It’s 2018 and diversification is the name of the game if one is set to survive in the entertainment industry. The modern day artist has to be self sufficient and with impeccable foresight and the ability to be malleable to the Industry’s ever changing climate.
While Young Black has made a name for himself as a musician under Bang! Gae - Cranking out festive summer songs and the occasional ballad, what might prove to outlive his music might just be his online TV show Mono Culture.
Mono Culture has hosted notable music acts from all across the country and spanning genres. On it, Young Black interviews his fellow entertainers and asks the hard questions. The questions media people probably won’t ask because nobody wants to risk being struck off guest list to the next hot show.
I sat down with Black to find out what Mono Culture came about, how it fits into his vision in the grand scheme of things, and where exactly he thinks his vision will lead him.
Why did you start Mono Culture?
Mono Culture came about because I wanted to give artists a platform to market themselves where they could be free and fully catered for. I didn’t feel like we had anything in the country right now that let artists really come on and show who they are, what they do freely. You go to radio and TV and those shows make you squeeze your whole craft and being into a 5/10 minute segment… That won’t give anyone the right time or energy to really showcase themselves and I feel like our artists work hard. They deserve that platform, so I made it.
What’s been your biggest hurdle/fear with making the move from music to essentially TV?
I’ll tell you the truth, this isn’t really a thing I wanted to do. It isn’t really a thing I wanted to be the face of, that is. Music is where my heart is but I knew that Mono was important in a way that’s bigger than what I want, it was, I hate to say it, for the culture, so I had to hop on there and get it started. I didn’t wanna wait to get a host or whatever else. I was there, I had the idea, so I started it.
My biggest fear is actually being remembered solely for Mono Culture. I want it to be successful but in the story of my life and how it’s written, if people remembered me more for Mono or as the TV guy and not Black the artist, it would break my heart.
What’s been your favourite interview to date?
I’d have to say it was with Girly. Her energy was authentic, she came in as herself and left as herself. A lot of people feel the need to put on this front for the camera - which I understand because the brand and persona are important but when it gets to a point where other people can’t reach you, I feel like you’ve lost it. I’ve had interviews where someone was one way in person then as soon as the camera cuts on, they turn into something they’re not and therefore something they can’t carry and those interviews are always the worst. How am I supposed to talk to you when you’re not even there?
Do you have any plans to make Mono bigger?
It’s definitely something we’re working on. Figuring out the logistics, what exactly we’d need, from where, where we’d take it, you know. We’ve had some meetings with people who’d be able to assist us in that area and things are moving forward so yes, that’s definitely in the works. I don’t want people to think that means it’s going to be instantaneous because it probably won’t - We want to make this good, and that requires time. Just know that it’s a priority for us to make this as big as it can be.