For those who have been following the South Korean hip hop scene over the years, you would have been familiar with MTV Korea’s funky and outspoken VJ, rapper Yumdda. After a few years on hiatus slowly working on music, he’s now back with a brand new album called Breathe 2. This much-anticipated album features 13 songs, all written and self-produced by the maestro himself as well as collaborations with 7 different artists. His ability to pair clever lyrics, fresh production and a laissez faire attitude has continued to keep him as a main player in the Seoul Hip Hop scene
In episode 5, we tag along on a night out with the hip hop veteran to speak about his hometown and the epiphany that changed his music career.
Hey Yumdda, how’s it going. What’s new with you?
Hi, I’m good! I’ve been living in Kangdong, and I’ve just recently released my 3rd album "Breathe 2".
Congrats! Could you tell us how you got started in music?
I’ve been playing music for a long time, but I think I’ve only really began making music right after my father died.
What is music making in Seoul like? What kind of influence does the city have on you?
I’ve lived in Seoul for more than 30 years, it is one of the oldest places and is a place of inspiration for me. All of the things such as the people you meet, the places, the atmosphere, the weather, all of these influence my music. I’ve moved around a lot in Seoul so I’ve experienced diverse places around this city. Wherever you go, if you pay close enough attention to small meticulous details, those details emerge as inspirations. These are moments in life that I cherish and hold dear - I try to put these feelings and inspirations into my music.
How would you describe the music scene in seoul?
I don’t really think about this. I’m just focusing on what I mainly do.
Was there a significant or memorable moment in your career that you can tell us about?
I met my father’s friend after my father passed away, this was before my first album, and that meeting fundamentally dismantled the way I think. He told me to live “correctly”. When I heard those words from this guy I couldn't stop but burst into tears. Up until that point, even though I was making music, I wasn’t working very hard. From that moment I decided to do something with my life, to live better, make better music, think about my career. To this day I exercise regularly and listen to two hip hop albums everyday, and return straight back home for work.
Any particular place you wanna throw a concert? (Seoul or elsewhere)
I just want to perform, so anywhere.
What are your hopes or plans for the future?
I don’t think it needs to be complicated, I wake up and always think about what I should do. I just want to continue to make music that I love.
Five words to express your music.
Women / Don Mills / Recording / Seoul / Me