Since bursting onto the music scene, Berna has set out to make his mark with his unique style and flow. With a range of noteworthy appearances on GRM, as well as platforms like [email protected], the East London rapper has carved out a path to success for himself. We caught up with him to talk about the journey thus far and the new EP Poor Little Rich Kid.
To this day you have one of the most recognised freestyles on [email protected] because it spoke about some harsh realities of life that many people relate too. Did you always intend on being a relatable role model in your community?
“Yeah, I feel like, When I rap people can relate to it because man’s just talking the realness really. Do you know what I mean? Especially if you are from where I’m from, you know what man’s talking about. We all know. I feel like when I stay stuff in my bars it connects with people. I get fans that say, ‘I felt that one’”.
You are well known for bars and punchlines. How do they come about?
“With me like, when man started rapping it just came. I don’t know, I’ve just always been freestyling as a kid and that with the mandem.
So, I feel like overtime I’ve developed cause the [email protected] was the first thing man ever wrote down. So with that, I Just continued writing and writing, and my skillset as an artist grew.
You know when you have things to say, it’s not really hard to find things to say. If you do what you’re saying it just come to your head, unless you’re creating stories but man’s not creating stories”
What has been the process of putting the EP together been like?
“Even though this is my first project I don’t feel as though I’ve been through the hardship like some other artists have been when making a project. It’s just been strenuous init, because it’s been delayed.
Everyday man’s thinking for 2/3 years bro, ‘I have to pattern this, this, that’, Do you know what I mean? Something has just not connected so it was just long for man. I’m talking in terms of the hard work man put into the songs, it’s just been frustrating that I wasn’t able to put it out sooner.
I’m just happy that the fans have some new music from Berna”
Do you consider yourself a perfectionist?
“100%. If you knew how many times mans changed the track list, yeah, it’s all brazy. Like the track list right now is completely different to what it was at the beginning of the year”
In one of your earliest interviews as an established artist you mentioned wanting to collaborate with the likes of ‘AJ Tracey, Hardy Caprio and J Hus’ is that still the same to this present day?
“I’d still keep them but there are definitely new guys I would work with as well. I mess with M1llionz, he’s cold. I mess with Teeway, he’s hard. Bunch of drill music, these guys are cold. Unknown T, Cold. Digga D, Cold. Dutch, Cold. Centeral Cee, Cold.
I’m always down for collaboration init, if it makes sense, if the energy is right. I’m not out ere forcing nothing but I’m definitely down.”
Will there be a tour in store for the ‘Berna’ fans following the release of the EP?
“I don’t know, I might but I have another big project with features coming. I look to tour with that one, but I don’t really know. I definitely want to start doing the shows, seeing the fans, long time since I’ve bucked them. Actually, I buck them every day to be honest, but on a stage, it’ll be lit, it’ll be wild”
Do you have a performance horror story when things just went wrong?
“All right cool, imagine at Lovebox I performed on Z Dot’s stage. After the performance, some yutes gone ‘Ayo Berna take my drink’. Me I am charged, So I’ve taken and drank the drink. Best believe yeah, the next 20 minutes I was dizzy, hallucinating, sweating.
I said “yo, Donny’s spiked man”. Like, the drink had to of been spiked. That’s my biggest horror story. I remember I was out for the day, my broski had to take care of man. They were probably thinking “What happened to man” haha It was fucked.”
Speaking of bad times, how has the pandemic been for you? What have your days been looking like?
“If I’m honest I’m just out here doing the same stuff. It hasn’t really affected me I can’t lie. It hasn’t stopped me from anything I really want to do. It hasn’t stopped me from going studio or anything like that.”
2021 Hopefully we’re moving away from the pandemic, more good vibes and we already know Berna ‘Won’t stop’ so what can we expect to see from you in the new year?
“In the new year there will be a bunch of collabs, maybe a new project. Hopefully shows, more live events. Just bigger and better. I’m going to be more consistent.”
Check out Berna’s latest EP Poor Little Rich Kid below right now on GRM Daily.