After launching his own independent record label WORLDWIDE FLEX ENTERTAINMENT along with the release of his highly anticipated debut album ‘Worldwide Flex‘, it’s clear 2020 is shaping up to be a monumental year for Felix the Great.
The Melbourne-based, Zimbabwean New Zealander also saw recent chart success with ‘Worldwide Flex‘ debuting at number 1 on the iTunes New Zealand R&B charts and 8th on the Australian R&B charts, making for Felix’s seventh consecutive placement.
Sonically, the record provides a collection of forward thinking tunes with varied Hip-Hop, R&B, Dance and Afropop nuances. From start to finish Felix the Great flexes his dexterous artistry as a singer, songwriter, rapper, producer and engineer.
With the album’s release, TLF managed to link up with Felix to learn more about his story, all things ‘Worldwide Flex‘, advice for upcoming artists, future plans, and more!
Check out the full interview below:
Who is Felix The Great?
I’m an ambitious self-made independent artist and record label owner. I’m the intersection between artist and businessman. I specialise in cutting out the middleman to fulfil my artistic vision.
Where does your passion for music stem from?
I grew up surrounded by music, my mum used to play a lot of cassettes and CDs of Eminem, BeeGees, ABBA, Enya, Bob Marley and Oliver Mtukudzi. I loved watching music videos on MTV and always wanted to be a star on TV.
Who are some of your biggest influences when it comes to creating?
My biggest influencers when it comes to creating are Gary Vaynerchuck, Kanye West, Elon Musk and SAINt JHN, because they’re innovative, ambitious and stick out from the rest.
Congratulations on the release of your album!
What does ‘Worldwide Flex‘ mean to you?
Thank you, I’m elated! The album means everything to me! To have a number 1 R&B album out before my 27th birthday in July is kind of crazy because I hadn’t planned on releasing an album let alone chart in New Zealand and Australia. My plan was to drop an album in my 30s but sometimes life just happens.
How would you describe the process of deciding which songs made the album?
The process of putting these tracks together was painful, first it was an EP with only four songs, then a two part album, then finally a nine track album. I was too caught up in trying to please the “audience” who don’t have a big enough attention span to consume anything for longer than 30 seconds without distraction.
In the end I went with my gut feeling and chose all nine tracks because they flowed into another. They also tie into the name Worldwide Flex which just means me flexing my range as a singer-songwriter, rapper and audio engineer on a worldwide stage.
It’s been amazing to watch you take the independent route and do practically everything by yourself, what made you take this approach?
Thank you! It’s nice for somebody to acknowledge that haha. I’ve always hated relying on the middleman or making excuses for not having resources or knowledge so I went and got an education in music production and audio engineering, taught myself how to play guitar, how to sing, how to rap, how to shoot direct edit music videos, how to manage myself as an artist and run an independent record label. If there’s something I can’t do I’ll always seek knowledge on the Internet and add that to my repertoire of skills.
What is the ultimate message you wish to convey with your music
Ultimately I want to convey that you can do anything and everything by yourself especially if you don’t have the luxury of collaboration or resources like the artists backed by the majors do. I want to convey that hard work pays off, that you’re not alone, I want to heal and connect with people through music. I want my music to be a feeling, a mood, a palette for each and every emotion or occasion.
What’s the best advice you would give to upcoming artists?
Listen to your intuition! Don’t let anybody tell you what you can or can’t do. Go against the grain and have patience, nothing happens overnight. Love the process, create music you love rather than chasing plays, playlist spots or worrying if your song will go viral. Create content and build your fanbase. Build your fanbase! I can’t stress that enough. Without fans your plays on streaming services don’t mean anything.
Looking forward, what else can fans expect to see from you in the future?
People can expect an acoustic version and remix version of my album before 2020 closes out. People can also expect a 10 episode Youtube series exploring how to write and produce catchy songs using my album as a case study.