True to BSTN’s proprietary ‘Feed Fam, Fuck Fame!‘ philosophy, we’re introducing you to some members of the immediate as well as the extended BSTN family. In their own words, they talk about themselves, their career, and selected topics close to their heart. This is Feed Fam – Episode II featuring musician Serious Klein.
On his Ghanaian roots:
I try to fly to Ghana like every year. Last year, I couldn’t go because of COVID, but Ghana’s like my place. I am from Ghana. My parents are from Ghana, so I try to connect with the community over there. I try to make music with the artistes from Ghana, and it’s the same with the States.
I got a lot of friends over there. I got a lot of producers I’m working with and it’s cool. I feel like the awakening and the realization of black Americans being Africans in the first place kind of changed a lot. So, it’s like a huge community and everybody’s just trying to work together and create a big party where everybody gets a part. It’s kind of cool to jump between everything – Africa, the US and Germany.
On what shaped his vision:
I’m a Ghanaian kid. I grew up in a household that told me that you should be a lawyer, you should be a doctor … be anything but somebody who believes in his dreams. That’s why we want to be the example for the parents and for that generation after us and show them: ‘They went after their dreams and they made it.’
That’s the example we’re trying to create. And that’s why it’s so important to create a community and to create platform, something for black people to look up to. That’s the vision that we have: To create something for Black people that was never really there in this country.
On the Family Tree / 555 Collective:
When we started the Family Three – that’s what we call ourselves – we were just three boys with little knowledge and a big dream. We wanted to bring quality and we wanted to push those who are unseen. So we said: ‘Let’s just start with ourselves.’ Our goal was to create a space for young Black people who also have a dream. The community is the most important thing to us.
We always make sure that if we work on something – like a music video etc. – everybody takes something from it, whenever we come together. It’s always good vibes, it’s always love, and it’s always support. Even if somebody’s not ready to do stuff or there’s like more to reach, we tell them. We’re trying to push everybody that’s around us! This love is like one of the biggest things to us. So, we’re trying to give love, we trying to push people and we’re trying to create something that hasn’t been done yet.
On the goal:
It’s about supporting Black people, so the project is for us and by us. When I grew up, I was desperately looking for somebody that I can look up to. There were football players, but there wasn’t anybody from the industry. Everybody was like … it wasn’t really African. It wasn’t really Black. So, I want to be an example to those who have dreams while growing up in a society that tells them not go after those dreams.
If you look at the music industry, it’s not really a lot of Black people. Our vision is to create a legacy of Black people, supporting Black people in Germany, supporting each other and to give the next generations something to look up to! If there’s somebody who’s talented and if there’s somebody who’s willing to strive for their dreams, we give them a reason to believe in it. That’s the vision. Strive after your dreams, go for it, don’t let nobody tell you, you can’t do it because we grew up to standards that told us …
On establishing himself in the US music scene:
If I don’t tell people in the States that I’m from Germany, they don’t really realize that I am. A lot of people would be like, “You just sound like an American.” In addition, I always say I’m from Ghana. I was born in Germany, but I identify myself as a Ghanaian, so it’s kind of normal. And when they listen to my music, they can hear the quality, they can hear the potential, so it’s love. It’s love. It’s hard because I obviously don’t live in the States, but I feel like the more music I release, the more I connect when I fly over, the more I get to know people from the industry, the easier it gets.
On the album he is currently working on:
When I started realizing the direction of the album and the feeling I wanted to transmit, I knew I had to take my time. I’m still working on it, I want it to be perfect, I want it to be a classic. I want people to cry when they listen to it. I want people to laugh when they listen to it. I want people to vent and feel like they’re not alone.
It’s a lot about love, self-love of the understanding of true love, the love from a child to a mother or a father and the other way around. It’s about so many things, so I felt like I should really, really take my time. I started releasing EPs so I could take my time with the album. I’m working on another project so I can take my time with it. It’s intense because it’s about the last three years and so many things have happened. I lost my father. I became a father myself and … as I said, it’s pretty intense. But it’s a beautiful feeling because it’s like a roller coaster.
On the impact that COVID19 had on him and his career:
When COVID came, everything was over for many artists, especially an artist like me. I was on the road 24/7. I wasn’t at home so I was super shallow with everything around me. All of a sudden, my loved ones and I were forced to stay at home. So I was forced to look into the mirror and take a closer look on everything that’s happening around me. And I started realizing so much.
I became a total different person, not only because of the fact that I became a father, but also with the fact that I was so shallow with myself before. When I was on the road, I could skip so many things, and now I was forced to pay attention to what people are going through, pay attention to who people actually really are. I hope that makes sense!?
In a way, COVID was like a ying-yang type of thing. It brought a lot of bad things with it, but I managed to take some positives out of the situation as well. When it comes to humility and when it comes to understanding your people and being there for them, the pandemic was the best thing that happened to me, as weird as this sounds. I spent the whole pregnancy at home and now, I’m watching my baby grow. That’s the most beautiful feeling ever.