notjustOk hype will feature (or may be not) the future heavy hitters in naija music. Any material featured in this category will be from unsigned or up & coming Nigerian/African, artists/rappers/producer/record label that contain nothing but promising content. There will only be a post a month in this category.
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Here’s a formal introduction of a fresh-out-the-booth rapper to the Nigerian hiphop game! He goes by the name Yung Hanz! I’ll let him and his music do the talking below. Click in, read, and watch!
Please, introduce yourself to the world. Who is Yung Hanz?
Yung Hanz is a young aspiring artist coming out from the shadows of the streetz of Delta State; about to prove to y’all that no matter how dark a shadow might seem to look, it only comes out with the aid of light. My real name is Hans Willy jnr. I grew up with a single mom… dad passed on before my time… born and bred in Warri. Lived my whole life in the Niger-Delta. That’s as far as I can remember.
Who are/were your musical influences from childhood till this point?
Well… Peter Tosh, Enya, Fela, Yani, Bob Marley, Majek Fashek, Jay-Z, Mos Def, Common, Lil Wayne, B.I.G., and all the rappers from Houston to Atlanta.
When did you start rapping? And when did you decide to go professional?
I have had an elated emotion for all types of music since I knew myself. Rap only spiced it up in 1996. And after 6 years of hibernation, I decided to hit the studio in order to make my imagination a profession.
(laughs!) I see you’re rapping/rhyming. I understand you’re signed with Roc-A-Lot Records. How long have u been with the label and what did it take to secure the deal?
Well understood! Been with Roc-A-Lot for about 3 months now, and the only thing it took me to secure the deal was the grace of God because it was something that wasn’t meant to happen. it could have been worse; could have been better; but it’s destiny. I’ve always been on my grind even before I got signed. My boss 2-Tek happened to hear my song from a friend of mine, and hunted for Yung Hanz. Trust me, when he found me, the greatest paths in the world were crossed!
As an up and coming rapper, how do you access the situation of hiphop in Nigeria against other more popular genres? What hardships do rappers face while coming up, using yourself as an example?
Well, first of all, I’d like to think everyone knows the industry is very hard to break into. But we all know we need hardwork to compete. I grew up rough. I sold marijuana. I emailed hark! You won’t believe this but at a point, I had to sell my cellphone just to roll with CartiAir. Trying to get a record deal was hard! (There was so much) stuff I had to do to get noticed… but then 2Tek heard my tapes, gave me a test, and as a result, the whole building got burnt up! Left lots of blood on the basement. [laughs]
You’ve dropped “Display” (including the video) along with “Freaky”. Two lovely singles I must confess. With display having that gutsy street feel. How far have you gone with promoting your singles?
Right now, my singles (display and freaky) are currently been promoted by “Hype Nigeria” and the “Display” video is being aired by some national TV stations at the moment. It’s been out for barely 3-4 weeks but its already making progress, and I thank God for that.
What’s next for you? Will you be droppin’ a mixtape or an album? And what will be the title?
Actually, an album. It will be called “The Book of Hanz.”
What would you like to add? Any closing remarks or shout-outs?
To the youths, don’t do drugs! To the ladies, watch your freak’n weight… to the haters, keep it up… to all my fans, I love y’all, to Roc-A-Lot – 2 Tek – U 2 fresh! To God almight and my mother I say thank you for life. Watch out for the album “The Book of Hanz”. Its gon be dope! …holla….