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Looking at the quality of artists at the moment, it seems hip-hop is thriving in the Capital. In this three part series we focus on a stalwart in the game, Costello, one for the future, Mythill Grim, and the much-hyped Kojaque about just how healthy they think the scene is.
James Costello, better known as simply, Costello, is one of the pioneering names in Dublin hip-hop. We speak to him about his city.
Yeah, it wasn’t too bad. It was a new idea and it was good to get out of Dublin for a video. I was working with a new fella on it called Darren Gill, he also did another video with us where I played Lunitic.
It was a tribute video for his anniversary. But yeah, ‘A Page of History’ got a nice bit of feedback, especially on Facebook.
It seems like all the major media outlets wrote about us at first but haven’t written about all the stuff we’ve released since then, so I think it’s lacking on that end.
How do you feel Dublin hip hop as a whole is coming along?
It’s definitely improving all the time. I lived in the same house as Lethal Dialect back in the day then both of us took off in our own way.
Jambo is the same buzz, he’s not getting featured on the radio but some of his videos have over 100,000 hits.
There’s definitely people plugging into it. I was away in Bern, Moscow and Vienna this year reppin’ Dublin hip-hop which was big for me as well.
They really bought into it. It opened my eyes to the fact that there’s even a buzz outside of Dublin. You just need to know the right heads.
It always crops up, but do you think people are ready to accept hip hop with an Irish accent?
It’s definitely hard to get out there, because when you think of any mainstream Irish hip-hop it’s the corniest music. When you come up with a Dublin accent people seem to switch off. But on the flip side there are a lot of underground heads who see the potential with the lyricism and beat making being so unique.
I noticed myself in Moscow over pronouncing words to make sure they knew what I was saying!
What’s your favourite thing about Dublin City?
I look at five or six years ago and I barely knew any body in the hip-hop scene and now most of the hip-hop heads are my best mates.
I could definitely see it growing but we’re still at a semi-established stage. There are a lot of artists and good music but no industry to guarantee a week’s wage.
The talent is there but that’s definitely the next step. It’s exciting though, and nice to be waving the flag for Irish hip-hop.