Shai Sevin’s talents are multi-faceted. At once an artist, producer, songwriter and engineer, his creative output is an all-encompassing homage to hip-hop. Growing up in the concrete jungle of South West London, the grit of the cityscape would influence his future soundscape. Shai Sevin’s beats spit and snarl, lurching from his verses that contain the truths of London life.
Music had Sevin mesmerised from a young age. The vivacity of Bollywood music made its mark indelible when he was just a toddler, which was a constant presence on the kitchen radio. As he grew up, the influences of hip-hop deities Jay Z, Missy Elliott and Timbaland laid the foundations that would lead to a distinct sonic signature. Rather than pursuing the expected path of school and university, Sevin instead took a risk, and honed his burgeoning talents as a producer.
Shai Sevin’s mark is unmistakable, and has been left on Amplify Dot & Kano’s track, “Semantics”; Wretch 32 and Swiss (So Solid)’s “2-A-Side”, to name but a few. Sevin also produced and co-wrote the song “Chemistry” with songwriting kingpin Jack Knight, who has platinum hits with P-Diddy, Usher and The Notorious B.I.G. He was also responsible for tracks featuring on an anti-knife campaign, taking it further by casting reflections of the struggles of life on the city streets in his own work. Notably, Shai Sevin also helped catapult Jessie J’s career, introducing her to a rich expanse of urban sound that gave rise to her undeniable swagger. Shai Sevin produced and co-wrote ‘Big White Room’, which was a cut on Jessie J’s multi-platinum selling album, Who You Are. He also developed and produced Stylo G’s seminal breakthrough record My Yout, which is now considered a British classic.
“To me it’s about the journey not the destination,” Sevin states. Since the age of fifteen, he had worked behind the scenes, but now his solo material is, at long last, coming to the fore.
Where are you based?
I am based in South West London, born and raised. (Will Smith Voice)
How long have you been making music?
The cliche answer would be my whole life. In all true honesty, as a profession of some sort I would say early 2000’s lol.
What genre would you consider your music to be?
What inspired you to pursue a career in music?
Being told that Michael Jackson and I shared the same birthday. The legend used to make me cry when he went number 1 on Top Of The Pops.
What are your biggest musical influences?
I grew up in different households with different cultural backgrounds. So it ranged from Indian music to Reggae Music to Pop, R&B to Jungle and definitely Hip-Hop.
Are you signed to a label or are you an independent artist?
I am an independent artist and have my own Label imprint named “7th AVNU”. I prefer it that way as I am in full control of my artistry, it is more fun that way. Noone dictating creativity and does not hinder progress.
What have been the biggest challenges in your music career?
Not knowing how the industry actually works as a young teenager with the lack of guidance, also developing artists who had no shame in stealing the format that I initially created. There are too many to mention but I grew up with morals and a good heart, so I will just leave it there lol.
How many songs or albums have you released to date?
Personally I have only been releasing recently, but in the past I have played a huge role in people’s careers and records, whether it be writing or production, or just being on stage performing alongside established artists.
Can you tell us a few things about your latest release?
My latest EP release “Gimmi£ 5 Mins” is a monumental record for me as I only concentrated on myself for once after two decades. For me it has the sound that I believe in and doesn’t conform to what we hear on the radio or playlists that in my opinion lack identity. It was created in less than a month, recorded, engineered and mixed by myself in my bedroom. It was a fun process.
Any plans for new music or upcoming projects we should know about?
Working on a new EP, a collaboration with an extremely amazing producer, on this record I have decided to take the backseat on production and it is sounding like a match made in Studio lol. Working alongside an Independent artist and great friend Choze. He is really good and has his own feel and approach to his music, Definitely a project to look out for. Oh and I shall be working on an Album at the same time.