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At PAUSE, we caught up with Fekky just before the release of his debut album ‘El Clasico’. Whilst this might be his debut, he started in 2012 and began to make waves in 2014 when he released collaborations with Skepta [Way Too Much] and Dizzee Rascal [Still Sittin’ Here]. Check out our interview below to find out how he found staying away from social media for 6 months, where he currently shops, how his Dad influenced him, Billie Sauce and more.
Hey Fekky! How did you get your name?
It’s like a remix of a name I had on the streets when I was younger. They used to call me ‘Fekta’ before. I used to do boxing and my right hand used to be very effective. So I changed it from Fekta to Fekky, so all that stigma from the streets can come into my music.
Who or what are your musical inspirations?
I feel like my musical inspirations are very wide because when I was growing up my dad used to play everything in the house on a Sunday, from Bob Marley even down to like old school hip hop like Big L and Biggie [Smalls]. So I’ve come from an open mind for a long time.
How has coming from South London influenced who you are today and the music you make?
Yeah, yeah 100%. I wouldn’t say from South London but London in general, I feel like whether East, North, South or West, I feel like we all grew up around the same sort of things and go through the same sort of stuff. So it’s like when you’re writing I feel like you’re always thinking about where you grew up, what you’ve been through and stuff like that. I feel like a lot of that comes through in my music, especially in the album.
What would be your dream musical collaboration?
That’s a weird one because it’s a lot of people, but I’d love to do a tune with 50 Cent. I relate to him a lot and I feel like, you know when you look at someone and you feel like… I feel like he’s been through what I’ve been through, like similar things. For him to take it from there to where he’s taken it to, I just compare myself to him a lot and he would be a sick person to do a song with.
What can you tell us about your new album El Clasico?
It’s an album talking about stories and where I’m from and that. I feel like over the last few years I’ve put out a lot of bangers like me and Skepta’s song [Way Too Much] was very hype, me and Dizzee Rascal’s song [Still Sittin’ Here] was very hype, like all of the songs I’ve been putting out. I think because I’ve been on tour so much and I’ve been on the road so much I’ve been putting out a lot of music with that sort of energy, for the stage and that. I feel like with the album it’s a proper body of work, sonically what you’re hearing, stories I’m talking about on that album, just the variation as well alone. I’ve proven to everyone on this album that I’m an artist to be reconned with. I feel like a lot of people are gonna be… I shouldn’t say surprised but I feel like they’re gonna be surprised. They’re gonna be like “one minute, Fekky put this album together?” Even El Clasico, even the fact I’ve named it El Clasico means classic in Spain and I feel like that was a lot of pressure on me. I’ve made it twice over, the first one I made I just felt like it was mad energy, it felt like a mixtape and this time I feel like we’ve got everything. We’ve got live instruments that came into the studio, stuff like that, I feel like every feature on there is organic. It wasn’t forced for the album. So I feel like the time I’ve taken to make it has made everything be a lot more organic, which is cool. It’s a good album, you know what I mean.
You’ve got a sponsorship deal with Ellesse, do you have any plans to design for the brand or release some of your own designs in the future?
Yeah, yeah, we were talking earlier actually they’ve noticed that things that I wear, a lot of kids gravitate towards it, even the sales went up 6% in the UK with it. So now they’re saying that we should make our own tracksuit and trainer so now we’re gonna get into that. I’ve just been trying to focus on my album, like I said to you I’ve been focussed on so many things and I feel like when it came to the album… I came off social media from January for 6 months just so I could focus and get it done. So I wanna get this done, when it’s out I’ll get more into the fashion stuff that I like.
How was coming away from social media for 6 months?
It was crazy man, you know why – because social media is addictive. You’re so used to touching your phone and all that. For me it cleared my mind, I didn’t know how much social media has taken over our lives and I feel like we don’t really have a lot of real conversations no more. Just literally like watching normal telly [TV] and normal things like talking. I feel like coming off social media opened my mind up a bit more to just how it’s a world that, for me, it’s a world that… you don’t get the same growth [you used to]. I remember before when I was younger you had to go and knock for your friend, they would come out, you would play in the streets and that was our fun. I feel like now I don’t really see kids out there how it used to be. When you sit in a living room, next time you’re there watch everyone, even at the table, everyone’s in their phones. I feel like to me it was relaxing. It was a good feeling, but when you’re out of sight sometimes you’re out of mind, I’m coming back with a bang with El Classico so it doesn’t really matter!
How would you describe your personal style?
Sauce [laughs]. I’ve got a nickname Billie Sauce because everything I wear people always say “ah Fekky you’re saucy” so I came into the name of Billie Sauce. I don’t know, I get it from my Dad. He’s a guy that, from young, I remember he would iron everything. From the Shirt, Trousers, down to Socks and Boxers, everything. I feel like he used to take proper care in how he looks and I feel like it’s kinda lept over to me. I always care how I look and I always want to buy stuff like… this will sound weird but I’ve even started going into shops like TK Maxx [discounted designer brand store] because I feel like when I go in there I’m finding one offs and it’s like a mad hunt but I’m finding stuff that I’m not gonna walk into. The other day I wore a Gucci shirt for my launch party and a week later I saw it everywhere and I feel like when I go into TK Maxx I find bits and bobs that I can put together. That’s what I was saying to someone the other day, I don’t feel like it’s going into the big brands and stuff like that, I feel like if you can put it together well, so you can get like jeans from Topshop and you might get a Gucci shirt and put it with Nike trainers and it comes together well…. you can’t put a price on that. There’s no amount of money you can spend to look like that, that’s just how you look and it’s unique to you so that’s what’s sick.
You’ve already mentioned your dad but is there anyone else inspires you style wise?
Is it more just finding those bits that you love?
Yeah it’s finding it for yourself. That’s why I don’t really like to look at people to be influenced, that’s another thing aswell about coming off of social media, you’re less influenced. A lot of the things you’re doing are coming straight from the mind. When I look at other people I don’t like to think ‘I wanna do that’, O want to be the person everyone is looking at and they wanna do what I’m doing. I like to lead, I’ve always been a leader. That’s why – no disrespect to no one. That’s just how I am.
What brands would we find in your wardrobe?
Everything, like I said to you. TK Maxx and everything. It goes from Gucci all the way down to H&M. Like I said, I just wear anything that goes and my wardrobe doesn’t really stay, every month I clear out and it goes to charity and I start again. I’m one of those guys, I don’t really like wearing the same thing again so what I’ll do every month, you look at my Snapchat, I’ll pile it all up and say what charity wants it and they will all be hitting me up, then I just get it sent out through management.
That’s lovely you give it to charity!
Yeah, it’s just sitting there. I feel like these things you’re wearing, someone can easily wear that and put it together and I’m not gonna wear it again so may as well give it away!
Do you have any favourite brands or is it again finding the unique pieces?
It sounds mad but I’m just very varied in my mind, I’m an indecisive person anyway. I feel like when it comes to brands that’s why I’m never into one brand, I’m always diving. It could be a season and I feel like Gucci’s doing well or I might feel like Zara’s killing it, it’s just at that time I’m watching what’s going on. [At the moment] I like the way Gucci have brought it back, like at one point I even had a lyric like ‘Gucci is over ‘ or whatever but now I feel like they’ve bought it back. The colours, how they’re bringing stuff together, it’s sick. Even down to the simple T-Shirts, the pink and stuff like that, I feel like they’ve rebranded really well. I’m looking at stuff and thinking “that’s sick”. Moschino are doing good as well, I feel like they’ve come back… a lot of old school brands are getting it now, I think a lot more people are on the ground now instead of sitting up there watching. I think people are getting their hands dirty and seeing what’s happening on the streets and you can see it in the clothes. It’s a lot more raw. Ellesse too.
What is your favourite sneaker brand right now?
Reebok and Ellesse.
What have you got instore for the rest of this year aside from the album drop?
We’re gonna do a tour, I’ve done a lot of tours but I haven’t done an album tour. It’s my debut album and I feel like it’s gonna be so big and sick so I feel like to put together a sick tour for El Classico, we’re gonna do like 8 dates. We’re in the middle of talking about it right now and getting it done. We’re gonna do the tour, I’ve got a surprise coming around November time as well, so keep a look out for that. We’re just gonna go hard man, all I wanna do is get this album out and go hard, hammer it everywhere, everyone needs to know. We got the Europe tour as well that we’re doing with Boiler Room [music broadcasting platform], we’re doing a collaboration with them for a Europe tour. You’re gonna see a lot of me, I think because I took the 6 months out it’s time to come back hammering and coming hard so I’m gonna get on your nerves, I’m gonna be everywhere.
You can pre-order Fekky’s latest album El Clasico here: https://islandrecs.lnk.to/ElClasicoFP