CHS student interviews award-winning producer

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By Dasol Lee

The first thing I notice about Gawvi is his voice. Relaxed and easy, it gives the impression that the speaker is extremely down-to-earth, relatable.

But Gawvi is not your average 20-something-year-old. A hip-hop and EDM artist and Dove Award-winning producer, Gawvi has had millions of streams on Spotify. He has produced music for Grammy-winning hip-hop artist Lecrae and has worked with such highly sought-after producers as Rodney Jerkins (think Michael Jackson, Maroon 5, Sam Smith).

Talking to Gawvi, one begins to see recent chart toppers from a different perspective. As he discusses the changes in EDM music, for example, he explains the breakthrough power of Avicii’s hit song “Wake Me Up.” By blending country and EDM, “Wake Me Up” had opened many eyes to the possibilities within the EDM industry. Gawvi also discusses the Weeknd’s sound (and how it, like most music, is a new take on old genres), his admiration for Calvin Harris as a musician, and the raised expectations for today’s DJs, who are now basically required to produce their own music. As an outsider looking in on the music industry, I don’t see what Gawvi sees. Having the opportunity to put on his lens of the world, therefore, was an eye-opening experience.

Gawvi has been shaped by many talented artists along the way. As a teenager, Gawvi worked as an intern for Pharrell Williams. He describes how Pharrell let him sit and watch as a sort of “fly on the wall” as he worked his magic. Pharrell’s studio was dedicated to the production of a wide array of genres, and Gawvi recalls hoping to become, like Pharrell, “a producer who could do it all.”

Despite his many achievements, incredible experiences, and great aspirations, Gawvi is humble and is, in fact, extremely down-to-earth. He talks about missing his wife and child when he’s on the road and how it’s hard to not always be there when she’s growing up so fast. He is eager to discuss his beginnings. He describes the impact of his sister, who he could always rely on for honest feedback about his beats and who encouraged him to pursue his dreams in music.

Gawvi is, in the end, altogether relatable, inspiring — human. He embodies the ambition and drive that bring us success and the love and feeling in humanity. Check out his passionate new album We Belong: soundcloud.com/gawvi.

For opportunities like interviewing award-winning artists, join the Spectrum, Canton High School’s student newspaper! Come to a Monday after-school meeting for more information about our club.

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