South Florida has become a hotbed for rap in recent years. With the rise of youthful emcees like Xxxtentacion, Kodak Black, Smokepurpp and Lil Pump, it’s tough to ignore the region’s budding talent. Another artist rising fast and moulding a name for himself in the scene is Wifisfuneral.
Hailing originally from the colder climates of the Bronx, Wifi had an adjustment to make, but he quickly made Broward County his home. That cultural change, along with his Puerto Rican decent may explain the variety in the young upstart’s rap styles. You want hype tracks, in-depth content, or just straight bars – Wifi’s got you covered all around.
During our phone call, I got to dive in and witness his growth and the creative process behind his most recent project, ‘Boy Who Cried Wolf’. It was assuring to hear him in a much happier place than he was when he dropped his previous project, ‘Black Heart Revenge’. Wifi and I also touched on various topics ranging from his tour with Xxxtentacion, his viral stage diving incident, signing with Interscope’s Alamo Records imprint, anime and wrestling…
You’re originally from the Bronx and your dad was an MC too, so did that drive you to rap? Did you play any instrument in school? And what kind of music was playing in the house when you were growing up?
Honestly, I didn’t play any instrument growing up. I didn’t play sports or anything. All I really did was write rhymes when I was seven. Growing up all I would listen to is boom bap music, salsa, merengue and bachata.
You’ve been on tour with Xxxtentaction and performing at festivals like Rolling Loud. What are the biggest things that you’ve taken from being on the road?
Even before touring with X, I’ve been on 5 tours, but touring with X was the biggest tour so far. Being on the road in general, the experience of being able to wake up in a different city, in a different part of the county and doing what you do as a hobby and a career, that’s probably the most exciting thing. I’m pretty much doing everything thing that I was doing at 14-15 years old as an occupation.
With the recent rise of the south Florida rap scene, how do you feel about the come up of the landscape and other artists? And, who are some of your favourite artists?
I don’t have a group of favourite artists. Every artist from south Florida is my favourite, honestly. I love the whole movement or scene, or whatever people want to call it. I’m proud of it, since Florida really came from nothing. As far as myself, I feel as if I am the “Waldo” of it. I look at it from a third person perspective and enjoy it. I won’t deny Florida in any way; Florida made me the man I am today.
Why did you name your project ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’?
It’s a mixtape. It’s a simple fact of how in my whole career I did not take anything seriously. From ‘Black Hearts Revenge’, my first mixtape ’til now, I feel like I didn’t take a lot of things seriously. I felt like in a sense ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’, a lot of people expected me to do “this” or “that,” but I feel like you should live up to your own expectations in a general sense. I feel like this is the first project I have taken seriously; it was me solidifying that statement.
Do you feel like the content has changed from album to album? From ‘When Hell Falls’, ‘Black Hearts Revenge’ and ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’? You’re going through and overcoming a lot of things in your life and now you seem to be in a clearer head space.
Yeah and for the most part I feel like I’m really focused. I really know what the fuck I want to do. I wake up every day with a fucking goal and I feel like if I don’t reach that goal every day, ain’t shit complete. A lot of things are different; my mind set is different. As a human, I’m different; I don’t partake in a lot of dumb shit anymore. A lot has changed down to me establishing a relationship with a lot of people that I needed in my life to just things I had to go through personally. I feel like every project had to go through a different life experience. If I did go through that life experience, I did not know how to express it into words at the time.
That really comes out in your projects.
Yeah. I’ve kind of realised that I am more of a project artist than a single artist, so I really appreciate the fact when the people love the projects more than my singe because I feel like a project can speak more than an actual single.
Being where you are at now, what advice would you give to Izzy Kills, Mozart Lafare and Winter Jacket?
Stop changing your fucking name and don’t listen to anybody. Every gut feeling that you’ve had about yourself is the best thing that you’ve ever felt and never go against it. If I would’ve told myself this earlier in my career, I would have been in a way better position, but I’m thankful for where I’m at now.
This is an extract from Viper’s AW17 NOMAD issue. Buy physical and digital copies via Viper World.
Words by Jarred Howard
Photos by Dale Algo
Styling by Jahzeel Delgado