Sham1016 gives LA more than music

Rapper Sham1016 smiles at the camera, showing a gold tooth, in front of a house in the south center.
Los Angeles rapper Sham1016 has been focusing on music for just six years, but has already amassed excellent discography and a significant fan base in the South Central community. (Photo courtesy of @willazcona, Sham1016)

Growing up, Sham1016 recalled listening to all the music that fell on Tuesdays when his uncle would pick it up after school. This formed the basis for the kind of music he enjoyed; He cites musicians like Tupac, Kendrick Lamar, Missy Elliott and Judchi. Such artists instilled in him the importance of diversity and inspired him to create music on any subject he wanted to explore.

A rapper from south-central Los Angeles who has been working on his art for the past six years. After deciding to focus on full-time music in 2016, he developed a long, honed catalog – but it’s not just about music. He is also a graphic designer and co-owner of Blacker the Berry Juicery, a juice company he and his partner, Dominic Burrell, founded back in 2018. In all his creative pursuits, he seeks to empower his community.

When he returns to Vermont Avenue in south Los Angeles, that if he tells of his upbringing as one full of family, friends and a sense of community, but also marked by violence and incarceration. His connection to the community is almost second nature, he said, one that has earned him countless opportunities.

“If you grow up in Los Angeles, you’ll have a sense of pride,” Sham said. “Especially the block where you grew up, the hood you grew up in, the community where you grew up … you always want to make sure you do something for your community and where you come from, it’s imprinted on us … you want to wear for the people who represent it.”

Sham1016 bends over, photographed on a shelf in front of a house in the south center.
(Photo courtesy of @willazcona, Sham1016)

That if he has already reached huge milestones in his rap career – he is proud to go on a tour with the prominent Los Angeles rapper Bino Rido and that his song, “Internet Bangers”, was played on the radio show “LA Leakers”. But despite his popular success, he is most proud of how his music is received by the young people of Los Angeles.

“Even with the [song] ‘Play Ball’, one of my close friends, he works in the youth system, [told me that] The kids have heard it, and you know, these are kids who did some nonsense in the streets, but they recite my shit, “said Sham.” I’m talking about you having enemies from different hoods who don’t fuck each other, shaking hands and reciting the lines … It’s bigger than a Grammy. ”

He plans to work with his engineer to provide local children with the equipment they need to create music. For if, the ability to positively impact his community is a vital tier in his career.

Being community oriented is exactly how doing business. For the clip for his song “Play Ball”, his first instinct was to contact local music producer Ten Fifty. The producer from Inglewood remembers working with Sham for the first time a year after they met while filming a podcast for a mutual friend and was drawn to the rapper’s creativity and love for his neighborhood during their first collaboration.

“[Sham] “Well, we’re going to this corner place … I just want to make sure we get this corner of the block, I want to make sure we get this street sign,” Ten Fifty said.

When the only requirement of that is to emphasize the street sign of Vermont Square, Ten Fifty is given creative freedom to decide what else to add to the video. Ten Fifty remembers some of the initial difficulties he had when working on the video, trying to match Sham’s evolving track with dynamic visuals. Eventually he drew inspiration from the various musical instruments that if he became in the song, and decided to pay homage to the clips of these original songs to create something new.

“I took those ideas of how they painted it and how they filmed it and I just applied it to my video,” Ten Fifty said. “Without checking out these videos, it was probably just a good quality video, but not as creative as it turned out without [us] Thinking right now, ‘Okay, what [are we] Intend to do with it? ‘”

Sham1016 is sitting at a picnic table outside a restaurant in south-central Los Angeles, Tom's Burger.
(Photo courtesy of @willazcona, Sham1016)

As reflected in “Play Ball,” Sham’s pursuits seek to flip and share his favorite parts of his life with his community. This philosophy also extends to Blacker the Berry Juicery. He and Burrell started the juice business with the goal: to expand some of their favorite healthy drinks to every corner of Los Angeles, where fringe communities often avoid cheap options.

Not only did the LA food deserts focus. The business also seeks to raise awareness of the insufficient food options in the U.S. prison system, and is working to provide better options for incarcerated people.

“Blacker the Berry Juicery is a plant-based social justice structure that addresses food insecurity and food apartheid within disadvantaged communities,” Burrell said. “Two of our long-term goals are to collect data to support legislation and change food-related laws in prison to provide [those incarcerated] With healthier options. But, we also use this data to allow us to focus on our food and juice options [the disadvantaged] crowd.”

Both Sham and Burrell come from areas that offer little access to healthy food – Los Angeles and Richmond, Washington, respectively. They both see that this issue is not just around their homes, but is common across the U.S. In addition, they both have family and friends who have been or are incarcerated, and much of what they have heard is that the food in the prison system is “terrible.”

“Just because people are imprisoned [or] In prison – sometimes they are not even guilty of the crimes they are there for – that does not mean they should not have a healthier food option, “he said if.” The best they are going to get is V8 juice, and most of it is sugar. ”

Sham1016 looks sideways, away from the camera, leaning against the counter at Tom's Burger, a restaurant in south-central Los Angeles.
(Photo courtesy of @willazcona, Sham1016)

As if that’s life was not busy enough, he released an album on April 8 called “Foul Play” following the February release of the lead single “Hurt Yourself”. He said he feels his latest project has something special about it – other than the potential to launch it into people’s playlists.

“With ‘Injustice Game’ you have to expect greatness, just go up a level,” said Sham. “It’s better than ‘everyone’s enemy’ … do not expect it to be what you expect from a coach in Los Angeles.”

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