Whookilledkenny is here to remind you “it’s never personal, it’s Strictly Business.” Hailing from Austin, Texas but now based in Los Angeles, the rising star is best known for his unique blend of R&B and hip-hop, exploding onto the scene with his one-of-a-kind voice that demands attention.
Growing up in the church, a young Whookilledkenny actually started as a Christian rapper, thanks to the nudge from his grandmother to rap about his faith. Soon, his talents made noise around town, as he received nothing but positive feedback from his Christian remix of Durrough’s “Ice Cream Paint Job.”
Soon, he would make the decision to make secular music, unveiling his debut project Pay The Fee back in 2019. Fast forward to 2022, he drops his highly-anticipated EP titled Strictly Business, spearheaded by lead single “Worth It.”
AllHipHop spoke with Whookilledkenny about his name, his background, the new release, and more!
AllHipHop: What inspired your name?
Whookilledkenny: I originally used to go by Kenny Gee, but I had to change my name when I learned that I could face copyright issues due to the saxophone player Kenny G. I wanted something that would sound like a band or a group, not just one person. I thought it would look cool on festival flyers.
AllHipHop: How would you describe your sound?
Whookilledkenny: Player and luxurious or lavish. I talk about my lifestyle and real life events. If you live a similar lifestyle you can relate to it. Living in LA the past few years I’ve also added a different bounce to my music from working with producers from out here.
AllHipHop: Biggest influences?
Whookilledkenny: Wiz and Travis Scott. The influence that Wiz had when I was in high school is something I would love to have in the near future and being from Texas, Travis is one of my favorite artists of all time.
AllHipHop: At what point did you realize you could do music for a living?
Whookilledkenny: In elementary school, I knew I wanted to be the President or a rapper. Being President seemed like a long shot and at the same time I was performing raps at different churches across Dallas and I fell in love with performing and making music.
AllHipHop: New single and visual for “Worth It,” what inspired the record?
Whookilledkenny: I’m inspired by people in my life. I make music everyday so whatever is going on that day is reflected in the music
AllHipHop: Where was the video shot? Best memory?
Whookilledkenny: Pacific Palisades. Best memory is how player that area is… I would live there easily. We really just drove around the neighborhood and shot different scenes on whatever streets looked dope. We shot a scene in a front yard and the owner came out, told us he was a documentary film maker and that we could shoot outside his house for as long as we need to so shout to him
AllHipHop: What’s one thing you want fans to get from your Strictly Business EP?
Whookilledkenny: I make hits.
AllHipHop: What is it you want fans to get from your story?
Whookilledkenny: Keep pushing and don’t give up. If you know what your goals are, work everyday to get closer to them. I dropped a project in 2019 and ended up taking it down because it didn’t stream well. I used the entire year of 2020 to work on music and to understand the marketing and the business side of things. As soon as 2021 hit, we hit the ground running and haven’t looked back since.
Before that when I was in high school in Austin, I was selling tickets to music festivals to all the kids in my school because if you solde enough tickets they would let you be the opener. No matter what, I’ve always figured out a way to keep going.
AllHipHop: How was it working with Buddah Bless and Hollywood Cole?
Whookilledkenny: I met them both during a trip I took to Atlanta. I got a lot of music with both of them.
AllHipHop: Explain your “pay the fee” mentality.
Whookilledkenny: It’s universal. Everybody paying the fee to somebody. And everybody collecting a fee from somebody.
AllHipHop: 3 things you need in the studio?
Whookilledkenny: Weed, backwoods, and a lighter.
AllHipHop: Goals yourself as an artist at this point of your career?
Whookilledkenny: Touring is my main goal at the moment. I get dm’s from people in different cities telling me “come to New York” or “come to Chicago” so I’d really love to touch the road in 2023 and meet all my fans that have been supporting me.