SweetNSour Magazine

Get To Know K-HAM CA: A very Revealing Conversation with The Hip-Hop Phenomenon

In the pulsating heart of Toronto’s music scene, K-HAM CA emerges as a new force in music industry, breaking a prolonged silence with a memorable return to the stage after a 5-6 year hiatus. Known for his catchy beats, K-HAM CA blends a gritty, golden-age Hip-Hop aesthetic with the laid-back allure of cloud trap, infusing each track with intentional depth.

In this exclusive interview, K-HAM CA unveils the inspirations behind his upcoming music video, shares insights into his creative process, and reflects on the evolution of his music. As he navigates the ever-changing musical landscape, K-HAM CA envisions 2024 as a year marked by visually compelling narratives and impactful live performances, all contributing to his quest to solidify his place as one of Toronto’s finest musical voices.

Q: Can you tell us about your upcoming music video? What inspired the concept behind it?

A: The upcoming video doesn’t have a huge concept to it to be honest. We got a cool venue spot to perform at in downtown Toronto and after taking a hiatus from music for around 5-6 years it was my first show back since then. Figured it was a moment, so we’d just shoot a video for one of the new songs at the same time.

Q: How would you describe your musical style and the overall theme of your work?

A: If I had to describe my musical style I guess the word meticulous comes to mind. Literally, everything you hear from me whether it’s an instrumental or the raps I’m saying, it’s all carefully crafted to sound that way. Everything you hear is intentional. Sonically, I’m really flirting between an almost grimy/golden age Hip-Hop aesthetic, mixed with a more laid back cloud trap sound/ones that are more aggressive.

In terms of theme, I usually like to highlight a bunch of stuff, too many to pick! Racial injustice/black plight, the going-ons in the world due to capitalism and structural imbalances, dynamics that i’ve observed/experienced regarding relationships and relatable things everyone goes through in life to name a few. Other than that I’m usually just flexing my ability to rap (laughs).

Q: What motivated or influenced you to pursue a career in music?

A: I’d say this is a mixture of two things. The first – being initially interested in music itself and then being immersed in producing music in some way. The feeling I get of creating music since playing my first instrument (the recorder) in grade 4 has never diminished and the satisfaction I get is just too good. If I can turn that feeling into an occupation in life, best believe I’m going to do that.

The second – motivation I have is my interest in contemporary art and going to exhibitions/galleries to see what’s on display. I like how different art evokes different feelings and emotions within the observer. I’m not really good at drawing or painting and stuff like that but I feel like my music is creative enough where each song is almost like a piece of art on display at a gallery. I basically try to emulate the same concept in an auditory fashion.


Q: Are there any specific messages or emotions you aim to convey through your music?

A: There’s never a continuous specific message that I try to produce in my music, nor emotion. I have a broad spectrum of different messages and even the way they are conveyed through my art may change. I might need to be super direct on one song, but then portray extreme satire for another. It’s always changing depending on however the instrumental hits me and what I want to say. Emotions change constantly as well. One song might have a sad/slower tone to it, while another is aggressive and makes you want to mosh. Again, just depends on the vibes of the instrumental.

Q: Can you share some insights into your creative process when it comes to writing and producing music?

A: I can’t spill all the beans so I’ll keep this short and concise. I usually make the beat first, might do a bit of sample digging to see if I can reconfigure some sort of loop. Then build the percussion elements around that till its a full fledged instrumental. I rap/produce so usually I already know what bars i’m gonna lay just before the beat is even done. That process can take random amounts of time. Sometimes it might take a day or two, sometimes it takes half an hour.

Q: How do you feel your music has evolved over time, especially leading up to this latest release?

A: My music has definitely evolved in every aspect I feel. In terms of production; I feel like my old beats were cool but now it’s like you can FEEL the instrumentals. I’ve gotten better at conveying emotion through the beats so now you really feel the themes I’m going for. In terms of rapping, I’ve gotten better at staying in the pockets of the beats and messing with different cadences.

I also let go of the ideal of always wanting to do only complex raps that are reminiscent of artists like MF DOOM and found a balance of straightforward/direct, mixed with the subtle complexities.

Q: Are there any artists or genres that have had a significant impact on your musical journey?

A: I just mentioned MF DOOM previously so for sure he’s had a huge impact on how I approach music. Madlib has as well. My two biggest influences are always going to be Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin though. It’s not even like you’ll hear similar musicality between my music and theirs but they are so impactful to me because they were the first artists I can remember listening to that was able to actually make me feel strong emotion while listening. That level of feeling is what I chase everytime I make a song.

Q: What challenges do you face as an artist, and how do you overcome them?

A: Sometimes I struggle with allowing myself to be vulnerable while being an artist. There are times for me where it’s hard to justify exposing others to what I do because at times what I produce can feel deep and personal. Especially when it’s at the mercy of public scrutiny. I’m also just a bit of an introvert so those feelings are only further solidified for that reason. To overcome that I just have to be realistic with myself and understand there is a bit of putting yourself out there if you’re hoping to build genuine connections which is what I want to do with my fanbase. I might be introverted but i’m also a realist so I just convince myself it comes with the territory.

Q: How do you engage with your audience, both online and offline?

A: Online I mostly engage through Instagram. I’m not too invested in spending a bunch of time on social media, so I’ve kind of picked that as the main medium to engage with others. Offline, I try to have small events or shows here and there around the city. Sometimes it’s paid, sometimes it’s free admission, and we can just kick it with whoever shows up and chop it up.

Q: What can fans expect from you in 2024, and do you have any long-term goals for your musical career?

A: In 2024 fans can definitely expect more videos. It’s easy for me to pump out music but what I really want is to propel that specific type of visual representation of the art. Also focusing on more live performances as well. Those aspects are key in allowing myself to evolve as an artist. Long-term I really just want to solidify myself as one of the dopest musicians to come out of Toronto. I want to be ingrained in the culture/history and make an impact in pushing Hip-Hop forward.

Q: How do you balance personal life and the demands of being a musician? Are there any rituals or routines that help you stay grounded?

A: It really just comes down to compartmentalizing all aspects of what’s important. Obviously, there’s only so much time in the day so some time for certain activities might catch the short end of the stick. It all comes down to being aware of your goals and placing time and effort into achieving them depending on order and priority. It’s impossible to do this perfectly so I just try to be satisfied with doing my best. I work a lot but I also have to make sure I have some downtime which I feel is just as important and those are the times when I’ll mostly watch anime or play video games.

Q: What role do visuals and aesthetics play in your music, especially considering the importance of music videos in today’s industry? Can you shed some light on your collaboration process with other artists or producers?

A: Visuals and aesthetics are incredibly important. I work closely with my good friend Nick to achieve the best output in those categories on the regular. I think the most important thing regarding that is authenticity. The visuals and aesthetic of any artist should completely correlate with what they embody throughout their art. Nick and I always hold this at the forefront when we work on stuff together and things usually work out as a result.

Q: How do these collaborations contribute to your creative vision? As an artist, how do you navigate the ever-changing landscape of the music industry, especially in the digital age?

A: Collaborations are important because sometimes that’s what it takes to unlock a stream of consciousness in your brain that you weren’t aware of previously. In many cases, this is what really allows you to take things to the next level. I’m always open to collaborating inquiries if the vision is in line with what I want to accomplish. Keeping up with the digital age is not necessarily easy due to how fast technology advances, but it’s still doable. I always try my best to be open minded to the landscape of movement within the music industry as a whole and just continue to finesse my own lane within that.

Follow K-HAM CA on Spotify to stay updated on the artist’s latest releases