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Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

Photo Credit: 3K9Visions

Chicago is one of the greatest cities in America, so it is not surprising that it would also produce some of the nation’s most talented, upcoming artists. One of those amazing artists is none other than Aina Brei’Yon!

Aina escaped some of the most dangerous parts of Chi-Town to become a true sensation, and a rapper with skills that can stare down some of the music industry’s greatest emcees. She is truly a woman in “Kontrol” of her life; speaking with us on her music, being a mogul, and navigating her personal life. “To have it all, you gotta do it all…You can’t be out here procrastinating.”

As aforementioned Aina Brei’Yon is a native and gem of Chicago. She grew up seeing the best and worst the city had to offer, using the latter to motivate her to greatness. “Chicago’s home, but when you are surrounded by an environment that isn’t always safe you learn a lot. How to be resourceful, survive, and most importantly realizing you have to make it out of there to help yourself and somebody else if you can.” Aina goes on to reveal her family also greatly influenced her drive to be the best. “Just growing up and seeing some the things my brothers were involved with kept me on the straight and narrow path and motivated…Somebody had to break the cycle.” Aina definitely seems to be breaking the cycle with her music and business ventures.

aina brei'yon

As a rapper, music comes to Aina as easily as breathing. Her lyrics are the epitome of a wordsmith on fire! All of her songs are true bops, bringing her own flare and Midwestern style with real skill and true passion. Our favorite songs by her are “13 Questions” and “Caught Up!” She counts preceding female emcees and rappers like Queen Latifah, MC Lyte, and Lady of Rage as her musical influences. When asked how she feels about the recent resurgence of female rappers, she goes on to say, “It’s becoming more diverse, but there’s still more to be done….History is redeeming itself though, by acknowledging the greats [aforementioned influential rappers/emcees listed]…” Aina like many artists draws inspiration for her music from real life experiences, which is undoubtedly why many find it so relatable. “You can’t rap or make music about what you don’t know. You have to keep it real with your audience, they can tell when you being fake [she laughs].” 2020 is set to be great year for the Chicago rapper, as she reveals she will be releasing new music. “It’s gonna be fire, believe that.”

Besides being an amazing rapper, Aina Breyon is now making mogul moves, launching her own music production company, “3K9 Productions!” The company will not only create amazing beats, but produce songs, and eventually develop artists. “It’s my baby [she laughs]! I love being a boss and working for myself. I knew kind of early own I have an attitude and needed to do things my own way [she laughs]!” She goes on to admit that finding the time to do everything she needs to do has become a bit challenging. “I’m learning and realizing a lot. I try to balance things out, and everything is coming together. I just can’t be as active on social media.” Launching 3K9 Productions is definitely a power move and one in the right direction. You can check out the website for the new company by clicking here.

aina breiyon

When it comes to love Aina is no stranger, and is in fact in a relationship of her own. “I have a woman now. I was single for five years, but we’ve been dating for five months. She’s a private person so I try to keep us privately.” As a rapper who happens to like women, she is often compared to Young MA. “It’s nothing to compare and I don’t get offended. She’s a masculine presented female, it’s a surface level comparison.” Aina Breyon is destined for greatness and is already carving and blazing her own path to become one of the greatest rappers in the country. Her strength and drive to be the best is beyond admirable. She tells up and coming rappers to “Stand in your truth. If you aren’t doing that then what are you doing? You have to know what you want, and have the bigger picture in your mind. Stay consistent and always pick yourself back up. The ‘no’s’ will get you through the door.”

 

Interviews

In It to Win It! Meet VNIS! Music’s Latest Rising Star!

When it comes to new artists, many are talented, but few have the lion’s share of true creativity and the ability to truly stand out. The latter is the stuff dreams and wishes are made of.

However, VNIS (pronounced like Venice), a rising star seems to have what it takes to “Kontrol” his destiny and leave his musical mark on the world.

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vnis artist

When it comes to new artists, many are talented, but few have the lion’s share of true creativity and the ability to truly stand out. The latter is the stuff dreams and wishes are made of.

However, VNIS (pronounced like Venice), a rising star seems to have what it takes to “Kontrol” his destiny and leave his musical mark on the world.

VNIS’s love for music,  like many artists began in his childhood, stirred by the musical ability and influence of his family. “…my older brother was a rapper and I remember he would set up a microphone in his room, and he had very primitive audio recording equipment and used Quick Mix and FruityLoops [mixing softwares] and would write verses and I’d sing on the bridge. I think that’s where my love of music started. My parents had me in piano lessons very, very young; but I think it wasn’t until middle school that I joined the chorus and musical theaterI envisioned a life for myself in music and performing…” 

vnis artist

VNIS’s love of music is definitely shown in his work. His vocals are smooth, alluring; and almost supernatural in the ethereal feel of the sound. We are big fans of his singles “W.A.I.H.” and “Young Visionary!” The former is a ballad that is all too relatable for anyone who has ever wondered why they are sticking around for an unrequited love, while the latter is a celebration of self! Indeed a celebration of self is what fuels all independent artists in the music industry as it can be daunting to make a name for yourself or be respected for your work without a major label behind you. “I don’t think anyone who is independent is without trials and tribulations. The biggest thing is not having a lot of  money behind you…things happen a little bit slower [he laughs]…The good thing about being independent–at least for me–is we have creative control on everything that we release….if you’re seeing something that VNIS is putting out, me and my amazing team put it out because we made the executive decision to do it. It’s not because we were coerced or anything…but I feel like the love of what we do supersedes any struggle we [independent artists] might have.”

Interestingly, VNIS is quite the globetrotter, formerly living in South Korea. He admits the culture and locale and have had an impact on his music. “So I left Korea about a year and a half to two years ago…when I moved to Korea, I kind of moved there at the drop of a dime. I threw a dart at a map and I was like I need to go here! I didn’t really know anything about the culture or language, but the really cool thing about Korea is that it has a very, very supportive community so I joined groups and started rubbing elbows with the right people and started performing and building up a fan base, and it was awesome. ..Black culture and music is so respected and revered there in a way that we don’t see stateside and so I felt like a huge celebrity there [he laughs].” VNIS is right about hip-hop culture in South Korea where some of the world’s greatest hip-hop dance groups and Asian rappers hail from. It is amazing to see the extent of our culture in the most nether regions of the world!

VNIS artist

VNIS, like everyone else on the planet, has been affected by COVID-19. However, he chooses to see the brighter side of the pandemic’s influence, asserting it has been highly beneficial for creatives. “It has allowed creatives to be more focused. Myself, and people I have worked with, kind of have more time to invest in projects that we really, really want to…it’s difficult for a lot of people, but there’s some benefit to being able to sit back and decide what you really want to do within the next couple of months…” With 2021 mere months away VNIS went on to assure us more new music was on the way! “We’re really excited! The feedback we got from my two singles [W.A.I.H. and Young Visionary] let me know where we needed to go with the music…I definitely think my team and I plan on releasing new music, getting a storyboard together–What do the people need at this time? What is the story? What is the sound?–I’m ready for some great things in 2021!” We are hoping these new singles will come along with a full-fledged album. VNIS’s voice is addictive! In the meantime, we can get our fix on November 20, 2020, when he drops his EP, “POV!”

Besides music, VNIS is also a lover of fashion! His style is trendy and chic with looks that would put any GQ Magazine spread to shame! For VNIS he admits how he dresses reflects his demeanor. “How you dress affects everything that you do…for me as an artist I’m not only getting dressed for me but how my day is gonna go, how my week is gonna look…like I have these sweatpants that are really fluffy and wear them when I’m writing and I love them and that’s what they’re for…I think that goes for any outfit that I’m wearing and I love the option to wear something beautiful…” At Kontrol Magazine we believe fashion is more than a label it’s a lifestyle, so wear it. Clearly, VNIS is wearing his life beautifully and amazingly.

We love VNIS and his music, he is an amazing artist and things are only going to rise higher and higher for him. He advises other independent artists to “keep at it, don’t give up. Something in you is telling you this is what you’re meant to do so you need to follow it and give it life…” Indeed, there should be nothing that stops your dreams. VNIS is a shining example of breaking away and taking a true risk to make your dreams come true. There’s much to be appreciated and loved.

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Interviews

[VIDEO] “Hey Mikey Goes Virtual” w/ Toni Bryce!

The intersections of race and sexuality can be as complicated as being between a proverbial “rock and a hard place.”

However, Toni Bryce, an amazingly talented young woman is navigating them with poise, grace, and a growing voice in the fight for her right to exist, a budding acting career, and a new role in Starz’ new series, “P-Valley!”

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toni bryce

The intersections of race and sexuality can be as complicated as being between a proverbial “rock and a hard place.”

However, Toni Bryce, an amazingly talented young woman is navigating them with poise, grace, and a growing voice in the fight for her right to exist, a budding acting career, and a new role in Starz’ new series, “P-Valley!”

toni bryce

Talking with Toni is always a treat! In the first part of her interview our very own, Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning (in regards to COVID-19 limitations) snagged a Zoom interview with Toni as she spoke on the frequent murders of transgender people of color, the role of transgender women like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera in LGBT American History, and Black Lives Matters unwittingly overshadowing Pride Month.

Toni went on to discuss “The Beauty in Colors March,” created by Atlanta councilman, Antonio Brown; which began near Atlantic Station and ended at the Rainbow Walkway in the heart of Midtown Atlanta. Here, she discusses fighting for justice for all oppressed people, the power of words and pronouns in relation to transgender people, the erasure of transgender people from LGBT community causes, and how she got her role on the upcoming series “P-Valley!”

Toni Bryce is one of those rare people who “talks the talk AND walks the walk!” Her work and service to various communities of people, while reconciling her own personal feelings and experiences.

toni bryce

Toni’s story is far from over and as you can see she is only scratching the surface of her potential! We are happy to witness her rise and will always be down for the ride when it comes to Ms. Bryce! Congratulations Toni on EVERYTHING!

To book your own interview contact us at HeyMikeyATL@gmail.com.

**We reserve the right to edit, use, or not use any footage we see fit. Thank you!**

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Interviews

The Divine Shine of Divinity Mychael!

“A Star is Born!” Those are just four words which describe Divinity Mychael, singer, fashion designer, and rising star! Divinity is truly a young woman on the go, working hard for her dreams and to share her voice in an industry where the competition is only becoming fiercer by the day.

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divinity mychael

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

divinity mychael

“A Star is Born!” Those are just four words which describe Divinity Mychael, singer, fashion designer, and rising star! Divinity is truly a young woman on the go, working hard for her dreams and to share her voice in an industry where the competition is only becoming fiercer by the day.

Divinity, however, is not phased, she has all the talent in the world and God on her side. “I’m determined and have a dream I’m going to make happen…there’s nothing easy about it, but nothing worthwhile really is.”

divinity mychael

Like many artists, Divinity Mychael has known she wanted to be a singer since she was a child. Also, like some of the greatest singers who ever lived like Whitney Houston and Aretha Franklin she learned to sing in church. “Church is definitely one of the best training grounds in the world for singing. I sang in the choir for years and sang different parts. I can sing soprano, alto, and even tenor [she laughs]–the last one is a little hard for me though.” Indeed there is true versatility in her voice allowing her to hit the highest notes or smooth undertones, making her music a true treat. Her single, “SCAR,” is a real bop and gives us real Tinashe vibes. 

They say life and experience are the best teachers, but for Divinity, it is the source of her music. “My music tends to reflect things I’ve been through and situations I’ve dealt with. It makes your music relatable and you’re transparent…that’s how I want to be with my fans and supporters. I want them to get the authentic me when they hear my music.” SCAR may be Divinity’s most popular single, but it is not her newest piece of work. In fact, she has an unnamed EP ready to drop this summer! “I really feel like everyone is going to enjoy the tracks. I put a lot of work and love into them, and can’t wait for you guys to hear what I’ve come up with. You’ll see I’m no stranger to hard work!” 

divinity mychael

As aforementioned, Divinity is definitely no stranger to working for what she wants, having another venture in fashion with her own fashion line, “Div Life!” “My line is made of clothes every woman can wear. I really want women to feel empowered, sexy, and beautiful in my clothes. Currently I’m looking for models for an upcoming fashion show I’m planning and from there it is more work getting it off the ground.” There are few things more trying than being an entrepreneur on top of being an artist as well, but she handles the combined pressures well. “I have an amazing team and support system behind me. You know I still work a day job, I’m an artist, and a [fashion] designer, so for me it’s really a balancing act, time management, and remaining focused. There’s so much to do when you’re on the rise.”  Divinity’s many hats are currently her “true loves.” Determined to remain focused, she is not dating or looking to date anyone at the moment. “I’m nineteen [she laughs] love will come, but for now I’m in my bag! I don’t need any distractions.”

Divinity Mychael is destined for greatness. We can hear it in her music, see it in the way she moves, and watch it manifest itself in her drive. She advises other independent artists and rising stars to “never give up…I know it’s hard, we’re all trying to make it, but we have to keep at it. Nothing happens overnight–nothing.”

divinity mychael

Instagram: @divinitymychael, @divlifeonline

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