With fewer shows to go to in these difficult times we bring you Frequent Players: Meets, keeping the community up to date with upcoming music and artists bringing you closer to the action in every way we can.
Still in the early stages of his career, House of Pharaohs alumni Mally has been making his mark on the UK music scene with his comical bars and powerful voice that keeps you wanting more!
For the release of his upcoming EP, Arkade. We reach out to Mally to talk all things music, positivity and the development process behind his wide range of creative outlets.
Footpatrol: Mally it’s great to have you here, we have been following you for a bit now, wanted to get you here and now we have you here! How have you been?
Mally: Comfortable bro, how are you?
FP: I’ve been good thank you man! Let’s start off with your back story, where did the journey start with your music career and how did you get to where you are now?
Mally: Bro in all honesty there’s not even a music career yet! I’m just a creative you know. In terms of dabbling into music I started from young just from being around my uncle who was a producer, having a musical ear of my own, obviously my mum on sundays cooking, cleaning, music running. I never had this strong affiliation towards thinking to myself ‘Ah I’m gonna do music.’ I don’t think anything that I do now, I thought I was gonna do it’s always been one thing leading into another.
To answer your question directly to when I started to take music seriously, would have been probably about a year ago.
FP: A year! Must have been a hard graft of a year then in that case?
Mally: It was just self doubt and stuff that was just holding me back, in the end I had enough friends supporting me and saying like ‘Yo you got this’.
FP: Tell us a bit about your music, how would you describe it to those who haven’t had the pleasure to listen to it already?
Mally: Pffft! Bro I don’t know!
FP: Okay, if you could describe it in 3 words in that case?
Mally: Well in that sense obviously the genre is Rap and the subgenre is Trap, however the way I come at it and approach it is different in the sense, not so much the content but the way I deliver the content, some people say how it’s how I sound. With punchlines and bars, I like to make people laugh with my music so I would say it’s Trap but not really though. Like on the new EP you’re gonna hear man sing!
I would say its – Light Hearted Trap.
FP: What about your inspirations, were there any artists that you grew up listening to that influenced you to want to get into music?
Mally: Never! If anything, cos I’m in House of Pharaohs I’ve been around my friends making music, so I have been more so inspired by my community and my peers but no one directly. I don’t even have an idol bro! I’m just my own entity. If anything I Idolise my mum because of what she’s done, there’s not anyone else for me to idolise that’s done anything for me.
FP: One of the main reasons we are here today is to talk about your upcoming EP, Arkade. How has it been piecing it all together, has it been a tough process?
Mally: Ah bro! Let me tell you something, I never go into anything preemptively I just kind of like go song after song. About the only thing I thought about was that I’m going to make an EP! I didn’t think about anything else, if I like it and how it sounds then boom thats it its going on. I don’t want to have too much of the same thing, I try not to put too much premeditated thought into it. With music – something so free flowing, you can’t quantify that bro. Don’t ever think that you’re gonna come here and tell yourself that this is what you’re going to do today, it’s not happening. Unless you started something and you come to finish it, then cool. I will never walk into a studio session being like I need something to sound like this because you’ve already caged yourself by that point. I just go in, hear the beat and be like yo bro what do you think of this!
FP: Well we are looking forward to hearing it! I also wanted to touch on your music videos, am I right in saying you direct and edit them yourself?
FP: Where do you get these ideas from? Because I know you edit and help direct other artists music videos to like Doktor’s – Boombastic.
Mally: Let me tell you how it is, no idea was set in stone it’s always been one thing leading to another. So when we created House of Pharaohs, I was at college at the time and knew we were gonna blow up something different and started to think we are gonna have to start performing live! I was like naaa I can’t do live performances G, I wear glasses, falling off stage all of that haha. Obviously when you start to see your boys do it you’re like ahhhhh okay it kind of feels good, by this point we already start making roles in the group. I thought let me do something that can benefit the team, I was doing Art in college and thought of a scrap that let me try digital media and the teacher thought sick do that learn digital media. It started benefitting the group, started to design merch and all that.
Then the problem – ‘We don’t have anyone to do videos for us!’ I said yo cool, so I learnt how to make videos. As I said I was in the music now so nothing was on purpose it was all accidental to help my friend, but it all came full circle and ended up helping me because now I don’t have to ask people. The only thing I would ask for is to record me or produce me and even then I’m telling you what sounds I’m making with my mouth.
But that’s it, I didn’t plan, it just happened.
FP: I wanted to talk about your drawing skills! You did the artwork for Platonic, and your Hatch EP am I right in saying it was the drawing and illustrating first then music?
Mally: Yeah exactly. I always used to rap on the block with the mandem though, but that’s rapping on the block bro ain’t nobody thinking that’s going anywhere.
FP: Do you do any album artworks for other artists as well as your own?
Mally: Everything I do for myself, I do for other people.
FP: How did the works of other people come about then, were they just people within your circle?
Mally: Na, so when I’m dropping my own music and you see in the description created by myself people are like ‘Raaah can you do me one?’
I don’t pick and choose who to help. I just like helping people.
FP: For those who follow you on Instagram will know about your positive talks and messages you share on your stories. How important is it for you to spread that message of positivity and learning to appreciate what you have in life?
Mally: It’s the most important thing! For example I recently got 250k streams on my EP, I didn’t listen to it a quarter of a million times. Who did? The people, so who else should I thank. I know numbers don’t quantify success but I want to show people what you are contributing to.
A lot of people have this thing about ‘artists’ that they are a certain type of way. I just want to let people know that the things you do and the things you say, I care about it. I may not know anyone individually, but I care about you because I care about people whether they are on the highest level or the lowest level. It doesn’t matter. We breathe the same, we die the same you know, so it’s important for me to let people know that they’re loved especially in a world where it’s very easy to get stuff thrown at your face by the people you love.
As someone whose head is down here (point towards ground), you don’t deep how you are perceived by a lot of others. To some I could be their bread and butter they need to hear me to go about their day and in my head I’m thinking it’s mad, then you have others who have hit me up and said that a certain bar changed their life. I’m like ‘I can’t change your life G!’ but i’m not here to argue that I’m just here to listen and be appreciative of that.
FP: Well Mally we really appreciate you coming down to spend some time with us, we are really looking forward to the release of the EP. Before we let you go, is there anything you would like to share to the Frequent Players and Footpatrol readers?
Mally: What I would say to everybody is be yourself fam, be happy, don’t conform at the same time compromise. You can’t always be wrong and strong in your way if it’s affecting other people.
I don’t bend for everybody but I will always compromise for you if it’s affecting you.