Check out our new feature called Inspiration is the Vibration where we talk to creative humans that inspire us. This is a space where they can talk about the music that enlightens their creative vision. Kendrick Daye is an extremely talented artist that is tapped into a whole other universe. I’m amazed at how beautiful and powerful his Black Queer Tarot deck is. It’s rad to get hear about the music that inspires his unreal art!
What five albums define the ethos of your brand?
Lady Gaga “The Fame Monster”
Before The Fame Monster, Lady Gaga was a pop star to me. One of many. But after The Fame Monster she cemented herself, to me at least, as the last authentic pop star we’ve seen.
This album had such an impact on presentation; not necessarily how I present, but the fact that the aesthetic of you as an artist can be just as impactful as the art itself. Used together, they present a product that stands the test of time. I also love lyrics that are visual. I used the concept of ‘monster’ which I always viewed as a metaphor for how consuming a crush can be. I love the dark element of it being literally consuming. I’ve used that imagery in my work, specifically the line “he ate my heart” countless times.
Kanye West “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy”
“I guess every superhero needs his theme music.” Kanye is another artist that has married visuals and music to great effects. This entire album, but specifically ‘POWER’, is my theme music when I’m working on art. The equal amounts of ego-tripping on one end and frustration and disgust with oneself on the other is a sentiment I identify with heavy as an artist. The mania is useful when it’s applied strongest to something productive, like art. I like my work to be a meditation on where I am in my life at the moment. This was clearly a particular time in Ye’s life, and it shows in every song, every beat, every line.
Fiona Apple “Extraordinary Machine”
I am a ball of emotions. When I was younger, I was very volatile. Fiona Apple’s music has always been comforting for that reason. As she’s someone that has battled with that, but in her more mature age seems to have found a balance. This album came at a time in my life when I was learning to balance big emotions. This album inspired me to pour those emotions onto a canvas.
Brandy “Full Moon”
All my work is some way about sex, desire, and sadness. Since I could remember, I wanted to be somebody’s somebody. Brandy’s magnum opus Full Moon inspires the pieces that are my meditations on love, wanting it, finding it, going for it, and losing it all amongst a digital landscape that seems to look at romance, courting, and love as archaic. On one of my favorite songs, “Nothing,” Brandy says “aye, love is everything.” I agree.
Madonna “Bedtime Stories” // “Confessions on a Dancefloor”
Whenever anyone asks, what’s my favorite Madonna album, I always say Confessions on a Dancefloor. It’s her magnum opus. Literally, it’s a tour de force of an album. I’ve created countless pieces with this blasting on the speakers in my studio. It’s mature but still fun, and I live for an endless, seamless album. And, of course, my love for artists that marry visuals with music perfectly makes me love anything Madonna. She’s the queen of pop for a reason. But if you were to ask me what my favorite Madonna album is, I’m going with Bedtime Stories. The sleek stripped-down music is great for those somber workdays.
What two historic events or subcultures impact your art?
Honestly, directly I can’t even place one, let alone two historic events that have solely impacted my work. I think I’m an amalgamation of what’s happened to me and what the cards the world and society have given me. But personal moments have been more important to me than anything else.
If you could give one piece of advice to a young person thinking of getting into creative space, what would it be?
It sounds cliche as fuck! But, don’t give up. The reality is, unless you’re a nepotism baby, it’s hard work to make it in any creative industry. You have to look at your career as a marathon and not a sprint. There were so many times I wanted to give up. I mean, last week isn’t that long ago, but if I do, if you do, what’s it all for? Also, work on your craft. The industry is bullshit and will try to play you, just make sure whatever anyone says about you, they can’t say your work isn’t quality work!