Knowing Him Ackurately
"I think black people are the most creative people on this planet. I think us as a whole still don’t understand that. If we embody and embrace that, a lot of things we want to see go on and a lot of things we want to hear, a lot of things that just aren’t relevant, we can change that.
We can shift the paradigm.”
I had the privilege to sit down with the 2019 headliner for ConsciousFest, the intelligent and wise Vincent Manuel, also known as Ackurate.
The mental health focused artist dropped gems on the subjects of community, mental illness, and hip-hop. His lyrics are CLEAN and appropriate for all ages where he speaks “truth to power” and believes in giving 100% from his soul. Here is just a glimpse into his world and here’s what he had to say. . .
Alexis: What situation in your life had the biggest influence on you as a rapper?
Ackurate: I would say going through depression was the greatest thing that happened to me. Hitting rock bottom for the first time showed me that I’m never going to be perfect which is totally fine. It explained to me that people that are broken, are the most incredible people. It showed me that I don’t have to be in a dark state of mind to produce incredible shit. I was trying to create in a dark state all the time. I had to remember that I could be happy and create some dope art at the same time.
Alexis: What made you choose the art form of hip-hop?
Ackurate: I didn’t choose it, it chose me. When I was in college I performed at an open mic and this dude came up to me and was like, “bruh everything you said was real accurate.” I looked up the word in the dictionary and the thesaurus trying to find ways of what’s accurate. After this, I was going to change my name to ‘Accurate tha wise’ but thought it was too long so I chose ‘Accurate.’ I thought to myself, “what can I do to make it pop?” I was just thinking I could just change the 2ndC to a K. Then it got deeper and I made ACK an acronym for Acquiring Consistent Knowledge.
Alexis: The 2019 Consciousfest theme is “Creators of Culture.” What does “Creators of Culture” mean to you?
Ackurate: Being true to yourself. I don’t think you can fully experience your personal creativity if you don’t have that connection with yourself. Instead of having egos, be thankful for what you have and have faith in yourself in what you do and always remain humble. I think black people are the most creative people on this planet. I think us as a whole still don’t understand that. I think if we embody and embrace that, a lot of things we want to see go on, a lot of things we want to hear, a lot of things that just aren’t relevant, we can change that. We can shift the paradigm.
Alexis: What do you want to give back to your community?
Ackurate: I work with kids so I think the best way to give back to the next generation is to give your knowledge, experiences, and stories to them and hopefully they learn from it.
Alexis: What advice do you have for upcoming artist?
Ackurate: No matter what form of art you choose . . . believe in yourself. Learn from the greats, study, research. Don’t stay in one box. Understand that versatility doesn’t mean selling out. It just means bettering yourself and understand that you can stand in many lanes. You’re a creator, be open to mad shit. Creativity is everywhere. Art is everywhere. If it doesn’t fit your purpose, don’t mess with it. Speak highly and positive things about yourself. Life shifts when you start thinking real positive. Be around good energy. Find self, find purpose, and strengthen it.
From just one conversation with him, I’ve learned so much and walked away feeling like I’ve known him for years!
ConsciousFest is excited to be a platform for his gifts & talents.
Join us September 7th as we welcome the 2019 Headliner, Ackurate to ConsciousFest!