At the young age of 20, Bishop Nehru has been in the rap game for many years already. The young emcee has worked alongside the likes of MF DOOM, Disclosure and is even rumoured to have Nas executive produce his album. Whilst we await Bishop’s debut studio album, he recently released a new mixtape Magic: 19. We at True Too sat down with him on his Magic: 19 European Tour.
J: Is this your first time in Leeds?
B: Yeah, it’s my first time here. I’ve been to the UK like 6 or 7 times I guess, but I’ve mostly stayed in London.
J: Awesome, I saw in an interview that you came with MF DOOM and Ghostface Killa?
B: Yeah, that was one of my first times over here. It was amazing.
J: Are you into touring a lot? Do you like working on the road?
B: As far as music? Nah, not really, I mean I write stuff but I obviously can’t record it, so normally I’m just writing stuff I guess.
J: Congrats on Magic: 19, is there anything we should be expecting from a new album? There’s been a lot of hype about a debut. Is there a lot more of your own production?
B: Thanks, I’m probably going to experiment with some different producers but I’m definitely going to produce a lot on it. I also produced a lot on Magic: 19.
J: Yeah, a lot more rappers are getting into production, like Mac Miller and Earl Sweatshirt.
B: I mean, I’ve been producing since I was 13 so it wasn’t like anything big to me, but I guess I just took a backseat on my production just to work on it and get it better. So now I feel like I can produce easy.
J: Are you looking to experiment with more trap beats? I saw that there was a bit of a difference between NehruvianDOOM and Magic 19. There were more newer sounding trap beats. Are you looking to go more down that road?
B: I wasn’t like trying to experiment. I was just having fun to be honest. So if it’s fun to do, more than likely I’ll do it. I don’t really look at it like that to be honest, like putting it in genres. I just do it and think about everything else afterwards. When I was making that I just got the beat, like someone just sent me the beat and I was like ‘oh this beats fire!’ It’s like I went to an MF DOOM beat that I heard and I think is fire.
J: What inspired you to sample Kendrick Lamar’s Untitled 07?
B: I actually had that song done before I even heard Kendrick’s version or before his song even came out. He just dropped the untitled project and the producer of my beat DM’d me like ‘oh man Kendrick sampled it on his new project’, so I didn’t even hear it until the producer told me and the producer sent me that track like months ago. Months months months before I even heard Kendrick’s thing, I just didn’t put it out yet.
J: Have you got any thoughts on the new generation of rappers? Like the trap rappers.
B: Yeah I listened it a lot actually. All throughout high school. I wouldn’t really say I have any favourite artists but I like to listen to a lot of different people. Keep it mixed up.
J: I have to speak to you about DOOM definitely. What was the process in making that album? There’s been rumours about him not being able to enter the US.
B: I flew out to London, well I was already out in London when I met him and the record label that came out under was a London label so I was out there a lot working on that project with him in the studio and stuff like that. Flew out there for like a week or so. Got a real insight into how he works.
J: Are you still in contact with DOOM? Is he making an appearance on any new stuff?
B: Yeah! Um on records? Maybe. Maybe…
J: Nice. Are there any collabs in the future you’ve got coming up? You’ve worked with people like Disclosure, I thought that was sick.
B: Thank you. I mean there’s a couple tracks I’ve sent out to people. I don’t know what they’re gonna do with it, its pretty much on them. Most of the stuff is for their projects not mine so I cant really say anything you know.
J: Any dream collabs?
B: I guess Kanye. That’s a good one. Kanye, Tyler the Creator, A$AP, Wiz. People like that.
J: Finally, have you ever listened to any UK music or rappers?
B: Not really, only Skepta really… Stormzy and Lady Leshurr too. Grime is getting really big in the US.
Overall, the future looks bright for Bishop Nehru. Whilst continuing to work with big names like Disclosure and MF Doom, he has also showcased his diversity over the types of songs he can make and is having fun doing it. With some potential collabs coming out soon and big aspirations, the young Bishop Nehru has the potential to go right to the top.
For all things hip hop keep reading at True Too.
Interviewed alongside Elliot Ross from Leeds Student Radio