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Melbourne rapper REMI will be hitting up the stage at this year’s Groovin’ the Moo, and it’s a festival he’s no stranger to, “It was the first festival I went to as a punter, so it’s kinda come back full circle” he says.

Groovin’ the Moo will be taking REMI and the line up to regional towns and cities throughout Australia, and it’s one of the few of its kind.

“People seem to appreciate it even more than maybe cities, just because they’re not used to it. So [we’re] really excited to get out and play to a bunch of cats that might not even know who we are. That’s always nice,” REMI says.

While REMI is familiar with GTM as a punter, he’s also created memories there as a performer, “I got to jump up…with Delta Riggs, which was a vibe for sure”. On getting up on stage with someone from this year’s line up, REMI hints, “I can’t really say who…but we’ll definitely jump up with some different crew this year.”

Jumping on stage with Delta Riggs is only the start of musicians REMI has worked with and the rapper has also appeared with the likes of Danny Brown and Joey Bada$$. “It’s always a really good learning experience seeing someone else who’s in their prime, playing at a much, much further stage in their career than you are – it kinda pushes you to learn from it,” he says.

With a new album in the works, REMI and producer Sensible J have been hard at work. “It’s coming along swell,” he says.

“We’re going to release the first song in a month, month and a half, which is real dope. And the album will be out by June or July.”

With the first track set to be released by Groovin’, you can bet you’ll be hearing a preview of the new album and the new direction REMI and Sensible J have taken.

“It’s a much more cohesive and much more introspective record, and all the songs have a purpose in the theme of the album,” REMI says.

What’s refreshing to see in an artist like REMI is their approach to creating an album as a body of work. “Back in the day the thought of releasing two good songs and the rest of the album [being] shit, it was blasphemous, but now that’s kinda the regular,” he says.

REMI, understands why, though, he’s part of the generation where vinyl went out and singles came in, it was “the iPod mini era…so the album kinda took a back seat” he says, “but I don’t think that it’s necessarily a turn to the good”.

“[Though] it’s awesome to see a lot of young black faces coming up… a lot more freedom seems to be coming through,” he says, “I think that it’s stronger than it’s ever been and it’s only going to keep getting better.”

Even after winning a multitude of awards, REMI is level headed and humble about his success, “It’s an added bonus” he says with a smile. “Now [I] get to do music as a full time job – it doesn’t get better than that. Having people appreciate the music you made in your best friend’s spare bedroom… anymore than that and you’re kinda tripping.”

Written by Claire Rosenberg

Photo Credit Michelle Grace Hunder

When & Where: Groovin’ the Moo, Bendigo Showgrounds – April 30