Local Vibes
August 10, 2012
Rap artiste Prez says he is slowly, surely realising dreams

Since returning to St Vincent and the Grenadines from the United States three years ago, Rap artiste Akene “Prez” Keizer says life in SVG has been “good”.{{more}}

In an interview earlier this year, Prez told SEARCHLIGHT about his desire to become an internationally recognized recording Rap artiste and today his aspiration is “slowly, but surely progressing.”

In October 2011, the Campden Park resident recorded his first locally produced record “We Good” and since then, he has become a household name among Vincentians.

“I never predicted that things would be as good as it is now, because, as we know, Hip Hop/Rap is not high on the listenership of the Vincentians, but I am so amazed of the reception I’ve received since our last interview,” Prez said during a visit to SEARCHLIGHT’s office on Tuesday.

One of Prez’s major accomplishments since returning home was the signing of a record deal with C2W Music Ltd (Caribbean 2 World), a music publisher that has been in existence for the past 3 years and is responsible for the marketing and distribution of Caribbean artistes’ music.

Ivan Berry, a recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Urban Music Association of Canada in 2000 and former Sony Record (CANADA) manager, is the CEO of C2W Music Ltd.

Prez’s first record released by C2W was “Encourage”, a song which features Grammy award rapper Drake, whose voice is on the hook of the chorus and London rapper Valance Hero.

“That was a real big record and it’s successful in Canada right now, although not so much in New York and Europe for now,” the artiste said.

Apart from his breakthrough on the international market, Prez says he’s also managed to “hook up” with a few local rap and hip hop artistes here as well and already he’s doing collaborations with them.

He said it is “a blessing” to be able to work with “talented artistes” like himself.

“If Summer Was My Girlfriend” is one of Prez’s newest tracks for the summer and features local young and upcoming singer, 15-year-old Fitz of the group New Stars.

“I met Fitz through Mark Cyrus and I heard him and just took a great liking to this young guy. He’s 15 years old, very ambitious and talented kid.

“Right now all the new records you’ll be hearing from me will feature Vincy artistes or them featuring me. I want to make sure that the world understands that as small as St Vincent is, we got plenty, plenty talent,” he added.

Committed to assisting his fellow Vincentian artistes interested in the hip hop genre, Prez has also launched a music group, Hype Squad, which assists young and upcoming artistes in the recording studio.

“It’s nothing big right now, but what we do is help artistes who are members of the group, such as Ftiz and Ray, Hype with some studio time where they can record their songs,” he explained.

Hip hop/rap lovers who haven’t heard Prez’s music can log on links such as soundcloud.com, youtube.com as well as his Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/akene.keizer. (AA)