How did you all find out you were nominated. Were you sent a letter, did someone from HARA call you?
When the final Ballot came out, being voting members of HARA we saw our name on the ballot. We also received a nice letter in the mail congratulating us and giving us details of what to expect the night of the event should we win.
What member of the group submitted the album to HARA?
The band leader, Shawn Livingston Moseley, after full approval from the other members which include Navid Najafi, Stephen Inglis, Jon Hawes, Jason Segler, Kanohowailuku Helm and also special guest The Broke Moke’s, Punahele, Scott Othoro and Erika Elona.
Being nominated for anything is a sign of respect would you agree?
It really is. Knowing that the community of musicians around you care enough to get behind your efforts is one of the most respectful things any artist could hope for, ever.
How familiar are you with the other nominees and the history of the category?
Very intimate with both the nominees and the history. Navid, our main emcee is a strong and active member of the local Hip Hop scene performing and supporting almost all the different Nominees at some point along the way. Shawn put a lot of energy behind the local Hip Hop scene since 2007 after making Hip Hop albums in New York City for years prior. Shawn, alongside a couple other friends put a lot of time into getting the Hip Hop category that was for years paired with R&B separated and on it’s own. It really did not make a lot of sense to be grouped with R&B and sadly created ill feelings for a few people within the hip hop community. Thankfully that is a problem that has been fixed and the community has no good reason not to grow.
Is it truly a Hip Hop category?
Yes. Hip Hop has evolved into many forms over the years and they all have presence here in Hawaii. Some focus on using a live band, which is what Evasive Species and the Deadbeats do, others make beats, use samples and otherwise. Both approaches are great expressions of the art form and deserve equal credit to sustaining the musical style locally.
In all seriousness, how badly do you want to win?
We already have, we made a great record. As far as the award goes, it’s not going to make us any more proud of what we have accomplished as a band and the support we continue to receive and provide to our local Hip Hop community. Evasive Species is thankful for the nomination of course, but more thankful for the other artist that submitted in the preliminary round showing their support for the category and keeping it alive. Who ever wins will get our full respect no matter what.