In our second instalment of the New Era artist collaboration, we travelled to Berlin to catch up with Serious Klein,
Since the tender age of 12 years old, Klein has been writing explosive rap music that speaks to his lived experience as a young German-Ghanaian artist. Since releasing his first mixtapes back in 2010, he’s performed with Alicia Keys, worked with DJ Khalil (Eminem, A$AP Rocky, Drake), and cemented himself as one of the most inventive players in the German hip-hop game.
Klein grew up in the post-industrial Ruhr region of north-west Germany. He was raised on a diet of Tupac, but also the classics coming from his mother; legends like Luther Vandross, Kool & The Gang, and Salt-N-Pepa.
“I’m all about pushing the roots and the movement of being black in Germany,” he says. “Sometimes it gets a little bit difficult, but I think it’s one of the most important things for someone in my position to talk about the things you go through and your everyday life… You should use your voice to give back to the community and everyone that’s around you.”
Though born in Germany, Klein feels more connected to his Ghanaian heritage. When he’s in Ghana, everything seems to inspire him. Afrobeats and Ghanaian rhythms certainly influence, but it’s the little things that spark off his art: the weather, the skin, the hair. It’s his roots. “I love everything about Ghana: the culture, the community, the art – it’s incredible… You can get inspired by a wall, by the way people behave,” he says. “When I can shoot a music video in Ghana, I will do it.”
Agency – Kinc
Agency Lead – Paul Campbell & Niels Verhaert
Production – Crater
Producers – Alex Rollings & Simon Morehead
DP/Edit – Mitch Noakes
Photography – Tim Burrow
Location – Berlin, Germany
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