Have you heard of Mandala? I met this rapper years back and he's always been a straight up dude. Believe it or not this man has some sick battle rap lyrics and his presentation is that of an absolute show stopper! If you haven't checked out Mandala i thinks it's time to do so. With the release of his album The American Pope I think it's fair to say he ain't stopping till he reaches the top!
When did you first start making music? What or who inspired you?
I first began making music seriously after college, 2018. Before then, I loved writing rhymes and verses that I would share with my friends. I was inspired by rap artists like Eminem and Nas and also a lot of battle rappers.
If you had to end every post, story, or concert with the same phrase, what would you say?
What do you enjoy the most about making music?
I love being brutally honest in my music and showing people how I feel. It's relieving. I love letting people see the real me.
Is music something that helps you, if so than how?
Music helps me to understand myself. The bible says that "words come from an overflow of the heart" (Luke 6:45), so when I express myself through lyrics, I learn about the state of my heart. I learn about things that are bothering me or desires that I have deep inside.
What does music mean to you?
Music is something mysterious to me. It's obviously something we're drawn to as humans, but I think there's a deeper meaning to music that we don't really understand. Music is a gift from God, and when it is done right, it should glorify God.
If you didn’t make music, what would you be doing now?
Theoretical questions are sometimes difficult for me, because of my beliefs about destiny. I think I was destined to do music, so I'm not sure what I would be doing if I wasn't making it. Frankly, I'm not sure if I would still be alive, because music has given me purpose during those times in my life when I thought life was meaningless and there was no point in living.
How do you feel about the music industry of today's times? What would you change about it?
Well I think the music industry pressures artists to make music acceptable to the masses instead of making music that fulfills them. The message of many popular songs, especially in my genre of rap, are obviously not the most uplifting or good for the culture. I'm just hoping to do my thing, speak my message, and hopefully change the industry that way, however little effect it may have.
What would you like to achieve through your music?
I hope to find who I was destined to be. I hope to reach my full potential. I think I can be someone who influences others and puts them on a good path. I can be a leader. I can be a husband and a father. I think that pursuing music will help me become a better person for whatever future events come my way.
In your own words how would you describe your music and who do you think would enjoy what you make the most?
I would describe my music as unique. I think it is honest and is written by someone who cares a lot about cultural and religious issues. If you care about the culture and becoming the best version of yourself, I think my music could appeal to you.
If you could leave your audience with anything, what would you want them to take from your work?
I want them to know that I came from a very dark place, where I thought I would never be able to pursue my dreams and find purpose, but that now I have found something worth living for. As cliche as it sounds, following your dreams is something I would strongly encourage, as long as you're in touch with your deepest desires and what your dreams are.
American Pope on Spotify:
American Pope on Apple Music:
American Pope on Youtube:
His website: Mandalaraps.com