TNM – May we know you?
YK – Of course, I’m Kevin Jekwu Benedict but on stage I’m known as Yung Kevyns.
TNM – Describe your growing up experience.
YK – It was fun, like having the whole family love and cherish you because you were born when your parents never expected you. My family loves me so much just like every other person in the family, but I got that special pampering because I was told that after my parents gave birth to their first born my big bro Ben Jr, they found it difficult to have another child, after the long wait, I was born. The whole family roared in joy… And life continued. After awhile, maybe I was just 10 or so, my dad died. Life changed for all of us, it became the opposite of what we had.
It wasn’t funny, but to make it worse, about ten years later, we lost our mom. We became orphans, four kids living on their own alone. I can say that my growing experience is mixed with fun and grief, but that’s life, it’s never fair.
TNM – Tell us about your educational background.
YK – People who gave birth to me understood the values of education. They made sure we had good education, though not in the best school but the best affordable ones available at that time. I was supposed to further my education after finishing my SSCE but because of lack of funds, I couldn’t. My educational background is not catchy but then I’m proud to say that the little I’ve had can lead me. And having said that, I’m still going to further my education when I find it convenient to.
TNM – Did your education influence your being a musician?
YK – No I don’t think so. My education was one thing, my passion for music was another thing. They didn’t interfere with each other. But what I can tell you is that it’s because I can express myself because of my little education is why I’m into the kind of music I do.
TNM – Why did you choose to do music?
YK – Freedom! You get to say things the way you want it, I mean how you pass messages across to the people. How you express how you feel. It’s amazing knowing that you can create what isn’t there and it becomes reality. I love to tell stories, I love to be in midst of people with messages of hope and peace. The only way I thought I could achieve that goal was through music – another reason I got into music. It gives me a satisfying joy and inner peace singing my own songs – that is eating my own produce. It’s just amazing.
TNM – What else do you do aside music?
YK – My other job sounds funny, but yeah it got me here. I’m kinda proud of it. I sell cray fish, like C.R.A.Y – F.I.S.H. And to make it even more funny, I used to go to different markets, local markets for that matter. I also sell clothes, though it’s seasonal.
TNM – Where do you expect to see yourself in the next two years?
YK – I don’t really know but I see that it’s gonna be high. Through the blessings of our creator and the work we’re doing together with my crew. I believe in two years we’ll be very far.
TNM – Are you signed to a record label yet?
YK – Yes, De Monicas Group. Very wonderful family.
TNM – What’s your style of music?
YK – I don’t really have a particular style, and I don’t even want to be fixed to just one particular kind of music. But I gotta say I mostly do trap songs in the mother house of HIP HOP. I also do R&B and other kind of music.
TNM – If you’re not into music, what else would you do?
YK – Buying and selling business… I like it a lot. Another one is farming, in fact I’m going to do farming in the future, though in an industrial style.
TNM – What is your general view about the Nigerian music industry?
YK – Music industry in Nigeria has grown. I don’t have the correct data but I can place it on the top five of the whole music in the world. People have come to realize that we got what it takes, from High life to Afro pop, R&B, Hip Hop, trap and all that. We got them all.
TNM – What is your stand on the baby mama syndrome in the industry?
Hahaha, right now I’m all me. I got no baby mama. I have female friends I work with currently, but it’s all work, nothing attached. I don’t see the future, but maybe in the future we’ll talk about it.
TNM – What is that one thing you want to stop by all means?
Trying to make everyone smile… I realized that some people are pretty difficult that you just can’t please them. I’m working hard to move on from that shit.
TNM – What other skills do you have aside singing?
Difficulties taught some of us to learn many things. I know how to lay floor tiles, I do POP ceilings, I also do aluminum windows. I have experience on how to fill gas cookers.
TNM – Who is your mentor in the music industry (Nigeria and foreign)?
I got plenty of artists I look up to, so it’s kinda hard to just choose one. In Nigeria, I like Ycee, Kach, Yung6ix, Jilex Anderson, Dice Ailes, Tiwa Savage, Niniola, Wizkid, Ice Prince, Davido, Phyno, Falz is there… Olamide, Runtown, Mawthie, Kindwiz and many more.
Internationally, I like Rae Serrummund, Emtee, French Montana, The Weeknd, Sza, Nasty C, 21 Savage, Partynextdoor, Travis Scott, YoungBoy, Chris Brown, Remy Ma and many more.
If I’m forced to choose just one artist in Nigeria and outside. I’d say Runtown for Nigeria. But I like Yung6ix and Ycee too. Oh Wizkid and Davido are there!!! Man I just can’t choose because I just remembered Tekno. I’m sorry I just can’t choose one.
For foreigners? I’m not gonna deny my love for my two African brothers Nasty C and Emtee, man they got swags. Partynextdoor and The Weeknd move me too… But in all I’d choose YOUNGBOY NEVER BROKE AGAIN. My n**ga.
TNM – What’s that one thing that keeps you going on a daily basis?
Self love! Despite everything I encounter, I try to love me. I don’t joke with that. Knowing that I got wonderful family who prays for me every day is a turn on for me.
TNM – How many songs have you released in the past?
Just one, my first single HOLLA. Though we plan to release more as we keep getting calls that we should wait no longer.
TNM – What’s your plans for this year? music wise.
I just got into to public eyes, and it’s been wow so far. This year is gonna be huge even though I can’t say everything for myself but my team’s arrangement is to come out big. We got more to give you from De Monicas Group. And you gon like every bit of it.
TNM – What’s your definition of a good music artist?
That artist who do not only put together rhyming words to suit his work, but brings out meaningful lyrics that are wonderful. You don’t just bring out a song for people to only dance, you put meaning to what you say as well. A good music artist knows what it takes to get messages and fun across their fans.