Hip Hop artist NXICON talks Acronyms, Latest Music, & Challenges in an Exclusive Interview w/ Mistah Wilson
"It's always been me on the grind and hustle 100% believing in me. Sometimes, that's all you have and I've adjusted and been cool with that."
NXICON: Thanks for having me! It's an extreme honor when a magazine such THAWILSONBLOCK Magazine takes notice of you and wants to interview you! I appreciate the opportunity. I'm originally from Grand rapids, Michigan and moved to Atlanta because the atmosphere for my music wasn't what I needed in order to strive in Grand Rapids. I had been in a few groups at the time but it always seemed to dwindle down to myself and a DJ. The three main ones were DJ BKO out of Lansing, DJ Mikey Mike of the Other Bros. and DJ Rose both out of Grand Rapids, but I was more heavily influenced by the West Coast style of rap where everyone else was more East Coast. I was under contract with an independent label, KJ Records but due to discrepancies with the contract, I had to opt out and that gave me my opportunity to explore new territories. I began self producing my own releasing my own projects and am currently up to my 7th independent release that's currently untitled.Being an independent artist has opened so many doors and opportunities for me. I push for any and every artist to be independent! It's a risk but it's well worth it! I've been blessed to have my music featured on 10 compilations, a jewelry store overseas, a web series "UNDERCOVER DETECTIVE" by April Whitaker and an independent film, "THE LIST" by Prime Factor Films. My current release was called "YOUNG GOD". I started my own production company called KUUNTAAR MUSIC which is the parent company for my own label ANX RECORDS and MEDIANTIX Film and Photography. I'm also and actor of both stage and film and an author of 3 novels. So I stay busy and involved in as many things as possible to get my name and brand out there. I'm currently in the process of putting together my first short film to which I'm also producing the music for as well. Music has been my therapy and I love the whole process from beginning to end.
Mistah Wilson: First off, I want to talk about the name. What is NXICON an acronym for and what message are you trying to send with it?
NXICON: You're the first person to ask me that...lol....NXICON is definitely an acronym. It stands for No eXcuses I Can Overcome Negativity. I came up in the streets of Lansing and Grand Rapids and saw a lot, did a lot. Risked a lot. I had a lot of negativity not only from those streets but from people in my life that I had to overcome to be the person that I am. We all go through and some of us give in to the negativity. I'm a testament that anything negative in your life doesn't have to own and/or control you. You can take that energy and refocus into something positive but that had to start within me. I had to block out the naysayers and haters to believe in me first and foremost. Black males hear how bad, how weak, how sorry we are all the time. We're not going to amount to anything but being criminals and inmates. I almost took the bait. Gave up. Gave in to social pressure and the hateful atmosphere but then the music came to me and gave me a voice. A feeling that I could not only change my thoughts but the thoughts of others. We have to CHOOSE to go against the grain and stand up to make a difference. NO EXCUSES. Any negativity can be overcome if we start with ourselves first and listen to the voice in our heads telling us that we're important even if we don't hear it from anyone else. Prayer also works.
Mistah Wilson: How was life, and the local music scene, like growing up in Grand Rapids, Michigan?
NXICON: Life was life in Michigan as with any other place. I just felt that I wasn't growing as an individual or as an artist. I did have some wonderful opportunities but they just weren't what I felt was needed. Considering Grand Rapids was the home of DeBarge, this group called EURO-K, Iceman Ja and Robert S. You would have thought that it would be booming music-wise but it just wasn't the environment for me. Plus the life that I was living at the time was getting to me and I really needed to escape. I was heavy into the dark side. Running around with gangsters and the like. I felt like it was either hell or a jail cell and I wasn't looking for either one. So I packed up and moved to Atlanta.
Mistah Wilson: Let's talk music! You've already have a firm body of work. Tell us about some of your favorite albums and the theme behind them...
NXICON: I would say that my favorite was "IS U DOWN" because that was written specifically for an online label. And the title was because there were so many people claiming that they had my back and that were down for me but their actions and mannerisms said otherwise. They all have the same mantra that I've had since the beginning "DO OR DIE". That's how I live. either I'm down for you or I'm not. I can't and won't fake it. I expect the same and if I have to ask "IS U DOWN?" then I have to cut you loose. Loyalty is everything to and with me. All of my projects have titles that depict what I'm feeling at the time except for "THE MIXTAPE" that was just something fun to do. "REQUIEM" was because a certain persona of mine had to be let go and buried for NXICON to rise up. "SCORPIO" because I'm a Scorpio and I was feeling it strong at the time. "TRUST ISSUE" because I felt I had no one in my corner. "YOUNG GOD" because I was coming into my own and my latest "SOLJAH" because it's time for us that "claim" that we're SOLJAHS to raise up and take our positions for US. Our people. Our Future. Our Legacy.
Mistah Wilson: Where do you pull inspiration from when writing new songs?
NXICON: Lately, it's been from personal things going on in my life. Nothing makes a better song that your own personal trials and tribulations. I also draw from everyday life. Thing s that I hear on the news or on the internet. especially when it has to do with Black people and the fact that we're dying and disappearing at an alarming rate and no one seems to bat an eye. 2Pac and so many others spoke about this and were effectively assassinated for saying so. Now it's time for US to speak on it. Not "mumble" and whisper about it but put it out in the open. The only that things are going to change with and for Black people in Amerikkka is for it to START with Black People in Amerikkka. Our backs are against the wall and it's time to come off of it.
Mistah Wilson: Who are some key artists and musicians you listened to growing up that influenced the artist you are today?
NXICON: I've grown up listening to everything and anything. Key artists tho were Public Enemy, X-Clan, NWA, Ice Cube, of course 2Pac, BDP, who I was extremely honored to have met and spoke with KRS-ONE one day in Atlanta. He was the biggest influence in music.
Mistah Wilson: Who are some artists you collaborated with and would like to work with in the near future?
NXICON: I haven't had the opportunity to collaborate with any but I would love to collab with T.I, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre any artist that has a platform of positivity and is willing to stand up against oppression and brutality.
Mistah Wilson: What are some challenges and rewards you've encountered along your journey as an artist?
NXICON: My biggest challenge was having no support base like so many others. It's always been me on the grind and hustle 100% believing in me. Sometimes, that's all you have and I've adjusted and been cool with that. The people will come when it's time. In the meantime, my rewards have been many. Being in this magazine for one! But I've had my music featured in stores overseas, I've had them used in movies and in a web-series, radio play the list goes on. I'm humbled and honored by each of them because NONE of you have to give me this opportunity. But you did. And anyone that doesn't understand that doesn't deserve attention given. Everyday in this industry is a challenge but if you want the prize, then you have to go through the challenges. At the end it will be worth it.
Mistah Wilson: Where can people find and follow you online?
NXICON: I am on Facebook, Instagram, Holonis you name it. Everything is NXICON. All you have to do is type it in the search engine...lol
Mistah Wilson: Yo, NXICON! It's been an honor having you here with us for this exclusive interview with thawilsonblock. If you have any shout outs you wanna drop, let's hear it!
NXICON: I appreciate the opportunity and the honor. My shoutouts would be to Tami Baily, DJ Mikey Mike and Frankie J, The Other Bros., DJ BKO, DJ Rose, Jaquetta quashie and Peace Delightful Treats,my son William, his moms Cindy, The Davis and the Walker family and anyone else that's always followed me if it wasn't for them, there would be no me!