting other people describe me I remember the first time that someone kind of came up to me and was like, "What you're doing is truly radical" I was like, "Ahhh, sounds good, doesn't it?" (laughing) You know what I mean? But the name is a lot of pressure (laughing) The name can be a lot of pressure, but I think I just gotta live up to it really Creativity is life to me

So it's exciting to be in a position where I could create for a living Because I think that's what, some people call it music or being a rapper or whatever I just say I create for a living Oh, how would I describe my fan base? I hate saying fans I call them family, people

You man, you lot It's just about humanizing everything But I don't know how to describe them though The best way is that you gotta come to a Kojey show You get there and you might expect to see one type of crowd or another type of crowd and then you just end up seeing everyone

Young, old, hip, trendy, not hip, not trendy I wouldn't want one particular type of fan I'd want a society of people to enjoy the music and then also hold me accountable if they don't I'm not better than anybody and if anything, they're better than me Because just for buying a ticket or listening to the song or supporting a video, or telling someone about me, they're literally helping me make a living, d'you know what I mean? So I'm very grateful to anybody that supports me

When people tell me about my shows, they always make a comment on my energy They say, "Your energy's really infectious," or, "Normally these kind of crowds are tough, "but the way you come across on stage, "it's hard to not engage with you "or follow along in your journey" I think that's like number one is that if I can have like if it feels like we're together with peoples, then it's going to be a good show regardless The people that allow me to travel the world, meet people that I would never expect to, d'you know what I mean? And like enjoy experiences that many many people from my area don't ever get a chance to do So, for me their experience at a show is everything

Like, paramount I remember what made me love this I remember what kind of atmospheres and shows that grew me as a performer and helped me really understand what it's like to connect with people on a personal level You know when you've connected with people in a special way and I know when I haven't, 'cause I come off the stage mad Everything could have gone fine

There could have been no mistakes, nothing But if I walk off that stage and I feel that I didn't touch them people– Triggered! (laughing) I love this I love this too much for it to, to not affect people in a positive way I care about the performance I care about the quality of the show and the experience that people walk away with so, if they don't walk away with a good one, I've not done my job

I'm so grateful I thank the stars every day that my career is moving and I can do things like this, and I could be in America touring and all that stuff But fame wasn't ever part of the plan It was about creating great experiences and giving people good music and that love that I feel like is necessary in music This don't happen for everyone

And big or small, every show is important so, I think there is that moment of just going, "Well, like "we're still here, we're still doing this and, enjoy it"

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