Artist interview: rapper and producer, Half Decent
Half decent is an Oxford born, London based rapper and producer who puts rapid fire flows and thought provoking lyrics at the forefront of his eclectic sound.
Why are you passionate about your work?
I'm a rapper and producer who raps on any style or genre of music. I've been making music since I could remember and I have a real love for writing lyrics. Everything I write about is either something I've been through or something I have seen in my life. So my music is often a form of personal reflection.
What are you promoting at the moment?
This year I'm putting out new videos to show my range as an artist. These can all be seen on www.halfdecentmusic.com.
The first of these was released on New Year's day and is a song called 'Broken Britain'. The video has been doing great and hit over 40,000 views. You can view it here:
I also have a new 7 track EP planned for release soon.
What is it that sets your work apart from other rappers and producers?
To begin with, it all comes from a feeling and I love what I do. I'm not afraid to put my soul on a track and show the listener everything that I've been through. I also rap to any style of music and can rap quite fast on Drum and Bass but still be clear and understandable.
As well as your website, where else can people find you online?
Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and Instagram as 'halfdecentmusic'. You can also search Half Decent on Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, Xbox live or almost any music distribution site and you will find all 8 of my releases.
Where have you found the biggest audience? Which platform?
YouTube has been very good because of the visual content I have been releasing lately. Most people visit my website (www.halfdecentmusic.com). With all of my music being available on multiple platforms it depends on the listener's habits. I have just launched a Spotify Playlist called 'Half Decent's Day Off' where I put in some of my own music and my personal influences. I would highly recommend that for Spotify users.
How do people find you online?
Live shows have always been the biggest way for me to build an audience. The live show is passionate, energetic and a lot of fun! I really enjoy keeping in touch with people on Twitter or Facebook after they have seen the show and even send out some new 'Demo' tracks to see if I'm on the right track with my new material. I'm leaning towards Twitter and Instagram more than Facebook because I feel I can be myself more. As strange as it sounds Facebook seems a lot more like a place people share funny things they have seen more than a chance for them to socialize.
Do you pay for advertising either online or in other media?
I have not yet paid for online advertisement. I find it best to see the rewards of your hard work and build a fan base. Flyers, CD's, Stickers, Press Kits and T-Shirts are the main products that I've purchased that could be considered advertising.
Are your followers very local? Where have you found your main audience?
Oxford, my home town. Surprisingly, Canada gives me a lot of streams online and the very first CD I sold was online to someone in Australia.
Do you have any techniques to convert followers into customers?
The value for me is not actually in the pound signs. I make my music hoping that people may relate to it or enjoy it so I'd like to hope none of my followers are customers. If they come to see me live or support me by purchasing a CD or download my music then great, but I would still do it. If someone heard my song and loved it I wouldn't be angry if they didn't pay for it.
When you’re marketing your work what are the most important things that you focus on?
Consistency and good quality. Almost everything is instant these days so I just want to keep releasing good music.
Do you use scheduling to stay on top of your social media presence?
When a release is coming up I will schedule a few posts, such as a few promos before and then the actual release when it happens. I'm very cautious that I might flood people’s timelines or Twitter feeds that I don't like doing more then 3 scheduled posts a week.
For people who are trying to get their music out there, what advice would you offer?
1. Don't think it has to be polished. Sometimes the best songs or music videos have been made on an iPhone in 1 take.
2. Speak to your audience. It is 'Social Media' for a reason so it's worth talking to the amazing people that like your work.
3. Make sure you don't stop having fun.