Many of you knew Daniel Kelly as Owen, the rough and tough athlete on seasons 10-12 of the popular series, Degrassi. Forget everything you thought you knew about him then. Deph Naught is his stage name and he has been rapping for years. This raw interview is all about the artist known as Deph Naught.
*Some language may may be considered NSFW
Can you start off by introducing yourself?
What up yall, this is Deph Naught. I’m a rapper out of Toronto Canada; I like coffee, cigarettes, upsetting people unintentionally, and i have really nice socks.
How did the name Deph Naught come about?
The name came from a cypher one time when i was bout 13 years old. I had been spitting for a couple years by then, i started at 11, and i frequented all the hot spots in my area. This one was by my elementary school and some rapper clowned me saying “this lil white boy gone rhyme on me? if yall wanna hear a real mc kick it, tell this kid Definitely Not!” and had the whole circle chanting that sh*t. I got all heated and promptly handed him his own a** infront of everyone, but it got me thinking. Weaknesses into strengths and all that bullsh**..
At what point in your life did you really feel you could challenge the rap game?
When i was around 15 years old, I had like an epiphany with my rhyme schemes and just my general thought process. Where as before i was more concerned with fitting in and rapping how everyone else around me rapped, I changed into a more f*ck what they talking about, Im just gonna spit whatever comes to my mind and quit biting my damn tongue. Next thing you know i started rapping about how much my parents piss me off, and how out of place i feel all the time, and how badly i just wanna murder people when they give me that “white rapper” bullsh**. Also, killing puppies and kicking girls that dont like me off of buildings.. that too. That transformation led to a huge leap in artistic presence on the mic and really developing my sound and how i vocalize my emotions. I talked a lot with other Mc’s and cats i really looked up too and they all kind of agreed that I really had something special going on, seeing as how girls and sh*t would come out to see me rap at the cyphers and sh*t, something that was unheard of and i figured with all this doodoo going on in the mainstream world, maybe i could come and show these cats what it is while keeping a mainstream appeal.
Who were your inspirations in the music industry?
Well the biggest i’d have to say is Eminem. Through thorough study of how he did his thing I really learned to capture my own feelings and thoughts, and again, vocalize them in a way that was personal and relatable. Other then that I always bumped a lot of Nas, Pun, Jadakiss, 50, Fabolous and Luda to name a few. Another point i like to make though, is i draw a lot of what i do from sources outside Hip Hop too. I f*cks with alot of 80’s rock and 90’s grunge sh*t which I think really rounds me out and helps me keep things interesting. Even comedians too, I learn a lot from the way they make an audience understand a point without saying it blatantly, and satire has to be my favorite thing in the universe.
Your mixtapes have shown much progression, take us through the creative process of each of your mixtapes.
My mixtapes are a good indication of where exactly my head is at when their recorded. My creative process is pretty tedious; and like most rappers worth their weight in salt, i throw out more rhymes than I keep. My biggest issue is making sure that my point gets across, and with that said, I really focus on how exactly i do it. I dont like to blatantly say how Im feeling or what I’m thinking when i rhyme, I always try and figure out a really creative way to send the message. I use a myriad of different literary techniques to do so, and though i feel like not everyone gets it the first listen, I’m confident that my work will stand the test of time when cats look back at it and go “Damn, I didn’t even realize what he was saying there but.. DAMN!”.
Now that you have multiple mixtapes, what are your plans for the future as we recently rang in 2014?
One of my biggest issues that i felt needed to be taken care of was my lack of content out and available to people that wanna check it out. I mean, I’ve been rapping for 10 years but Ready or Naught was my “real” body of work that i ever released (not counting local tapes that i would just hand out to friends and people on the block and sh*t). Now that I have done that, and I am super proud and confident in what I’ve released, Now i’m going to focus on attacking the mainstream. And dont worry guys, I wont be coming out with some sh*t featuring One Direcsh*t or no garbage like that. I feel like i have really dope content available online and wherever thats super lyrical, super creative and as Hip Hop as it gets, which i busted my balls to make, so now that i have that behind me, I’m really to hit that T.V screen with the next phase of “Project Sh*t Disturber”. <–trademarked btw…
Who is an artist you would hope to work with? Who is a producer?
I would love to work with some of the cats from Funk Volume, just to mention one off the top of my head. I have nothing but the utmost respect for the independent grind fest happening over there and it’d be dope get busy with them. As far as producers there are tons of local talent here in Toronto that i got a lot of love for and i really wanna start branching out from the tight knit circle I’ve got over here in Clarkson, Ontario and start messing with brand new sounds.
Blended with Twitter Questions
what was the best part about playing Owen on Degrassi?
@ohhayjenn lul, the money. Nah i met a lot of really cool people on that show, definately them. Great hardworking bunch of folks on that set.
what will be your tell of making it? At what point would you feel you’re successful?
@Savvy_Logic I’ll probably feel successful when other, even younger rappers are looking up to me and saying “I wanna do it like Deph did it”.
What was the most meaningful track off Naught Again to you?
@DephCorreia Thats hard, because on some cliche sh*t, they all mean a lot to me. Their all manifestations of how i feel, think, and deal with my surroundings on a day to day basis. But as far as the most heavily emotional song on that tape, dephinately “Bellezza In Fiore”.
You have put in a lot of work with your music and the successful stint you had on the popular t.v series, Degrassi. I want to thank you for your time, is there anything you want to say to your fans and our readers?
Shout out to everybody out there holding it down for Deph Naught, I love you guys, all of this is for YOU! Special shout out to my fams, Trixx, Ace, Lane Dorsey, J Frazer, Lucid and everyone else that keeps this alive. Leeeezdewwwwit