Kojey Radical, 23, is a London based poet, musician and mixed media visual artist. Born and raised in artsy Hoxton, his surroundings have inspired his aspiration for art and music.
From the age of nine, Radical decided to see every form of expression as art, allowing each one to become a new language for him to communicate through.
Radical began his artistic career when he took on a degree at London School of Fashion. He is now the Creative Director of the PUSHCRAYONS collective/network, a creative media agency that he founded & Art Director of contemporary menswear brand Chelsea Bravo.
“As a kid I never saw myself doing anything normal, I knew I would never be comfortable with just one position where I’m under somebody and my ideas aren’t worth anything. I was always fascinated with artists such as Kaws and Basquiat and from there I made a choice of, what do I want to be known as?” he says.
When asked about his journey, who he is and what makes him different, he says: “I’m Kojey, I can only be who I actually am. I can’t be someone else because that takes more time and effort to maintain so I try to be real. You can touch me, we can walk down the street and have a chat and I would still be myself.
“Whenever I’m asked that question of who I am in the bigger picture, I literally just say that I’m an artist because with art there are no parameters.
“There are so many different kinds of art and there are so many different ways to translate art but essentially it’s a language. Everything that I’m exerting is me attempting to become fluent in another language, another form of communication.
“If I have a story to tell and it can’t be done through an image, I might need to speak on it and that might become a poem. If I need people to connect with it, I might write a poem or if I need people to see it, I might direct a film. Or I imagine the characters in the space to dress a certain way so now I have to go and design a collection.
“If I were allowed to say this, I would probably define myself as Batman. You’re probably wondering why I said that. Well it’s because you can’t box me in or expect me to be like everyone else and do what other people are doing.”
In February 2016, Radical released his extended play titled ‘23Winters’.
The Mixtape includes an African feel that illustrates an honest and personal analysis of a loud and vibrant relationship between father and son, with the themes of family, society, faith and love throughout. Radical’s father was the inspiration behind his EP.
“My Dad is my motivation. ’23Winter’ was written over the course of two years and it was all about my life experiences. I needed to go back to memories of being around the street life and I wanted to create something with meaning, truth and transperancy.”
In the EP, his father delivers a serious and inspirational narration throughout the project, advising his young son on missteps, values of life, mistakes and memories during his time adjusting to life in England after his years of growing up in Ghana.
It is definitely a different view into the parallel world of the poet.
To explain the idea behind his project he says: “I wanted to create a body of work that voices my ideas and philosophies while also offering another sense of perspective. My father’s decision to live in England has ultimately shaped my view on life because it’s all I know, listening to him speak you get a sense that our experiences may not be that different.”
Radical performs on different platforms all across the UK, including well-known festivals, live shows and university events. He always aims to deliver what he’s best at which is performing through spoken word using different concepts and angles of life and what it has to offer.
After continuous progress in his career, releasing his debut EP in June 2014 followed by his current one in February 2016, Radical has become a name to look out for, selling out his first headline show twice due to popular demand.
His next headline show is scheduled to take place in Brighton in June.
His attitude and unique style has earned him the attention from GQ Magazine, Fader, Idol, BBC 1 Xtra, Soul Culture, The405, Clash Magazine and OKAYAFRICA to name the few.
“Look out for anything and everything whether it being new visuals, my first MOBO award for Best visual of 2016, more shows or more music. Keep an eye out for Kojey Radical because I’m definitely coming, bigger and better.”