6ixth Element is an emcee, producer, hip-hop artist, and entrepreneur from Denver, Colorado. He began making hip-hop at the age of 14. He studied Audio Engineering and Music Business at KMG Studio in Boulder, Colorado after graduating from high school and starting a family. He has formed his record label, New Golden Era Hip-Hop, using the abilities he has gathered over the years, and is ready to present his brand of hip-hop to the globe.
“Spiritual Form,” produced by Anabolic Beats, takes boom-bap hip-hop to a spiritual level. The song starts with a soulful sample that charms the listener before dumping slammin’ beats and mind-bending words by 6ixth Element about existence and the human condition. Listen closely when the 6ixth Element demonstrates his “Spiritual Form.”
Although 6ixth is not a Buddhist or claims himself as a conscious rapper, he is motivated by Buddhist principles and enjoys spreading positivity through his music. “Spiritual Form” was written to assist the listener in confronting their fear of the unknown, shedding their egos, and focusing on what is most important. Check out the song and the exclusive interview below:
1. Can you tell us a bit about where you come from and how it all got started?
6IXTH ELEMENT: I grew up around music. MY Dad played guitar in multiple bands as I was growing up. Eventually,I started programming beats and rapping, and I became hooked on the process of creation.
2. Did you have any formal training or are you self-taught?
6IXTH ELEMENT: As an emcee, I am self-taught. I did go to school for Audio Engineering and Music Business at KMG Academy in Boulder, CO.
3. Who were your first and strongest musical influences and why the name ‘6IXTH ELEMENT’?
6IXTH ELEMENT: Lyrically, Canibus was once of my first big influences in hip-hop. His lyricism blew me away because, up until that point, I had never heard anyone put words together like that. It wasn’t too long after I heard Canibus and JMT that I fell in love with underground hip-hop. I started going by 6ixth Element, because I feel that hip-hop is all about growth. Hip-hop helped me grow, and it is my obligation to help the culture grow.
4. What do you feel are the key elements in your music that should resonate with listeners, and how would you personally describe your sound?
6IXTH ELEMENT: Somone once described my sound as “Boom-Bap Dad Shit.” I like that term and have since adopted it. I’m usually either on some relatable raps, or some anti-hero with a God complex type-shit. Depends on how I’m feeling that day.
5. With social media having a heavy impact on our lives and the music business in general, how do you handle criticism, haters, and/or naysayers in general? Is it something you pay attention to, or simply ignore?
It takes thick skin to put yourself out there. There’s always going to be relatives and associates telling you to give up, or showing envy. I cut them off immediately. I ignore random haters as well, but I actually listen when someone criticizes me. Random people are honest, unlike friends and family. That drives me to get better.
6. Do you think is it important for fans of your music to understand the real story and message driving each of your songs, or do you think everyone should be free to interpret your songs in their own personal way?
I would like for people to interpret my music in way that it makes sense for them. Music would be boring if it were so straight-forward that we all took the same meaning from a song.
7. Do you feel that your music is giving you back just as much fulfillment as the amount of work you are putting into it or are you expecting something more, or different in the future?
I think that you would be hard-pressed to find any artist who is completely satisfied. It’s the nature of an artist to want to be better or do more. That being said, I am proud of what I’ve accomplished, and the process is fulfilling.
8. Could you describe your creative processes? How do usually start, and go about shaping ideas into a completed song? Do you usually start with a tune, a beat, or a narrative in your head? And do you collaborate with others in this process?
This varies from track to track, but usually I start with a beat, whether I make it myself or get it from another producer. Then I’ll develop the narrative and start writing bars. I’m really picky with beats. If the narrative doesn’t develop quickly, I move on. Once I find it though, the songs pretty much write themselve.
9. What has been the most difficult thing you’ve had to endure in your life or music career so far?
6IXTH ELEMENT: Getting out of survival mode. It’s hard to make music when you have to make sacrifices to survive.
10. On the contrary, what would you consider a successful, proud or significant point in your life or music career so far?
6IXTH ELEMENT: Raising my son to be a lil’ badass hip-hop heathen. 😈✌
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Photo credits: Jasmine Huff