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Songtrust Spotlight: Yvng Swag

Tyshawn Johnson, also known as YVNG SWAG, is a young, millennial Hip-Hop artist, dancer, comedian, and entertainer who was born and raised in Kent County, Maryland. YVNG is an acronym that stands for Young, Valuable 'N' Gifted. With more than 1.4 million followers on Instagram and 3.0 million on TikTok, he is considered to be one of the top entertainers in the Maryland/D.M.V. areas as well as a Brand ambassador influencer for several fortune 500 companies who have been featured on major networks such as Teen Nick, Nickelodeon, Netflix, and the hit show "MTV's Wild N Out" with celebrity Nick Cannon.

Yvng Swag

WHAT OR WHO INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO MUSIC?

DJ WildChild DNA and my mom. WildChild told me I should start making music with the numbers I was gaining from my dance videos, and my mom has a beautiful voice that kept me in the choir for years, so it runs in the family. I would always rap in school too.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE OF MUSIC AND PERFORMANCE? HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PHILOSOPHY AND STYLE AS AN ARTIST?

My style of music is fun, a good vibe. Performance is always a show, you don’t know what to expect but you would definitely be entertained!

WHAT DRIVES YOU TO CREATE, AND HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS FOR YOURSELF IN MUSIC?

What drives me to create are my fans! And myself, actually my own music. I can listen and dance to it which inspires me to make more, to be even better, and make better records. My success in music has been great! But on a scale of 1-10, I feel like I’m at a 7 right now. Soon I’m going to be on top, once I get these numbers even more poppin' than they are now.

THROUGHOUT YOUR CAREER, WHO HAS HELPED YOU THE MOST WITH DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORT?

My parents have helped me the most and supported me throughout my whole career! They gave me advice and different ideas to do once I had a platform going for myself.

SOMETIMES BEING IN THIS BUSINESS CAN BE OVERWHELMING. DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR MAINTAINING PERSPECTIVE AND NOT SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF?

It can be overwhelming. My advice is to just make sure you have people that you can talk to and vent with who have an open mind and that can understand, and to always remember what comes with it. And block the rest of the noise.

WHAT CAN OR SHOULD THE NEWER GENERATION OF MUSIC CREATORS, AND MORE SPECIFICALLY BLACK MUSIC CREATORS, FOCUS ON AS THEY ENVISION A NEW MUSIC FUTURE?

They should be focused on making great, inspiring music as they did back in the '80s-'90s with feel-good music! Back when the lyrics really mattered and related to people.

WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE THE MUSIC INDUSTRY DO TO TRULY BE A REFLECTION OF THE CULTURE AND COMMUNITY IN WHICH IT CREATES?

We should all get together and help each other out and have a good time like how we have family reunions. It should be a time when we as artists should get together, talk, network, and just have a good time, no matter how big you are. 

BLACK ARTISTS, SONGWRITERS, AND CREATORS HEAVILY INFLUENCE MOST TRENDS IN MUSIC, ENTERTAINMENT, AND SOCIAL MEDIA - BUT THEY OFTEN DON'T RECEIVE THE RECOGNITION THEY DESERVE. DO YOU HAVE ADVICE FOR DEVELOPING CREATORS WHEN IT COMES TO PROTECTING THEIR WORK?

Just keep being creative. There isn't really anything we can do about getting the recognition we deserve, what matters is if you stop or not, so just don’t stop.

DO YOU HAVE ANY OTHER ADVICE FOR YOUNG ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS JUST STARTING THEIR CAREERS, BASED ON WHAT YOU’VE EXPERIENCED?

When it’s moving slowly at the bottom and you feel you are not going anywhere, keep going! Don’t ever give up or you won’t see your full potential, and invest 90% of the money you make in yourself and your career!

WHAT DO YOU HAVE COMING UP IN 2022?

NEW MUSIC, NEW VISUALS! That’s all I’m saying because that's my main focus for 2022.

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