Mez Thinks If Artists Want To Make It To The Top, They Have To Be Vulnerable
He may be a rapper on the come-up, but Mez has already tapped himself to be a multi-hyphenate creative force. The emcee and songwriter flexed his music video directing skills when he took on a massive project: J. Cole's "Middle Child" visual. You can also find the 29-year-old's name included on Dr. Dre's Compton as not only an artist, but as a writer who helped pen 14 of the 16 tracks.
“I love rapping but that’s not where it’s going to end for me. I see so much for myself as a creative," he recently told Variety. Mez, formerly known as King Mez, linked with Cole through Dreamville's Omen who played Mez's music for the label head. "Man, Cole’s at a point in his career right now...he’s a superstar rapper with a cult following," Maz said. "Like an MF Doom. He’s a cult rapper but just a star, if that makes sense. It’s hard to explain. He’s a fake underground rapper because he’s actually a superstar. That’s the best way to describe it."
The Southern rapper is inspired by artists like Cole who shift the musical culture and affect the world positively. When asked how Cole influenced his career, Mez shared that artists who choose to lean on vulnerability and drop the bravado rise to the top. "Sh*t from the heart is always gonna win," he said. "Seeing [Cole] and Kendrick [Lamar] be successful...how are Drake, Kendrick, and Cole at the top of the mountain? Even Drake, he’s in touch. The music he writes, he’s vulnerable."
"It’s funny because a lot of the music coming out from younger generations — the hits, the pop records — it’s not really vulnerable," he stated. "It’s a lot of sh* talk, but people who end up at the top are people with real sh*t involved in their records. You can’t get that high without that. People gotta love you. Some artists make music that people love, but very few artists are people who people love. That’s the difference."