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Meet The Musos: Get To Know Māori-Australian Rapper DAY1

17 May 2023 | 4:52 pm | Jessie Lynch

Here's what you need to know about DAY1 following the release of his latest single 'Have You Ever'.

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Hot off a mammoth 2022, South Brisbane-based rapper DAY1 is back with his latest track, Have You Ever.

The new release comes following a busy year for DAY1, who embarked on his first national headline tour in 2022, bringing his unique sound to stages across the country. 

The dates were followed by appearances at festivals including Lunar Electric and YKTV, while DAY1 was also tapped to create the official launch single for national radio station CADA alongside Mason Dane, A.GIRL and Reyanna Maria.

His new track is sure to continue DAY1's rise in the scene, with Have You Ever offering a thrilling throwback to the iconic era of hip-hop that inspired him, while also exploring new sounds and styles that showcase his unique artistic vision. 

The track revisits the elements of artists like 50 Cent who defined the music of that era with gritty street realism, catchy hooks, and hard-hitting beats, while also incorporating a fresh and modern approach to production.

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"I just had fun with this track. It’s not too serious, just good vibes, and something you can bop to" DAY1 said of Have You Ever.

It follows the release of 2022's MBAPPÉ, a bilingual banger with drill up-and-comer Kahukx. The track was a major success, nabbing a nomination at the ARIA Awards for Best Hip-Hop Release. The single was followed by an international remix featuring UK star Jay1 and French legend Gambino La MG, which dropped later that year.

Following the release of Have You Ever, we had a chat with DAY1 to discuss the inspiration behind the track and everything else you need to know about the rising rapper.

Give us the story behind your name?

I picked my name because people were always calling me a “day one” whether they had known me for a long time or just met me, people always were calling me a “day one” as I had always supported them or something from the start.

If your music was a flavour, what would it taste like?

Vodka to turn up and tacos for the Latin vibe.

Who are some of your biggest musical influences and how have they impacted your own sound and style?

Speaker Knockerz was the first melodic rapper I heard, and he was the first artist who made that popular. PNB Rock for the way he runs his voice melodically. 50 Cent for his hustle, dedication, and who he is as a person. A Boogie Wit A Hoodie, I just love his music and especially his catchy choruses which appeal to me more.

What’s been the biggest moment in your career so far?

Probably going back to where I’m from (Mansfield 4122) and giving back to the community and seeing how much support is still there based on what I’ve done, how proud they are of me and how far I’ve come already. It was a crazy moment.

What's the most unusual or unexpected source of inspiration you've drawn from when writing a song?

My ex going through my phone and having this whole argument over these fangirls messaging me and replying to them. So I went to the studio and wrote a track that’s not out as of yet.

Can you share a hilarious or cringe-worthy moment from your early days as an artist?

For my third show, I got too lit and forgot every word for every song and was just singing “yeah, yeah, yeah” while trying to hype up the crowd and couldn’t remember any lyrics. Since then, I do all my shows sober.

What are the top three tracks or artists you’re vibing on rn?

I’m loving Lil DurkAll My Life, J Hus’ album The 15th Day, and Drake's Search & Rescue,

What’s something that fans might not know about you?

That I’m actually a pretty quiet and shy person. People always expect me to be this big party animal and extrovert from my music, but I usually like to do things on my own most of the time.

If you could only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?

The Blueprint from D-Block Europe. It’s super lit. It’s one of my favourite albums of all time.

What's in the works for you in 2023?

Definitely a body of work, which I can’t say too much about right now. I’m also working on a clothing brand, as well as a script for my movie that I want to do.