K-Pop in Vancouver: Wild Waves
Updated: Jul 28, 2019
Crew name: Wild Waves
Members: (from left to right) Hoonzie, Hwan, Keylo, (K$h, Keeflow and Nic are also part of Wild Waves but were not present for the interview)
Officially became a crew: 2016
I know that the title of this post is a bit deceiving because if you are familiar with the Wild Waves then you know that they are definitely not K-Pop idols. They are Vancouver's very own collective of diverse members who rap, sing, produce, model and do so much more. I learned a lot about these guys during the interview and I thought I would share that with you. Enjoy!
Hoonzie, the leader and founder of Wild Waves, is a rapper, videographer and editor. He was into music from a very young age playing different instruments and singing in front of people in middle school and high school. Hoonzie's inspirations are Dok2 and Jay Park because in his words "they changed the hip hop scene in Korea." He also looks up to J. Cole for his story telling style of music, Kendrick Lamar for his skillful rap and Kanye for his creativity. He was inspired to create Wild Waves by A$AP Rocky and the A$AP Mob crew. When asked what his top three songs at the moment were, Hoonzie mentioned Moonlight by Ali Gatie, Backpack by Slchld and Band by Ambition Musik. Speaking of great songs to listen to, I highly recommend checking out Hoonzie's new track Wut.
Keylo is Wild Waves' producer and rapper. Like Hoonzie he also got into music by playing instruments like the piano and the guitar at a young age. When asked who inspired him, Keylo said that it's not about who but rather about what. For example, he tries to make beats that are trendy but also add his own personal style to them. Keylo also gets inspired by things he sees and does in his every day life: "I could see something and start thinking of lyrics or a beat." His top 3 songs at the moment are Big Poppa by The Notorious B.I.G., Blow my High by Kendrick Lamar and Till I Collapse by Eminem. If he could recommend one song for you to listen to right now, it would be Way Up by Lil Gimch (K$h) ft Wu and Keylo.
Last but not least we have Hwan who is a rapper, writer and sometimes a singer. Unlike the others Hwan got into music only recently and started to learn the ropes from the other members. Hwan also talked about how all Wild Waves members inspire him and his music. His favourite songs at the moment are Dusk Dismantled by Trivium and Wut by Hoonzie. His must listen to song is Freemitive by Hoonzie ft Hwan.
Even though Wild Waves boys have great individual strengths, they are definitely heightened when they work together. If you are a Soju Sunday regular then I'm sure you have seen these guys perform a couple times. When I asked them to describe the feelings they get when seeing people getting hyped up by their music, Hwan said it was like large scale karaoke. 😃
Wild Waves mentioned they had a concert late last year and I was curious to know what preparing for that was like. They worked on almost everything themselves and what made the whole process easier was the fact that they had so many people with different talents on board as well. Even though it was a bit nerve wracking, they enjoyed the overall experience and were happy with the positive response they got.
Wild Waves has a growing fan base and I wondered how they interact with their fans. They mostly interact with fans on social media but they also try and meet with some of them face to face and invite them to shows. Their advice for fans who also want to pursue music is to just start and be confident in the work you are doing.
There are hardships that could come from working in such a demanding industry. When I inquired how they managed to balance their work and social lives with friends and family, they answered that with friends it's a lot easier as they are able to involve them in their work by inviting them to the studio or to shows. They did say that the people who love them support them when they see their hard work and growth.
Boys also talked about the struggles they encounter while making music in Vancouver. Since the music industry here isn't big, they had to work from the ground up but seeing other local artists become successful is motivation for them.
Hanging out with these guys and getting to know more about their artistry was honestly really fun. I got three main takeaways from this interview, Hoonzie is a great leader, Keylo is really creative (not everyone can come up with song lyrics/a beat after seeing something on the bus) and finally that Hwan is very talented for being so new to music (and also pretty funny).
If you haven't checked out Wild Waves yet I would highly recommend you do so and show them some love! Hopefully I get to interview the other members and give you a part two.
Shout out to Daniel for taking these amazing pictures.
I'm going to leave you with one of my favourite Wild Waves songs performed at Soju Sunday, Levitate.