On his song “Happy Holidays,” rapper Digital Wes talks about shooting rabbits on Easter, Thanksgiving adultery, and blood under the Christmas mistletoe.
He's a strange dude.
Based in Antelope Valley, he got his start performing at his grandparents' church as a child, making beats on his grandmother's electric piano.
Now 21, he's an amazing dancer, and mixes hard rock into his performances. The video below shows his dazzling performance 2012's West Coast Hip-Hop Awards, held at the L.A. Convention Center.
Born Wesley Harris, he describes his childhood in terms of music: a mixture of '90s rap and his father's favorite genre, the blues. “When I was little it was 'Tootsee Roll' and B.B. King,” he says.
But it was his love for Jimi Hendrix that got him to pick up an electric guitar when he was 16. You can hear the influence on his songs like “Caregiver.”
When he was younger, Wes got into some trouble, that he prefers not talk about. In high school, he and his friends formed a hip-hop crew called 2-2-0, or Second to None. 2-2-0 won second place at both the Cali Dance Fest and Showdown L.A. tournaments in 2010.
Seriously, though, his dancing is awesome. He does this thing where he flops around as if possessed by a spirit.
“I wouldn't say I'm a good dancer,” he counters with a laugh. “Those moves that I do when I'm performing aren't really specific 'dance moves.' They're more of me just being in the moment and emotion of the song. I really get into my myself and the energy of my songs when I'm on stage. It's almost like I'm drunk in spirit.”
MTV helped promote his 2013 album The Illumination, which contained “Happy Holidays.” You can hear its single “I Go Fanatic,” below.
He's currently at work on an EP, slated for release next year, that further explores his rock roots. He also admits his raps have changed as much as he has since he wrote The Illumination two years ago, when he was 19 and Santa Claus was fair game.
Now, he's on a more meaningful mission with his music.
“I feel like theres no community, and a lot of us are missing that. We can all come together and do a lot better than we can by ourselves,” he says. “I was raised by hip-hop. I couldn't talk to anyone else. That was it for me. So I hope my music is it for someone else.”
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