Earlier this year, Lay Zhang (LAY), the multi-talented musician and international superstar, introduced the world to the D.N.A Music Alliance, a collective of exceptional Chinese musicians poised to make a global impact with their music. Today, they’ve released their latest single, “21,” performed by rapper GALI, with LAY serving as the executive producer. This is just one of many upcoming releases from this group of cross-genre Asian artists.
In March, the Alliance, consisting of seven highly popular Chinese musicians, made waves with their group project “Cyphers.” Now, they’re back with a new subunit that showcases a unique style led by LAY himself.
LAY’s production skills shine through as he crafts captivating melodies, intricate beats, and atmospheric soundscapes that enhance the song’s quality. GALI’s versatile style effortlessly adapts to various musical genres, and his fluid flow, clever rhymes, and impeccable control make “21” a captivating experience.
GALI, a Shanghai-based hip-hop pioneer, is a rising star in the Chinese hip-hop scene, known for his thoughtful lyrics and connotative taste. His recent release, “Stay With Me ((因你而在)” with YIHUIK (苡慧), further solidified his presence in the music industry. Fans can catch GALI on his highly anticipated ATLANTIS tour, coming to Melbourne’s 170 Russell on Sunday, July 23, following his performance at Australia’s Splendour in the Grass festival.
The Source: How has your life and / or past experiences influenced the music you write?
GALI: I think making music is a part of my life, and it is complementary to my life. I think a lot of my experiences have laid the foundation for what kind of musician I want to be, and I always tell myself not to blindly follow and follow the trend.
In “21,” you mention someone named Ashley. Who is she? Why did you choose to write the song named after her?
In fact, this is a fictional story, Ashley also better rhymes with the name.
What was your favorite part of the song to write and why?
The last line, “21 against the wind when she stepped on the gas,” I actually imagined the picture when I wrote it. The whole song is more like a mini film for myself, and Ashley’s ending is very open.
What do you want other artists to know about you? Why? What makes you unique and sets you apart from other artists?
I am a contradictory individual, and I often overrule many of my ideas. From the previous self-disapproval to now I like this state of myself, because I think most of GALI’s art comes from the beauty of conflict, and I am also glad that I am a contradictory person who does not limit myself, and can boldly overthrow and put contradictions into music.
Who is your biggest artistic influence? American or Asian?
I think art comes from life and everyone’s different cognition and feelings of the world. It can be said that there are artists in many places who have influenced me, and I have many good teachers and friends in China, Lay Zhang is one of them.
It also made me a member of the DNA family, and I want to say thank you to music for bringing us together.
Do your other interests influence your art?
No, they do not.
What motivates you to create music?
The expression of emotions, because I am not a person who is good at talking in life and even some social fear, then put what I want to express in music, music is the most suitable carrier for me to express, but also a best listener.
Are there any artists you’d like to work with in the future?
I think there are too many, many contemporary artists are very good, even a lot of time I think everyone has very powerful and unconstrained ideas to show, art has no boundaries, mainly can collide with interesting, I am eager to cooperate.
You’ve played overseas before. Do you have any favorite places? Where else do you like to travel?
Actually, I am a homebody. Although I have been to many places, my favorite city is my hometown. I just finished the Splendor In The Grass Music Festival in Australia in July and my own special performance in Melbourne. Those days were very memorable and the fans were very enthusiastic. In the future, I also want to go to America to perform for my fans in America. And the United States is the birthplace of rap music, where you can meet a lot of music artists, can communicate with them music is a very cool thing for me.
What was your goal going into the American music scene? Is there anything in particular you would like to achieve?
I have been to Coachella Music Festival in the US before. I was very impressed by the stage effect and the live atmosphere. If I have a chance, I would like to play on the stage of Coachella and feel the different energy. In fact, now in China, there are also many very good music festivals becoming more professional and mature, and many American artists come to China to perform in music festivals. I think for every musician, it is a happy and desirable thing to be able to make your music and stage heard and seen in different lands.
Article written by Shawn Grant #TheSource