To be honest, I have no idea where it really started. I remember being like 13 or 14 years old and listening to a lot of folk music like Bob Dylan, Elliot Smith and those sort of artists. At that stage, all I wanted to be was a singer/songwriter so i’d get home from school and lock myself in my room for hours learning some chords and putting together some real personal and poetic sort of music. I remember one of my first lines was like “these street lights guide me home, but what happens to them when the lights aren’t on?”. Hip-Hop really came into my life a couple years later when I heard some tracks from Lil Wayne like 6 Foot 7 Foot and to me it was like nothing i’d heard before, the energy and some of the lyrics like I remember the lyrics “life is the bitch, death is her sister, sleeps the cousin, what a fuckin family picture” being one of the main reasons why I got into hip-hop, I wanted to write stuff like that. It’s never been about making it or being an internationally known artist, it’s just about making music that’s dope and that people will like.
What would be your ultimate aim in the industry?
My ultimate aim would be to cross borders with my records, to connect with people that would never have even known I existed if it weren’t for the connection we made through the music. But I’m pretty content with where I’m at right now, I feel like I’m making some really good music, and I’m excited that I’ve still got a long way to go. I think if you asked me this question yesterday, I probably would have given a completely opposite answer.
How long have you been writing your own music?
I started writing ever since I can really remember, I got this little black book stashed somewhere in my room where no one, not even myself can find that has some lyrics from around 2006 so I was about 12 or 13. Some of the stuff in there is pretty bad though, hence the reason why its stashed away.
Who are your top three influences and why?
My two main influences are my mum and Johnny Cash. Me and my mum have always been close and she use to always be singing around the house and that and she use to work late nights and then have to wake me up at 6:30am the next day to get me to school cos she knew if she didn’t get me up, I wouldn’t bother going so her supports always been massive to me. Johnny Cash, I’ve always loved his music, but the main reason why he influences me is because he literally breathed music and he did what he wanted to do. I remember in his last interview he was talking about how after his wife June died, he buried himself in the studio and he didn’t stop really until he passed away. I guess I can relate to that, if I ever want to escape, I get into the studio and stay in there till I’m feeling good again. The last influence that was huge to me was Lil Wayne because he introduced me and got me into hip-hop, but ever since the Carter III I feel like his lost touch with who he use to be, and that’s cool if his happy that way, but I don’t really look up to him anymore.
Is there anything you would like people to know about your current release?
I just want people to know it’s just the start, I really wanted to incorporate my whole life in the last 6 – 12 months into one album and so people can judge it and think well its so random, one songs about this and another’s completely different but I guess that’s what came out when I finished. Hopefully people can relate and can really get into it on a more personal level.
Where are you based and what’s your local scene like?
I’m based out of Melbourne, Australia – if you don’t know where that is its down the bottom and to the right. Melbourne’s got a cool scene, its really diverse like there’s old school hard hitting hip hop heads, but then there’s this new school of hip-hop coming through and its really starting to take hold on a commercial level so I’m just really excited to be apart of it.
Who else can you recommend from your local scene for people to have a listen to?
I can recommend heaps of artists but Allday is definitely someone who’s making the dopest music around, and his stuffs still getting better.
Give our readers a roundup of where they can find you online and hear more of your music.
You can hear my music at www.soundcloud.com/gioay or check out my social media pages at www.giofficial.com. A video or two will be dropping soon too on my youtube at www.youtube.com/coolas4randomsymbols which I’m really pumped to start working on.