Crafting the right vibe

WHEN you get serious with your craft, good things will naturally happen. At least that's what local rapper and songwriter Ayril Senna believes.

Known professionally as Senna, the 22-year-old producer and creative director first introduced himself to the local music scene with Nothing to Lose in late 2015.

"To be honest, no one would actually listen to me, [and] no radio station or TV would have put me on, if it wasn't for Nothing to Lose," said the young rapper in a recent interview.

His love for spitting rhymes started at age 13, when he heard a song by Drake.

"I was just like 'yo, I like how he's saying things'."

The infatuation with the art form soon saw him rapping along to songs he streamed on the internet on his computer every single day, until he realised he wanted to put out his own music.

"It came to a point where I thought, why don't I just do my own rap or do my own song, so it's from me, you know," he said.

"So I just did it, and … Nothing to Lose came out."

Barely 17 years old then, Senna didn't feel the significance of releasing a song at the time, and spoke about it casually to friends, saying: "This is on SoundCloud, do you want to hear [it]'?"

Next thing he knew, people were calling him up to perform at shows, just because of that one song.

"So, I was like, okay, this is good," he reflected.

Senna has also collaborated on a few tracks with other local rappers, mostly talents from Kraziesoundz, a collective of young creatives in the music scene.

He arguably garnered the most attention after being featured on A-Kid's 2017 record Ada Awek.

Fast forward to 2018, and he's gotten one of his biggest gigs to date, when his manager woke him up with a call saying Jin Hackman from local hip-hop collective Raising the Bar wanted him to perform at this year's Good Vibes Festival.

"A month, a month and a half after that, the poster came out [with] my name on it [and] I was just like, 'oh sh*t, okay, this is getting serious!'," he said.

"I'm excited about it actually. I'm really excited."

Besides dropping his second single, Cameras Flash, in March this year, and an album due this year, Senna revealed that he will be performing a brand new single called Tak Tahu, when he takes the stage at Good Vibes, taking place at The Ranch at Gohtong Jaya, Genting Highlands in July.

Comfortable rapping in both English and Malay, Senna said that the unreleased song will feature a mix of both languages.

"It might sound like it's just a Malay song, but it's actually very rojak. [Tak Tahu] came out very random.

"I would say something like, 'it's not about you', and then suddenly it changed to 'tak tahu', so I was like, okay, that's a concept."

Getting serious with his craft also meant handling a growing fanbase, and he admitted that coming up with the rest of the lyrics is harder when all eyes are on him.

"Tak Tahu is one of those songs that I can say was quite hard for me to execute, because it's like a 'direction' type of song," he said.

"You have to focus on that one topic and be like 'yo, I gotta' write a song to fit that topic of Tak Tahu'.

"You guys will hear it in Good Vibes. I promise you guys that. And like, to be honest, I can say that the song fits the vibe."