What's up Leafers? Welcome to the latest edition of On the Rise where we interview upcoming hip hop talent. Today's guest is hip hop artist, Kotah. Kotah is straight out of Fort Worth, Texas. His style is very raw and bar heavy. It gives us a raw nineties feel but yet it's still contemporary. Kotah's been making waves in Texas with his sound so we decided to tap in with him. We recently locked in an interview where we discuss his musical origins and unique style. Check out the interview below.
Westleaf Staff: What's up Kotah? Your sound is dope. When did you start making music?
Kotah: I started making music at just 9yrs old, when I taught myself how to play piano and read and write music. By 2018, I Joined a group of very inspired and driven artists who went
by the name BAN. I am currently working around the clock day in and day out to thrive and make a much needed splash in the industry.
Westleaf Staff: Nice. You've been grinding for some years. Keep it up! What city do you represent?
Kotah: Cowtown, Baby! AKA Fort Worth, Texas.
Westleaf Staff: Cool! Shout out to Texas! There's been loads of talent coming out of there lately. So how did you create your stage name?
Kotah: My Full Name is Dakotah. As a kid everybody called me, Kotah (I suppose my name was hard to figure out because the spelling). When I joined BAN I decided that I wanted to go by GK aka General Kotah which allowed me use my name in wordplay to build bars (General meaning I’m giving you all of me). As I matured as an artist I decide to drop the "General". Now I go by Kotah because I feel it has more of a professional ring to it.
Westleaf Staff: Nice. Kotah is definitely a dope name! It's authentic as well because it's your actual name. I love to hear about the evolution of an artist's name. You can always see the growth in them with every name change. How did your early life shape your interest in music?
Kotah: I grew up in a single parent household supported solely by my mother. Because of this I was forced to grow up faster than the average child. Growing alongside my mother (her being only 18 when she had me) allowed me to see a full picture of the world as I was just beginning to step into it. Yet, most of the struggles I’ve endured throughout my life have only pushed me to become better. Whether that be day-to-day as a person or as an artist in the industry. In my darkest hours music has always been my coping mechanism.
My breathing space, and my voice. Music has allowed me to understand and at times, Be I've always had music when I thought nobody would listen. I was always taught music is the language of love and that it's a universal language. Music provided a family for me . Music provided a way to make me feel like I wasn't alone anymore. Music saved me.
Westleaf Staff: That's dope. I can see that music has impacted your life in a positive way. Salute to that for sure. So who is your biggest Musical influence?
Kotah: My adopted brother Lane Harkness a.k.a. Haze.
He was the one who really pushed me and got me to start writing and being confident in my own abilities. He also was the first of us to actually start creating music to cope with our environment. Without him I couldn’t and probably wouldn’t be here today. Not only is he one of the best artists of our generation but he's also one of the most loyal and strongest friends I’ve ever been blessed to have in my circle. He truly always and forever will be an inspiration to me and many others.
I credit Haze primarily along with:
Loony Tha Foe
And Louis Armstrong
Westleaf Staff: Shoutout to Haze!. Also, your list is super stacked. Those are some great artists to draw inspiration from. Dope! So what's been the defining moment in your music career thus far?
Kotah: From performing on stage, to making tracks with Wu-Tang Clan's Killah Priest.
I still think the two most defining points for me were joining the music groups, BAN & Ord!naryOnes. They provided me with the platform and support to make us more than a music group…..we became a family. Both have so much potential and it’s an honor to work with even so many great artists. Shout out to 2 of the leaders and members KC Jamar and Quess.
They’ve always pushed and kept us focused on the common goal at hand here.
KC Jamar showed me what family was, and through Quess, I’m learning anything is possible with enough work and effort.
Westleaf Staff: Nice to see you have a dope tribe with you. So what makes you a unique artist?
Kotah: The thing that sets me apart is my versatility and my love/passion for music and the industry. From singing R&B to Rapping like Eminem & Joyner, I’ve managed to make an array of different songs in different styles. Whether it be singing about my struggles over a piano
or being self-destructive with guitars, or putting out the next summer BOP, to venting through my lyrics, I've always been versatile. Kotah can simply do it all!
Westleaf Staff: Fire. You're super talented, too! So what does art mean to you?
Kotah: Art is a fundamental aspect of any society. Some say the purpose of art is to express beauty around the world. Others claim that the actual value of art comes from its ability to communicate the truth in ways that influence the viewers for the better. Art to me, has always been that expression and ability to produce through feeling without remorse or consequence.
Westleaf Staff: Facts. Very solid definition fam! Where do you see your music career going over the next few years?
Kotah: As of right now the sky is the limit, with multiple projects in the works, a business on the rise at Thirty Five West Records, and a music group with nothing but potential to grow
(Ord!naryOnes). I can’t wait to see what the future brings!
Westleaf Staff: You got the vision. It's your reality already! Before you go, describe music in three words for us.
Music is Love. Music is life. Music is freedom.
Facebook : Dakotah McCoy
Twitter : @Gkotah
Website : thirtyfivewestrecords.com
YouTube : Ord!naryOnes
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