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“You Don’t Gotta Ask Nobody For Shit” : A Conversation With Cayla James

The Los Angeles Music Scene is as hot as ever with the emergence of so much new talent. From hollywood down to the Crenshaw district there are plenty of artists putting on for the city.

LA native  Cayla James  stopped by to talk music, representing the city as a woman and how she finds her inspiration.

Check out the conversation down below:

For Those who don’t know, Where are you from?

I’m an LA Baby. Born and raised. I got my hustle from the Crenshaw District though, that’s where I found myself. My first few jobs I had I worked on those very streets. My dad, uncles, and the family were over there 20+ years. I’ve been there since a youngin. I’m a daddy’s girl too so wherever he was, I was on his shoulder. We used to have rap circles in the back alley over on 43rd. I found my love for music at just 5 playing around with my uncles in those cyphers.

I can’t come out being wack it’s not accepted nor tolerated so if anything the “pressure” makes me want to grind more.

As a Los Angeles native. How are you feeling about the music coming from here?

Oh, it’s great energy coming from the west right now. Roddy, Blueface, Kalan.frfr, 1takeJay have all been in my view for a minute & they’re really making a lot of noise. Now all the city is missing is that one female to put on for us but that’s what they got me for. No female is in the same pocket when it comes to this rap shit let alone spitting like me from the West.

Where do you think you fit in the new wave of LA music.

I wouldn’t consider myself completely apart of the new wave sound. I love what they’re doing and I do bring that new wave energy but the tone I carry shows that classic 90’s feel. I’m just doing my thing, right in the middle bridging the gap, paying my respect but finding my own footing.

There are only a handful of women representing LA right with actual eyes on them. As one of them do you feel pressure to really put on for the city from a woman’s perspective ?

Some people might say it’s pressure but I love this feeling. I love the hustle & everything that comes with it. It’s apart of the game & everybody wants to be the best but not everybody is meant for that spot. I have a competitive spirit though, so it feels good when I go out there and see others wanting that same spot as me. The top. As a female, coming from the west coast, in more specifics the Crenshaw District, there isn’t a long history of female greats coming from my city. So, I can’t come out being wack it’s not accepted nor tolerated so if anything the “pressure” makes me want to grind more.

Does the city effect your sound at all?

No female is in the same pocket when it comes to this rap shit let alone spitting like me from the West.

Definitely. The west coast is known for being dripped/swaggy & making slaps! Our lingo is so much different from everywhere else that when we talk we don’t sound like anybody else. I’m just continuing that unique tone from LA that’s been happening for years. I love our sound.

Your music holds a lot of substance; you can hear that in the music. Is there an overall message that you want to get across to the people in your music?

It’s to never settle on your dreams. Don’t get so focused on the destination that you end up doing something you not proud of on the journey. Don’t cheat the grind. The grind is what’s going to get you there & keep you there, you have to strive to leave a legacy behind. You can be a baddie, on your grind, & independent.. you don’t gotta ask nobody for shit. Be something somebody can respect.. that way when anybody walks away from you, you can still stand on all ten without falling.

Who are you listening to right now?

I’m selfish, I listen to my unreleased music all day lol but when I’m off that I like listening to a mixture of old school joints and that new wave sound. Championships, Victory Lap, and Hoodie SZN have been heavy in the rotation lately too.

What can we expect from you in the next couple of months ?

You can be a baddie, on your grind, & independent.. you don’t gotta ask nobody for shit.

You can expect a lot. I’ve always been the type of person to make moves, say less, and let people see the results but I’m starting to realize I got to open up more & let the world know. My EP is dropping this Summer, I also have a lot of new features I’ve been working on (so much music in the stash) & videos for some of the songs as well. All in all, amazing content and I’m just excited to gain that great fan base so they can come with me on my journey as I grow.

Give us a couple of Your influences ?

Big HOV. I was a Roc girl in my past life *laughs* but nah Foreal I love Jay. Everything from rapping to his entrepreneurial business mindset he has always been the goat to me and ahead of his time.. He’s classic. Nipsey and Meek really embody the younger Hov, and they’re apart of that list of influences. When it comes to my determination, I get that from Kobe. I love foxy as well & Nicki one of the best too, y’all gone have to put some respect on her PEN!

Lastly Nip passed not to long ago, can you give us your take on him? What affect did he have on you.

That was heavy for me and he didn’t deserve to go out like that. It was definitely something the world felt but when you from LA, it hit you in the bottom of your stomach. We grew with him on his journey & as much as he wasn’t done educating us, we weren’t done listening. This man embodied the art of being flawless. He impacted culture & did so much for my community. All he wanted to do was teach everybody the way & it broke my heart that a “sucka took out a King” word to Dave East.

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