For Los Angeles based artist Akajou, writing music is a narrative feat where lyrics serve as the road map for existential, moral and self exploration. It’s a space where the young artist can make sense of the world, make sense of himself and where he can understand how the two intersect. Through his expressive music, he draws up an emotional outpouring of varying degrees, sometimes a steady drizzle, and other times a torrential deluge.
In his newest single, “Dead Ends,” Akajou struggles with his former self, the one who made some wrong decisions and now keeps tripping up on all the consequences of his past actions on top of striving for his new goals. The new single is also the lead off his upcoming nine-track album, Akajou Is Real, out February 22 and produced by Sincere Noble.
Although facing your own shortcomings can be painful, and it can be hard to figure out what to fix and what to let go, Akajou makes it clear that this process is necessary to grow and hopefully not make the same choices in the future. We all make life harder for ourselves, and sometimes those decisions keep affecting us, but it’s always up to us to keep trying.
“”Dead Ends” was inspired by the dead ends in my life and how I’m working on getting out of them,” Akajou notes. “From life, to love, to family to music — I wanted it to serve as documentation of my journey to freedom.”
The music video for “Dead Ends” was directed by Elekro Ninja and features Akajou rapping throughout different neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Simple in its content, the video speaks to the song’s earnest and straightforward lyrics and gives Akajou the opportunity to pour more of himself into his work.
Writing so openly, Akajou’s messages in his music resonate with potency and purity. His own life accounts and perspective come through undeniably clear while his delivery and cadence make it easy for his audience to relate to such personal songs. With lyrics that are so heavily influenced by living and filled with shining emeralds of wisdom, Akajou’s rapping style and overall rhythm is more classic, and as Big Daddy Kane would say, Akajou’s musical strength lies in his ability to speak clearly and eloquently to get across what he wants to say.
“I started to pursue music in 2016 after losing my father in a tragic motorcycle accident,” Akajou says. “I like to create music and be the artist that I feel the music industry is missing. My lyrical content is therapeutic for me but it’s also written with enough transparency for listeners to find relatable and inspirational. The lyrics highlight the many lows in life and how to transform and conquer them with self-belief. Music for the underdogs!”
Sharing himself through his music, Akajou’s upcoming release, Akajou is Real, is sure to be filled with growth, love, and perseverance.
Words: Patti Sanchez