Off the back of his politically charged latest cut Mabo, Martin, Mandela, Canberra’s KG is reaching new heights. Preaching a form of inspiring, beat-heavy rap bred to incite change, he’s slowly but surely climbing the Aussie hip hop ladder straight to the top.
And the same could be said for Coda Conduct, the potent pairing of Sally and Erica who’ve all but taken Australia by storm.
Ahead of the Live Music & Justice show they’re both playing at the Chippo this Friday, we hooked the three up for a chat.
Two OG Canberra artists and three of the fiercest hip hop minds in Australia right now, KG and Coda Conduct certainly had a ton to chat about.
KG interviews Coda Conduct
KG: Your name, how did you come up with it and any meaning behind it?
SALLY: A ‘coda’ is a concluding event in a piece of music. It was going to be my rap name but when I said “How about ‘Coda’?” to Erica she was like, “Huh, like Coda Conduct?”
ERICA: Then we got booked for our first gig. They needed something to write on the poster so we told them “uh, Coda Conduct?” and decided to think of a better band name when the gig was over.
SALLY: Five years later…
KG: It’s great to see female artists in hip hop, how to you guys feel about being female in a predominantly male genre of music?
ERICA: We’d rather it wasn’t the main focus of our music sometimes. But that being said we really want to increase the number of other women rapping and we hope being visible helps.
SALLY: Yeah it’s got pros and cons. But hopefully one day there will be so many women in hip hop that being female won’t be the defining feature of a rapper’s career.
KG: You girls have an epic fast flow, who inspired your rap style?
ERICA: Outkast, Busta Rhymes, Big L, Watsky…
SALLY: Yeah I think we saw it a couple of times and were like “hey, we can probably do that!”
ERICA: And then all it took was a mouth training montage.
KG: Top five on your artist collab bucket list?
ERICA: J Cole.
SALLY: Missy Elliott.
SALLY: Savage Garden.
ERICA: Lee Lin Chin.
SALLY: Ideally all on the same track.
KG: Life as radio presenter hidden away or a musician on stage, what do you dig more?
SALLY: Music is the most rewarding thing ever, when it’s going well. But grinding in hospitality to pay for your tours and tracks gets pretty exhausting.
ERICA: Yeah so it’s so amazing having a job we love where we can talk about music all day, and then go home and make it.
KG: Most memorable performance experience?
ERICA: A girl and a guy had a backflip battle in the front row at our show a few weeks ago.
SALLY: Yeah there was also a dog in a pom-pom suit.
ERICA: Yeah that was a good show.
KG: What can we expect from you girls in the future, any exciting projects to share?
SALLY: All our projects are top secret but I can hint that one of them involves a small array of solar panels, a broad brimmed hat and a phone charger.
ERICA: Another prototype involves a kinetic battery, a fidget spinner and an eight year old child.
SALLY: We’re working towards some scalable models. But it’s all very hush hush.
Coda Conduct interviews KG
CODA CONDUCT: You’re a Canberra rapper! We really miss living in Canberra, how is the hip hop scene looking there at the moment?
KG: The Canberra scene has grown so much, there’s so much diversity of flavour and styles. With the power of the internet it no longer matters if you’re in a big city or not so that’s heaps cool for us Canberra cats.
CODA CONDUCT: When was the first time you realised you wanted to be a rapper?
KG: My love for hip hop started in English class at high school. I remember my school basketball trips when I would rap a lot of Will Smith songs to my mates, just trying to be the class clown and attempting to make everyone laugh.
CODA CONDUCT: Your new single Mabo, Martin, Mandela is great. It’s a tribute to three of your favourite black leaders in history. Who are your three favourite black leaders of today – and why?
KG: Colin Kaepernick- his protesting has started a huge movement and call for action to social justice issues in the US, to sacrifice his career to be a voice for the voiceless is the most selfless act.
Jay Z, especially his new album is really all about black excellence and being proud of your heritage.
Lastly would be Michelle Obama, I really believe she was the brains behind the Obama family (no offence to Obama). Her focus on health in schools and just her overall presence as a strong female leader – she’s a huge inspiration to me.
CODA CONDUCT: Would you rather have a head the same shape and size as a yoga ball or the same shape and size as a carrot?
KG: I’d have to say yoga ball cause I don’t think a carrot head would be that practical. A bouncy, massive ball head would be way more fun.
CODA CONDUCT: What’s the best dream you’ve ever had?
KG: I was chatting to Kobe Bryant and Jay Z about sports and life, they were my homies, life was great.
CODA CONDUCT: What’s next for KG?
KG: Supporting the GZA, playing Spilt Milk Festival in my hometown and finishing the album. Oh then a sneaky trip to South Africa for some touring!