Let’s Meet Dezmond
Dezmond-Dane Michel’s stage name is “Dezmond”. He’s a 20 year old rapper based out of Boston, MA, and currently a Sophomore at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Dezmond has been doing music for over 8 years, exploring everything from songwriting, producing, singing, rapping, engineering, and instrumentation. All Dezmond wants is for his talents to not only be acknowledged, but to be given a platform in which he can lift up all the people in his life who have sacrificed or taught him a lesson that helped him make it to a point of success where he can say, “Thank you for everything, allow me to show you just how thankful I am”.
Be sure to go listen to his music on SoundCloud, you won’t be disappointed!
What inspires you to write your music?
“A couple of things really inspire me to write music, but I’d say the biggest thing is the opportunity to really affect the lives of a lot of people, in a positive manner. I love music strictly because it not only acts as an outlet to my frustrations and shortcomings, but because I know if I do this the right way, I will have the opportunity to change lives of people who feel as if they have nothing to work towards or live for. That to me, is more important than anything in the world. And also, just making the people around me proud – friends, family, people who appreciate my music -, that really drives me. It makes me want to go ten times as hard so I don’t disappoint them in any way, shape or form, and I’ll be able to really thank them when (God willing) this all works out in the end.”
Who is the biggest rap influencer to the music you write?
“Just singling one out is a bit tough! There are a lot of people I draw inspiration from, and that may be relatively prevalent in the way I write my music. Artists like Mick Jenkins, Logic, Bishop Nehru, Nyck Caution, Jon Bellion, Sylvan Lacue, & Isaiah Rashad, just to name a few, are artists who make music that I look forward to one day being on their level of musical ability and notoriety. But if I could name the biggest inspiration, it would have to be a tie between Andre 3000 of Outkast, or Lupe Fiasco. From the way his lyrics were formatted to not only be nearly impossible to replicate, to the extremely high quality of music he is always able to put out, to his writing ability being one of the most prolific of all time (in my opinion), to his likability as a person And an artist, Andre 3000 is what I aspire to be in all aspects. Outkast as a group brought the focus back to song making with lyrical ability, and catchy hooks, without sacrificing the quality or integrity of the artist, and I admire that and hope to emulate that formula in my generation. Lupe Fiasco’s music (more specifically his album The Cool) was the first time that something really captivated me, and immersed me into a world viewed from another person’s perspective. From his amazing lyrical ability, to his powerful political messages, and his love for different kinds of cultures worldwide, really makes Lupe Fiasco not only a massive influencer on my music, but one of my personal favorite artists of any genre, or any time period.”
What makes you different from all the other rappers getting into the rap scene?
“Honestly, I think it’s my desire to connect with people first. And not on a “hey what’s up” kind of level, but on something more personal, more emotional. I want my music to be powerful enough to save lives, or influence other people to really do what they feel is their “calling” in life. Granted, I have the utmost confidence in my lyrical ability, my song making skills, my vocal presence, and my talents overall as an artist. But I feel like what really draws people to me, and separates me from the rest of the rappers in my age range, and any other up and comers, is my message, and what I stand for as a person. The music would hopefully be the reason I get their interest, but my quality and content of character is what I hope would help make them a lifelong fan of mine.”
What can we expect from you in the near future?
“I have a few things in the works! A few more singles coming out before one of my two debut EPs releases. There’s no release date set just yet for the first EP, but it’s coming sooner than later! The title is “NME”, and I can assure you it’s something you’ll be listening to for the summer! The lyricism will always be there, but I want to drop this before, as a nice transition into the more lyrical, more thought provoking EP that comes out later this year as well.”