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Known as a rapper with a comedic flair, Shattrholik's debut single 'Under The Influence' has exploded on radio and put this New Zealand-born emcee on the world map.

Hip hop means everything to him. Take it away and he feels like a nobody. This is the sort of eccentric and complicated person Shattrholik is. He's someone who can pull himself out of the backwaters of New Zealand on the strength of his mixtapes and, a few years later, have an international radio hit. From the days of casually throwing down rhymes with friends in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand to becoming one of the most respected new talents on the global music scene has been a tough journey to say the least. Yet, few rappers have proven to be more determined and capable than Shattrholik, which probably explains the long list of high-profile collaborators eager to work with this young rising star. Shattrholik's upcoming album features world class artists The Outlaws, D12 (Kuniva, Swifty McVae) and Royce Da 5'9). Reporter Alexis Adams recently caught up with Shattrholik to learn more about this intriguing artist and his plans for the future.

ALEXIS: When did you first discover your love of music?
SHATTRHOLIK: When I was nineteen, my friends were trying to be rappers. I made up songs to make fun of them and to have a friendly laugh. Not until five years later did I really start to love music and enjoy what I’m doing.

ALEXIS: Your song 'Under The Influence' has been a smash hit on radio for its third straight month. What was your initial reaction when you first heard your song playing on radio?
SHATTRHOLIK: I was very happy that it made it on radio and to have people loving the song. It was a surprise to me that so many people liked it. I didn’t think much of the song when I recorded it.

ALEXIS: What was the inspiration behind ‘Under The Influence’? Was there one particularly crazy night that inspired you to write?
SHATTRHOLIK: I wrote the chorus eight years ago when I was nineteen just for fun. It popped in my head a few years ago, so I changed a few lines in the chorus and wrote verses about the events of my twenty-first birthday. It is a true story, haha.

ALEXIS: Would you say that the mood of your other songs is in the same vein as 'Under The Influence'?
SHATTRHOLIK: There are a few songs in the vault that are kind of the same vibe as that song.

ALEXIS: How would you characterize yourself as an artist? (ex. Down-to-earth, serious, fun-loving...)
SHATTRHOLIK: As an artist, I would say I’m very serious with my music. Everything has to be perfect now. I am very fussy with attention to detail. I’m very focused. Music is my comfort zone- it gives me peace of mind and levels me out. I like to bring the beat to life and I blend my voice in sync with the music. I like to stand out. I am an emcee. I use music to express myself and my life experience.

ALEXIS: Some of your listeners have asked us if a music video for 'Under The Influence' is on the horizon. What can we tell them?
SHATTRHOLIK: I have not thought about a video because I did not think it would gain a buzz. But if it continues then I may have to do one, haha.

ALEXIS: What do you find most rewarding about being an artist? What do you find most challenging?
SHATTRHOLIK: To me the rewarding part of being an artist is the reaction from listeners. Whether the music has a positive or negative effect on someone, I love the feeling of knowing people have my music in their life. Music triggers emotions differently depending on the individual. I find what is most challenging is keeping focused on the current project I’m working on. I could be working on a song and all of a sudden, a million other ideas force its way into my head. I never get writer’s block.

ALEXIS: Who are your role models in music?
SHATTRHOLIK: Role models in music…well there are so many. All I can say is I have the upmost respect to the creators of hip-hop and the people who keep the hip-hop genre moving forward. People who made a difference. I can name a very long list.

ALEXIS: What advice would you give to young, aspiring musicians out there who are unsure and need guidance?
SHATTRHOLIK: Keep doing what you love doing. People are going to hate, people are going to love. Keep doing what makes you happy. There will be obstacles. It’s up to you to work through them or surround yourself with the right people to help you. Most importantly be yourself.

ALEXIS: What's next for Shattrholik? Is there a follow-up single in the works? If so, what can you tell us about it?
SHATTRHOLIK: I’m looking at moving overseas. I have not decided yet. I want to perform. I’m working on a mixtape called ‘Liquid Metal Saliva’, which has an old school and 90's vibe to it. It will be out soon. From this mixtape, I plan to release five songs: 'Medicine' featuring Layzie Bone from legendary group Bone, Thugs n Harmony & Morgan Kingi; 'No Comment' featuring Morgan Kingi; 'Dollar Signs' featuring one of Australia's best rappers named Fortay; 'Appetite' and 'Groovin', a remake of the UB40 classic, featuring Casey Burton. All songs will be available for download on Reverbnation.

ALEXIS: Excellent! I look forward to hearing them! I wish you continued success and good luck!


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