Insight: Music and songwriting
From the street intellectual album days with 56 HOP ROD writing hit songs including ‘secret lover’ and ‘monkey bisnis’ to teaming up with Solomon Islands superstar, Jaro Local and local talented female songbird, Amy, for the Pacific Games 2023 winning theme song ‘Solomon Islands way’, he has collaborated successfully on several music projects and has set himself apart as a prolific Artist and songwriter.
Coming from a closely knitted music community in the Solomon Islands, William Kadi, with the artist name Khazin is an award-winning local artist from the smash hit collaboration with Blad P2A, ‘Ukulele’.
His most recent songwriting stint was on DMP’s powerful song ‘one life’ featuring the Jamaican international reggae/dancehall don, Demarco, off their (DMP) Long Way Home album, which also features a separate bonus remix version of ‘one life’ featuring Khazin himself and produced by Son of Shefram Studios.
In an interview about his latest release, an EP collection of previously released music that could be found on Spotify and other major digital stores, Khazin explains that his idea to put together the EP was to get his music in an organized catalog which would allow listeners to easily access it.
He said, “there were different sounds produced in that collection EP which features Downside Records, a production team from Vanuatu, Boi Ysah, Blad P2A, Young Davie, and Soul Jay from the Solomon Islands”.
In his opinion about the Solomon Islands’ music, he described it as “a wealth of unique sounds, both traditional and contemporary which already made its mark in the entertainment world, but it needs more support in promotions, branding, and protection to help build an organized industry which is shaping the future of our music and culture”.
Khazin also hinted about his upcoming feature with longtime collaborator and Artist Buad, who is the front-man man of fresh reggae powerhouse label Flame Boy International. He reveals the collaboration ‘everyday summer’ as a “chill sunshine mix, and it is due to be released with a music video directed and filmed by Reggae Haus. He said, “Flame Boy International’s producer ‘Toon’ and Solomon Islands’ finest music engineer DJ Liamz orchestrated this collaboration”.
When asked about his thoughts on 56 HOP ROD and what are the chances of producing a second album, he says “I won’t rule out the possibility but for now, my focus is to build my own catalog on Spotify and other local platforms like Mjams and try to get the music into editorial playlists which would reach out to a wider audience”.
Asked about his vision and style in music, he said “for now representing the ‘bilnat market’ narratives and bringing it to an international audience is the fun and unique thing about these songs. I think singing in our local languages as well as in pidgin and English is something unique itself”. His songwriting style and delivery in the EP collective infuses melodic harmonies of contemporary sound while also advocating for youth empowerment (Babylon Train) and simply being thankful for life (Give Thanks).
Khazin has a unique blend of nostalgic and contemporary island moods which allowed him to be comfortable mixing a variety of genres and sub-genres.
Currently, under a Chevening Scholarship studying in the UK, he hopes to network with like-minded people while at the same time studying and learning about the culture and lifestyle there.