“I’ve never felt more confident in myself than I do right now.”
London is a cultural and musical melting pot. The UK gave home to music scenes and subcultures such as punk and the New Romantics. With unbelievable talent and art surrounding him, rapper Benny Mails is paving his way through the industry.
The way his latest single, Fuck It, came about was over drinks in the studio on Benny’s birthday. The London boy was working late with Lord Apex and Cesta, his two close friends who are featured on the track. What made this song so special, he says, was getting to work with these two. Cesta, he says, has been his best friend of 15 years and this is the first song they’ve done together. On the other hand, Lord Apex is someone Benny is currently working on bigger projects with. “He’s been a good friend of mine for the past 7 or 8 years,” he tells us of his friendship, “[Lord Apex] is one of those people I can really feel comfortable with writing music, which I find rare.”
After talking about his process of writing Fuck It, Benny quickly apologized, “I’m sorry I don’t know if I answered your question, I’ve got ADHD.”
When Benny was in high school, he was studying dance while his best friend was a music producer. “He was my idol,” Benny says of him. Through his proximity to others in the music industry, Benny was already finding himself in studio environments. He recalls his first times recording in a studio with his friends, “We were fucking around––I think we were smoking weed––and I ended up freestyling with my friends.” However, Benny said that he didn’t think he had the capacity or patience to write lyrics.
“My brain has always been this way and I can’t think in another way.”
“I eventually got to a place where I was calm enough within myself to write lyrics,” he tells us, “but I feel like [ADHD] is also a part of the reason why I haven’t released much music.” Recalling his struggles with writing, he shares how he has trouble staying on topic while writing. So, though he loved music, the idea of pursuing it felt alien. Looking back, he recalls how ridiculous the thought process was but music was the last thing he wanted to do.
“I had to let go of that inhibition and thinking that I don’t deserve to do something.”
Currently, Benny is working on an upcoming project containing music from the last five years of his life. Including a large time frame of work was something Benny found conflicting but, ultimately, felt right. “They’re things that I might not feel at the moment but that I’ve felt over the last five years,” he tells us.
“It’s all serendipity and it’s beautiful.”
Another project he is working on is a documentary. Benny tells us, “Both my brothers are directors and photographers and a lot of their friends are too.” His brother’s best friend, Finn James, has been working closely with Benny and filming him. While having his brother’s friend be the one filming him can make things easier, he also says it makes it harder. Benny likens the experience to “going to counselling with someone you know.”
Benny Mails is bringing the London sound to music. He’s looking to have fun and experiment, and overall, just say “fuck it.”