Donny Skhi takes chances with his music and it looks like it is paying off in the end. When Donny switches up his style in his songs, whether it be singing on one track or incorporating singing and rapping, it is something listeners have heard before, but Donny’s voice stands out. Donny Skhi got his start in a group, Black Market Money Gang, and now he is branching out into a solo career. With his debut studio album, Young Empire, it is a true statement on being young, having fun, and taking control over your future. And Donny is doing just that! It is his time to shine.
I got the chance to speak with Donny about his influences, his debut, Young Empire, and a big show he has lined up next month.
On being a musician:
“The reason why I wanted to do [music] is because it is like an outlet for me. Basically I want to put my stuff out there and have people really relate to it. I think I promote something positive that people can get into. In the end, I do want to make a career out of what I do. I love the lifestyle of being in the studios and being on the road. It’s really fun and something I really enjoy.”
On his influences:
“Kanye West, was definitely a big influence. Even til this day far as rap goes, it has always been Kanye West. I like A$ap Rocky and Wiz Khalifa. I listened to a couple of rock bands, like Linkin’ Park. I draw inspiration from a lot of indie bands.”
On his sound:
“People say that I sound different from other hip hop artists that are out now. So when I hear that I think of Kid Cudi. When he first came out, no one could really touch his style. That’s kind of how I am with my music. I do rap on my songs and I do melodies on my songs as well. I would say my sound sums it up as a singer first coming out and then do rap. More on the lines of The-Dream, Kid Cudi of course, and The Weekend; his is so diverse and different too.”
“When I first started, it wasn’t even an album. Basically it was just a [collection] of songs. So when I decided to take music more serious, I really wanted to drop an album. I wanted to whole package, get management, do shows, and do promotions. So the oldest songs made the cut on Young Empire and the newer songs was added like “War” and “We Broke Up” songs. I wanted all of the songs to represent the sound I was going for and it did in the end. I wanted it to be diverse where every song did sound the thing, but it all came together once you listen to it.”
On his upcoming shows:
“When it come to my shows, it goes two ways. I have my music and then I have “show” music. I’m in a group call Black Market Money Gang.We have been doing shows. But our next big show that is coming up will be when we open up for Twista in Louiville next month. That will be in Novemeber. Twista is actually on tour and he was in St. Louis–that’s where I am based out of. So that is going to be a great show and hopefully a big stepping stone for more exposure.”
On explaining what Young Empire is all about:
“I want to share with listeners the true meaning of Young Empire. It’s a message for young adults and teenagers to live in the moment.There are other underlying messages in the album, especially touching on relationships. That is my thing. I have gone through a lot of things with women. (Laughs). I’ve said that in a couple of songs. It’s basically things that young people can connect with. They should appreciate life for what it is and just live in that moment. I am asking people, “what’s your empire?” What are you representing or standing for? My Young Empire is being young, having fun and partying, dealing with relationships and exploring.”