BY KATHERINE TWOMEY//
An Interview with Abe the Kid on His 11/11 Show at Songbyrd and Being Creative at Georgetown
New York-raised Abe the Kid is a 21-year-old musician who has just released his newest single “Forgiveness.” Now in his senior year at Georgetown, Abe sits down to talk with GW radio host Kate Twomey about making music in DC and finding his footing after quarantine.
Kate: Okay, hello! Today I’m sat with Abe the Kid to talk about the recent single “Forgiveness” and the upcoming show at Songbyrd. So, how did you start writing music? How did Abe the Kid get birthed into the world?
Abe: Well I always used to write, and I followed my sister when she went to a writing camp in the summer of our sixth grade year. It ended up being really cool and I really like poetry, so I started going to slam poetry and watching it online, and then I started rapping at 13 or 14. I used to try to use beats from online and stuff, but I hated that. So then I learned how to make beats and then by 2017, I really started to be able to make songs that I liked. Which felt really nice! But, yeah…definitely roots in poetry. Rudy Francisco, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell…
Kate: And then you come to Georgetown and release Dirty Skin sophomore year. Since moving to DC and Georgetown specifically, how has your music changed with your environment?
Abe: I just had a lot more experiences with people, and now I write a lot more from different perspectives. When I was younger I would write with a lot of ‘I’, but now I think I wonder more about what other people are experiencing, and what an interesting person’s view of the world might be. Everything still comes from me and my mind, but now being among so many different people, and being in situations I never thought I’d find myself in…it’s made me think about what their truth might be versus mine. That’s really invaded my writing. It happens a bit more in my poetry than in my songwriting, but it’s starting to come out in my songs now too.
Kate: And on releasing music in both DC and New York, what do you think are some of the biggest changes between the live music scenes? Is there anything you’ve come to appreciate about performing in DC?
Abe: I wish I could speak more about the DC scene, but right now I don’t feel like I can speak on it. Over COVID, 2020 and 2021, I really got to know New York City. I got around to all the boroughs and understood all the music happening and the culture of young music coming up in the city right now. But I don’t know that in the same way in DC. I’ve been put onto DC artists, but I think I’ve been influenced by Georgetown more than the city. The books, the teachers, the classes…that being said, though, I definitely learned how to do live performance in DC.
Kate: Speaking of performing in DC, you have an upcoming show at Songbyrd on the 11th! That must be nice in terms of being involved with the DC scene more broadly.
Abe: F*ck yeah! It’s very big. I wasn’t in DC all of 2020, and one of my last memories here was playing Songbyrd on March 1st or something. I was opening for some guys upstairs, and it was my first time playing with a live band. It was the most magical night, and we only did like four songs! Four or five songs, and it was such a spectacular night! And now it’s sick to come back and have the headlining show and a full set. Plus I can put all my friends and the people I love on the act, so it feels like a full circle thing. The band is strong, too. We’ve been doing rehearsals, and now my music is better suited for the live band. At first I didn’t know how to approach it, I mean coming into a room with a whole bunch of musicians and saying this is what we’re doing. Now I can direct more, and I feel like this is a very big show for me to see if I can really execute the look and sound I’m going for.
Kate: Well I’m stoked for it dude! My last question is for the kids that come after us, who maybe want to come into school and find a place for their music; what are your hopes for the future of music at Georgetown?
Abe: I feel really proud of the movement at Georgetown of kids coming up in the creative scene. I definitely didn’t start it, but there’s a lineage of influence that’s really sick to work in. It would be great to see more kids doing that, and being more outward and open about it. I’d love to see Georgetown become more of a home for creativity and music. For kids to throw shows and be good at it, like not only messing around and doing random open mics, but creating spaces for kids to be taken seriously for their talent.
Kate: Capital ‘S’ Shows with capital ‘A’ Artists!
Abe: Exactly, period.