An artist must be willing to work on his craft every day. Putting a meaning into your music makes it even more special. Our recent discovery Thabos has been developing his style for quite a while and pouring out songs.
We had a chance to catch up with the rapper and learn more about his journey. Enjoy the interview:
First off, where did the name Thabos come from?
I was in Atlanta with my family a little over a year ago, still trying to decide on a name to call myself. Before Thabos I simply went by J3ph (J for Jeremy, 3 cause I’m the third child in my family and for the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, P for my middle name, Paul, and H for my last name Harmon). I didn’t feel like that name described me or my music in the way I wanted it too. I had a nephew that was born the day before we got there, and his aunt was telling me his name was Thabos. It’s a South African name that come from “Lethabo” meaning happiness or joy. That is what I wanted to make people feel in my music, so It felt natural to be my stage name. Hopefully my nephew won’t be upset with me for borrowing it.
How would you describe your sound?
My sound is a mix of a couple genres. Mostly hip-hop, but I am inspired by a ton of indie/alternative and r&b. It honestly is hard to describe cause I try do something different each song.
Which artists have had the biggest influence on you?
J. Cole hands down. He is the entire reason I started making music. When I started making music, I was just trying to be like him. As I grew and my music tasted evolved, I have had a ton of other influences that have had impacted my music. Other influences have been Chance the Rapper, Kanye West, J.I.D, Smino, Saba, Daniel Creaser, Boogie, and Vampire Weekend.
What drives you to create original music?
I love music and I love making it. The thought of changing a kid’s life threw a song I wrote is something that definitely pushes me. I want to show people that there is hope and that they are not alone. I do it for any kid who feels alone, depressed, and feels like giving up. Cause I was once that kid and no one deserves to feel that feeling, it sucks. I want these kids to see that there is hope.
How does a song come together for you? What is your songwriting process?
I usually write how I feel in that moment, if I’m hype than that’s what kind of song I’ll write, if I’m sad or feel down then a more slower emotion driven song will come out. I try to always put a message in a song, it doesn’t always happen, but there will always be some life in my music.
What message are you hoping listeners will take away from your music?
I want my listeners to know that they are loved. That no matter how lost they feel, that no matter how many times they fall and fail, that Jesus is there to pick them back up and loves them no matter what. I have failed so many times in life I sometimes feel like I don’t deserve his grace, but he still gives it to me, and that is something beautiful.
Give us a tip from your experience so far that could help other artists getting started?
Just write, even if your trash, keep writing. The first song I wrote was a “Hotline Bling” parody, and it was some hot garbage. But I worked my craft for over four years and sometimes I still I have trouble coming up with new things to write, however; even then I never stop writing it will come to you. There are so many more thing I could advice these kids I should like teach a class, but writing is important, and never stop if that’s your passion.
What will the future hold for Thabos?
Big things. I have plans that are way bigger than me, cause it not about me, it about God and all his children. This is for them.