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Slidin’ Thru: King Imprint

King Imprint is the turn up king. Whether he’s dancing, rapping, entertaining, pranking, vlogging, the Atlanta native always brings the positive energy and vibrations — something the world could use more of. Hailing from the Democratic Republic of Congo and repping his culture at all times, the “African Boi” has two words to describe his sound: authentic and different. Read more..

Currently based in Atlanta and influenced by everyone from Lil Baby to Migos to Yachty to Gucci Mane, King Imprint remains adamant about one thing: staying in his own lane. Under the moniker King Imprint, the 21-year-old is here to leave a mark, a lasting impression similar to royalty.

Which came first the music or the litness?
The dancing came first. It hit me as a young kid, 7 years old. After that, music followed, then Youtube. It’s just all combined, arm in arm. All that together.

How important is it to come to LA as an up and coming artist?
You don’t have to, but it’s important. Meet people, get as far as you can. It’s crazy
cause the West side is way different from the East side. But I like it. I like the vibe, the vibe is cool. It’s important because you travel, you see new things. You gotta experience it. You see your supporters in different states, etc.

What’s been the most memorable part of your trip this time around?
This interview!

At what point did you realize this music thing was forreal?
Once my first single “Benny Whip” hit a million in a week. Before I put that out, I was like “yo this is going to get a million in a month.” I was nowhere thinking it would do anything that good.

Was there strategy behind it?
Just be myself, stay true to myself. That’s what my strategy would be, being genuine and showing good art. Just putting out good art.

You just released your single “African Boi,” talk about your mindstate creating this one.
Man, I had to go to the studio and cook up the fire, fire, fire. To be honest, it was an inspirational song. Just plant my foot into people’s heads who look like me.

On “African Boi,” you say “you’re more than just a dancer.” Talk about that line.
It’s just a good line, a lot of people take notice. It says “my momma says get your bands up, go and get your bands up / Go and be a leader because you’re more than just a dancer / Life is just a lesson you just gotta find the answer.” [snaps] I feel like I’m a genius. The lyrics plain out say it — today’s society, people are stuck in one box sometimes. They find themselves in one avenue and not spreading their talents. If you have more than one talent, go spread it. Go do it. Don’t be just one thing. Don’t let nobody label you as one thing.

How important is social media for your career?
Social media is very important. That’s for any artist, especially if they’re up and coming.

What’s the best encounter you had with a fan?
In Chicago, I was backstage on tour. Let’s Dance The Tour, Live Nation hooked it up. That’s when I was just dancing, I wasn’t even making music yet. It was during rehearsals. I’m coming out, I guess this girl had got VIP with her friend so she could see rehearsals, what’s going on backstage. She ran up to me and jumped on me, and we both fell to the ground. It was a moment, like “yo it’s lit.” She was crying.

What do your parents think?
They’re messing with it. They’re saying “go as far as you can with it.” But African parents at the same time, they want you to be a lawyer or a doctor. I feel like that’s universal. At the same time, you gotta follow what you wanna do and have a plan for it. If you’re going to do what you wanna do, at least have a plan and shoot for it. Go hard, don’t slack. Go hard for it, because anything can change in a good 3 months.

What are some goals yourself as an artist at this point of your career?
Really, I just want to get bigger than what I am right now. Let the supporters just guide the way for me.

3 things you need in the studio?
That’s a good one. Water. My phone — actually, I don’t write like I used to. I just go in the studio, feel the vibe, and zone out. A comfortable fit… and candy. Anything chewable, I like gummies.

Any shows coming up?
I just did Super Bowl LIVE, that was in Atlanta. That was big for me because it was different. It’s the Super Bowl, but not the Super Bowl. They host concerts before that lead up to the Super Bowl. There were over 2,000 people, probably even more. It was crazy, I was nervous.

Do you get nervous?
A lot of artists don’t want to say it, but I’m sure they all do. I heard Chris Brown gets nervous so it’s okay. Once you get on the stage, you take over.

Who’s the most played artist on your phone?
I have a few, I don’t have one. I have to give it to J. Cole, Drake, Cardi B, Lil Baby, and myself. [laughs]

Dream collab?
I would have to separate that into 3 genres. Music, basically who I just named. Cardi B, Lil Baby, Chance the Rapper. For dance, Chris Brown, Soulja Boy. For Youtube, DDG.

Signed to Epic?
Yeah! He does comedy and vlogging. I have those types of videos too.

What advice do you have for someone who wants to do what you do?
Persistence and originality.

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