By: Nina Clevinger
Nineteen years on this planet is nothing. It’s a mere bump in the long, winding road that is life. It’s a fragment of time in the eyes of the elderly, the age seen as nothing but pure youthful idiocy to those over thirty-five. It’s an age where one is expected to be an adult, but instead is treated with the same dissonance given to that of a freshman in high school. Nineteen is tricky, no doubt about it.
So when a person is only 19-years old and knows exactly what they are doing with their life and how they are going to do it, it’s seen as pretty impressive. Chicago-based musician, Musa Reems, is only 19 and seems to have it all figured out.
Reems is studying music business as a sophomore at Columbia College Chicago. He is a member of a rap collective, and has been making music for over four years now. Times are changing for young Musa, as he is now working on his debut full-length project as a solo artist.
“As I grew up, I learned that both the underground and mainstream [music scenes] had tremendous talents that I could build knowledge from,” said Reems, regarding his interest in starting a music career. “I always wanted to step out of my comfort zone and I wasn’t familiar or comfortable with making music, so I was very excited to try something new and learn how to do it independently.”
Aside from music, Reems has a pretty extreme interest in sports - so much so, that before he discovered his knack for rapping, he actually wanted to play baseball professionally.
“I didn’t know I would be making music until I was 15,” said Reems. “When I entered high school, my interests began to change and I fell in love with hip-hop culture.”
School has always seemed to have a major impact on Reems and his rap career. One of the ways he began to truly discover his individual style was after an intense conversation discussing a wide range of rappers with one of his favorite teachers, Mr. Konny. Musa Reems recalls Konny introducing him to MF DOOM, the artist that Reems has since devoutly practiced free-styling over.
A few years later, Reems saw A$AP Rocky perform at Pitchfork Music Festival, and he knew rapping was what he wanted to pursue.
“It was truly influential to see someone so charismatic and confident in their ability,” said Reems. “It helped me grow into an individual who is fearless of boundaries.”
Reems first entered the solo scene with his two song EP, Another Dos(e).
"My art is my remedy, not only for me, but also my listeners,” said Musa, in regards to the EP’s play on the word ‘dose’. "Everything from regret, self- actualization, romance, broken friendships, the use of drugs in society, self - love, and perseverance were discussed [on this record].”
He spits fast, clear, and powerfully. His words come out with such a nice flow, listening to his music is something that is incredibly enjoyable.
The first song on Another Dos(e), “Eclipse,” is Reems’ personal favorite.
"The song is very personal to me and detailed a lot of things that has happened in my life over the past year,” he said. "I was also very passionate about the things I wrote and it added to my aggressive delivery.”
Musa Reems plans on continuing with music for as long as he lives. He wants to have the ability to support his family and friends, and to create from a place of love and appreciation for as many people as possible. Even cooler? Reems wants to take his art career to the next level. He hopes music will lead him to opportunities within film, photography, teaching and more.
"In order to achieve this, I must sustain my passion and remain true to the man in the mirror,” he said. "I know anything is possible.”
Keep an eye on Reems, this kid is definitely going places.
Check out his Soundcloud here, and stay tuned for that full-length project in the future.