I found Kev Decor on SoundCloud. Typical way to find music these days. I often find a track from an artist, deem it dope, and then move on. Sometimes I’ll listen to more than one but never get the feeling the first one gave me. It is worth noting that ALL of the artists posted on this site have more than one dope track; actually quiet a few. I think you know where this is leading. Kev has more than one good track. Way more than one. Actually, all of them are amazing. I listened to Confetti first and enjoyed it so much I decided to look on Apple Music for it so I could have it for keeps. I was ecstatic to see he had most of his SoundCloud tracks on there.
Confetti is still my favorite; but I thoroughly enjoyed all of them. A close contender to Confetti is his recent release My Way which also has a music video that I have included.
I wanted to chop it up with Kev to learn more about his recording process, philosophy on art, and much much more. He had very detailed answers which I absolutely loved. Give the interview a read below.
Hey Kev! Thanks so much for sitting down with us. How is everything?
Hey Julie, thank you for having me on FlowsForDays, it is an absolute honor to be considered. Everything is perfect.
It was so hard to completely prepare for this interview because you’ve posted almost SIXTY tracks on SoundCloud in the last 3 years. How do you keep up that work ethic?
To be honest, I never thought about it until you asked, it’s like “oh shit -I did that?” lol. When you love something and you believe in it, it becomes more about enjoying the process than the outcome and that’s what has enabled me to continue to create with this level of consistency.
Since the release of Tables about 4 months ago, each single has had some really interesting artwork to go along with it. Correct me if I’m wrong but you’ve designed all of them, right? What is the significance of a track or album cover to you?
Yes, I create all of my artwork. Initially, it was out of necessity; I couldn’t really afford to pay a designer 20-30 bucks a cover and I’ve always been inclined to cut the middle man out so that I can bring my own visions to life. The significance of a cover for me, is that it’s another opportunity to further expand on the piece of art that is “the song”. The art, for me, is an extension of that. It’s not separate from the song and it’s not just a cover.. its another piece of that particular work of art that began as a song. It all began sort of rough and has been developing since then. I have a system now.
Fans can also buy the cover art painting on your official website https://www.kevdecor.com. You even have some distressed baseball caps and a shirt available for purchase. Did the music or art/fashion come first?
Yes. The music definitely came first.I consider myself a creator, I mean that is what we all are essentially, but I enjoying creating things that seem to come from thin air for example in the form of a thought or idea. There is no artistic medium that I consider myself confined to, music just happens to be my favorite canvas of them all. Once again, the art and fashion began with the idea of expanding further on the music so that there could be something related to it and tangible. Those who appreciate my music will appreciate a particular cover art painting or shirt etc. I always tell people, it’s not that people want to buy a shirt that is made of fabric, what they buy into is the meaning that the product has to them and what it stands for. I believe that 100%.
What is your relationship with the art world? How does it inspire you to create music?
My relationship to the art world is pretty simple. Everything is art to me. I’ve always been an observer and very analytical so I understand process and have been reverse engineering things since remote control cars at an early age haha. I consider nature as the biggest and most inspiration piece of art that has influence me and my creativity. As far as the industry of art, ehh I’m not to crazy about it. I am a purist (idk if that’s an actual word lol) but I believe in the spiritual and energetic principles that art embodies and what it does for our existence as opposed to the business aspect. I understand business, but it’s not at the forefront of my direct relationship with art. Colors and juxtaposition along with the way those combinations tug at our emotions and deeper sensations; thats exactly how art inspires me musically; I examine that and then apply it to my creative workflow.
I was really happy to see that a lot of your singles are available on iTunes. It makes the covers really pop and if fans decide to download or add via iTunes Music they’ll have it with them on their phones and their computers. What was the motivation behind adding them to this platform?
To keep it real with you Julie, I chose to make them available on iTunes because I want to do two things: Be accessible and provide my fans with the opportunity to support the art that they enjoy and want to see grow.
Let’s get into the music. You have a very unique vocal style. Sometimes it seems as if you are crooning and other times just using your voice as an accompaniment to the beat. How would you describe your voice?
My voice is an instrument. As a producer and engineer you sort of develop a higher awareness of this over time and you start to consider doing less musically so that your instrument can be in harmony with the rest of the music as opposed to being “on top of” or “in addition to” the music. I love the rasp in my voice and the range of it. People have made similar comments as you over the years but it hasn’t been until recently that I have sort of come to realize some of the nuances of it that people seem to enjoy. Thank you!
Tracks like Dis Summa, 2.0 and The Feels have a feel good/island vibe. Is that the type of music you like to create?
Those songs I enjoy very much. They weren’t created intentionally, they just sort of flowed, all of my music does. All of those songs you mentioned just now, consist of maybe 5 to 10 sounds and came to me in less than 15 minutes. There’s a saying that a famous musician once said that goes something like: “When I am in the studio creating, I make sure I leave the door cracked open for god to enter to the room.” Some of my more well-received songs have been this way; went in, touched a couple sounds, a melody came to me and I cut some vocals that felt good and everything came together effortlessly and automatically, as if I just took the back seat of my own vehicle and something bigger took the wheel. As far as the island vibes go lol, I was born in Puerto Rico and am also half Dominican so those island roots and the culture is in me… sometimes it comes out haha. I like to create everyday life music, when you hear a record it reflects how I was feeling in the moment of it’s conception.
My absolute favorite track that you’ve put out is Confetti. It also happens to be my favorite cover art. You switch flows and volumes of your voice throughout and It’s been heavily played on my end since I downloaded it on iTunes. What are your thoughts on it?
First of all, thank you for your support on iTunes and for enjoying it so much! That has to be one of my all time favorite songs. I knew it was special the moment I began making it. Another super effortless creation. To keep it 1000 with you the only tough part about making music for any artist is whether or not to be your 100% authentic real self in that instant. That is the biggest and only battle any artist in any medium will face at one point or another. On this particular record, I won that battle and spoke my mind freely. It’s not a topic that is touched on too often and I feel inspired by that song every time that I hear it because what I am hinting at very confidently is that “hey, I am going to be alive when I die… and you should too because sure, you may be breathing but unless you are doing something with your life in this moment that you are truly in LOVE with, then you are not living my friend. Go live, don’t be afraid, don’t be angry with the world, just live fully. I am going to die, having a party!”
How often are you in the studio? What are some essentials while you are writing/recording?
Believe it or not, I was in the studio a lot more often when I was putting music out a lot less often. Now that I am launching new music every week, I am honestly in the studio much less. Sounds backwards but I think it has to do with what is necessary to exist in order for art to be inspired. As an artist that creates everyday life music, you have to live everyday life to be able to write about it lol! So I jump in the studio maybe once twice even 3 times a week but I’m very “in the moment” about it. It’s never planned or forced, it is always when inspiration strikes and then it becomes a race to get to the nearest microphone haha. Luckily, I have my own studio which I am very thankful for. You know, I am glad you asked this question because what I am about to say is crucial for any artist out there. I meditate for 20 mins before I record or get in the studio. I haven’t always done this but for the last couple of months it has helped me in ways I can’t yet fully understand myself but I know it has changed things because I have been writing for over 10 years now so when something improves the quality of something you’ve been doing for that long, you notice. Feeling connected to whatever you believe is the force that created you, is important.
I go in with a clear mind, no fear of judgments and confidence in my own creative power. When you know you are a slice of something that only knows “creation”, you understand that you have that innate ability also and all you have to do is believe that you do. [Here’s the important part] I used to really really try. This whole music thing can be tough as an artist trying to get out there. You spend 14 hour days recording and mixing and weeks perfecting what you feel is a masterpiece of a song. I used to do this, these were the LV BN BRK days and prior. When I began to let go and trust myself and my purpose more, I began to do less. In return, everything began to change.
Dr. Wayne Dyer has been a huge mentor of mine and he said something along the lines of “when you try to grasp water, it alludes you; when you are gentle with your hand you allow the water to be held and experienced.” Its about rigidity and gentleness. I challenge you to think of anything in life were rigidness is affective, nature is the most powerful thing on earth and it is all about allowing instead of forcing. When I began to allow my art to be and stopped forcing things so much, everything also began to fall into place. So now I’m in the stu like once a week and I’m flying. Do less and trust more my friends. I like to be alone in the studio, energy has to be right and thats about it. I show up and leave the door cracked open 🙂
About a year ago DJ Booth named you a #TopProspect. Nathan S. (the author of the piece) met up with you at SXSW last year and he seemed to really enjoy the experience. Has that DJ Booth cosign opened up a lot of doors for you? How has it helped or hurt?
Shout out to DjBooth. Yeah it was cool being recognized by them. They’ve supported some of my work prior to and since then. Nathan and Z and all those guys are good people. The SXSW experience with the Booth interview was cool because it was like “yeah I’m being interviewed at south by” lol but i don’t place much importance on things of that nature. I am solely focused on building with my fans out there in the world. Has it helped or hurt since being considered a top prospect? I haven’t noticed either of the two but I am grateful always.
Nathan also wrote “he’s determined to push his music further… he tried to experiment without getting too lost in experimentation.” Do you find that to still be true a year later? Have you gotten lost in it or have you found the right balance?
I never got lost, and I attribute that to having found balance in my spirituality. Not on some religious tip though lol more like meditation and studying the way the mind works etc. Things along the lines of what I just mentioned about understanding that you can not control life itself, you can however, control the way you think and how you perceive things. You become what you think about all day long. Allowing is the only way to get ahead and be present. You know things like this are monumental to anyone especially a creator that is hungry and trying to figure stuff out so eventually it takes a positive toll on the music as well.
You dropped the music video to Whole Time at the tale end of July. I can’t find the actual track anywhere. Is this going to be on an upcoming project? Speaking of upcoming projects, is their a full length on the horizon?
The Whole Time record is indeed available at www.Soundcloud.com/KevDecor and whether or not there is a full length on the horizon? Idk, but there probably is 😉
It’s been a year since you released your album LV BN BRK. Looking back, what do you think of the project now?
LV BN BRK to me, is a perfect album. Start to finish. It is some of my proudest work but I do have this feeling about it which is that I wasn’t necessarily in the best head space when I created that body of work. I was coming more from a place of Fear rather than Love. So although the music was great, I know now that we should always let Love be our guiding light and not fear. Wherever Love leads you, there will always be happiness at the end of that.
You produce almost all of your tracks. When did you start producing? Did writing/singing or producing come first?
Believe it or not I didn’t begin producing until late. I had already been writing since 8th/9th grade but I didn’t truly start producing until I was about 21 although I did have music in me before then. I took drum class and played from 5th to 10th grade. I feel like I was always meant to be a producer also because it was the musical part of rap that got me hooked when I heard songs from Dr. Dre early on. I was always good at writing, english class was my fav and best subject. I used to kill it in front of the class when it was time to read a story or poem. Shout out Ventnor Middle School haha.
How do you think your music has progressed since you dropped your first official SoundCloud song Just Seen?
My music has progressed in the sense that I, as a person and then artist, have become more and more myself. As time has gone by, what you have witnessed musically has really been the peeling back of the layers of an onion. With each layer that is removed, revealing a more accurate picture of who I truly am, my authentic self. That comes with love, happiness, no judgment, positivity, limitlessness, creation, light and confidence in my infinite abilities and origin. All the things that we are ALL, truly, at the essential level of our existence.
Your Twitter bio is listed as : Pushing Self Belief • Thoughts Are Things. What is the significance behind these two lines?
Pushing self belief is what I am doing through my music. In the future no one will work jobs they don’t like. Everyone will do what they love and they will be compensated by others for the inspiration that they give by doing so. There is evidence of this all over the world already and I’ve been fortunate enough to experience some of that for myself as well. People don’t buy my music because of the cool tones and vocal nuances, they exchange monetary currency for inspirational currency.
All I have to do is wake up and do what brings me joy and that translates into me providing a service in the form of inspiring others to wake up and do the same. It’s a perpetual cycle and James Redfield talks about this in “The Celestine Prophecy”. Thoughts are things. As you think so shall you be. We become what we think about all day long. These are age old facts that modern day pioneers such as Napoleon Hill have reminded us so beautifully in books such as “Think and Grow Rich”. It’s both a scientifically proven fact and one of my creeds that the things that you think about and put your attention on, grow into tangible things. I could go on forever about this but you ever pull up to the mall and say “I am about to find the perfect parking spot,,,, and yupp here its is, i called it”? You manifested that parking space. Your mental attitude and the energy you put out there always comes back. Life is simply a reflection of our thoughts. Thats life.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Hmmm… believe in yourself, love everyone, don’t take things personal and let the universe do the rest. Maktub!
Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us!
Oh and would love to do an in-person follow up video interview when I’m on tour close to FlowsForDays’ homebase! Love.