Q: “Leaders” is an amazing track! Not only does it have an addicting beat, but your lyrical ability is remarkable. Can you walk me through the writing process of making “Leaders”?
Heaven X: Thank you. I actually produced the beat for Leaders sitting on my yoga mat in my home studio, and it was one of the first ones I made after leaving the monastery. When it comes to writing lyrics, most of my inspiration comes from what I study. I spend a lot of time in the library. I believe every rapper should live in the library because words are our best friends. I like to write a lot too, and writing rhymes in the margins of my notebook or in the notes app on my phone is a big part of the process. When we put our busy mind on a clear piece of paper, we make the paper busy and the mind more clear.
Q: I love that although you’re a musician, you have an entirely different business dedicated to wellness. Can you tell me a little bit about Good Luck Yogi and what it means to you?
Heaven X: Good Luck Yogi is a meditation brand for kids and families. We’re creating custom-guided meditations, sleep stories, and calming nature sound adventures voiced by actual children on everyday topics they may experience, such as loneliness and anxiety. We’ve spent the last several years working with kids at their schools, homes, and even hospitals, teaching simple breathing practices to give them access to this lifelong skill. Meditation is normally seen as a practice for grown-ups, but we’re finding that there are a lot of super kids out there. Our goal with Good Luck Yogi is to change the world, and that starts with the future of the world: the children.
Q: How has being signed to Venice Music, a notable record label founded by music mogul Troy Carter, changed the way you create music?
Heaven X: Venice has unlocked opportunities to meet other artists in the space, and created spaces where I’ve been able to network with some heavy hitters. Working with the team at Venice Music has opened up access to new styles of music and collaborations. As an artist trying to build fans in the traditional music space as well as the Music NFT space, Venice Music has been a great resource for networking with web3 musicians, Music NFT collectors, and builders in this space. The Venice Music community team prioritizes working with web3 musicians to create a better music industry that supports artists with the tools and means to create deeper relationships with their fans.
Q: If you could collaborate with any artist (dead or alive), who would it be?
Heaven X: That’s a great question. I would choose Michael Jackson. Beyond our differences in genre, we share a common message of healing the world. Yeah, I would have loved to create something innovative with The King of Pop.
Q: What do you hope listeners and aspiring leaders take from listening to “Leaders”?
Heaven X: Since I’m a new artist, I’m just allowing fans to understand who I am at this point. The song “Leaders,” is a great way to share some of the heroes I look up to, from Malcolm X to Mr. Rogers. We only get a glimpse of these historical figures during standard school education, but when you get lost in a book, pouring over their struggle, it’s transformative to see how their adversity, sacrifice, and fearlessness made them brilliant, inspiring change-makers.
Q: What has been one of the highlights of your music career so far?
Heaven X: The highlight has been getting back into making music after living so many years in a monastery. I was a bit nervous when I first started, and I wasn’t sure if I still knew how to make beats. However, my muscle memory is very strong, and within a short amount of time, I compiled 100+ beats to use as fuel for my musical journey. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, I found a studio near my house that was still open, and began recording raps for the first time with a professional audio engineer. The experience was rewarding, and I saw Divinity’s hand at play throughout it all.
Q: “Leaders” is dedicated to those who have defined what hip-hop culture is. Who are your biggest musical influences?
Heaven X: I value Lauryn Hill for being undeniable in her truth and representing a higher cause. I love Tupac Shakur’s revolutionary mindset. I’m the biggest fan of Notorious B.I.G’s cadence and lyrics. There was a time in my life when DMX really spoke to me. I appreciate his God Consciousness and how he includes a prayer in every album. I’m also a product of the Mixtape Weezy era, and there’s no denying his genius. Of course, the list can go on, but that right there is my top 5.
Q: What’s next for you? Any projects in the works?
Heaven X: I’m stoked about recording new music again. I believe I’ve grown a lot sonically since the last time I was in the studio. I’m just waiting for the moment where I can block out a few months to completely dedicate myself to new tracks. Until then, I’m stacking up on beats and rhymes.
Interviewed by Melissa Cusano
FOLLOW HEAVEN X: