YawnyBlew and amir. are multidisciplinary artists and activists from New York City. Connecting over their mutual love of music and passion for representation, the duo collaborated on a pair of remixes in the fall of 2021 for Yawny’s single “R.I.P,” which were featured in Rolling Stone.
Fueled by their desire to center black queer voices and plus-sized bodies, Yawny and amir. are collaborating on a series of releases through 2023 with a focus on their respective journeys through gender, sexuality, and body image. With these releases, the pair plan to create inclusive conversations with other creatives at their various intersections to spotlight those not often showcased in the mainstream media. This includes fellow artists, models, activists, entrepreneurs, and more.
The first track off the EP “I Need U More” is an interpolation of Yawny’s “R.I.P.” The record is an R&B/Drill hybrid about a bitter breakup and the pain of letting someone go. Taking visual inspiration from the Halloween season and “villain origin story” tropes, the pair are looking to show the full scope of their talents in a release that features them as rappers, singers, producers and creative directors.
The second track is the original YawnyBlew track “R.I.P.” I actually covered his entire album release earlier this year, check that out for my review of this track and his others from the album “Midnight in Brooklyn.”
Once you get to the third track, you’re immediately transferred to a different dimension. This is the “LAVA” remix, and you can feel the heat from the production. It’s definitely a full vibe with the same catchy lyrics.
The third track is the “AQUA” remix, and trust me, it’ll make sense upon your first listen why it’s titled this. The entire track feels like we’re floating above the water through the production with Yawny’s vocals riding the wave perfectly. Definitely another full vibe separate from the others.
The final track is the “SADBOYMUSIC Remix” and let me tell you… I feel like if you didn’t think the others belonged on the radio, THIS ONE does. The production is so solid and Yawny’s vocals are so perfect here that I can honestly hear The Weeknd on the remix-remix version of this! Definitely a perfect way to end the EP.
Through and through, the EP transitions seamlessly, almost making all 5 tracks feel like an extended single. From different genre styles to different production on each track, it’s definitely a must listen all the way through.
I had the chance to interview YawnyBlew about the EP, check it out below!
Bryce Quartz: How did you find yourself making this collaborative remix EP with amir.?
YawnyBlew: Making remixes has become a way for me to revisit songs and connect with more queer talent. When I started putting out feelers for a remix to “R.I.P,” amir. was one of the first people to hit me back and sent so many ideas over. Collaborating was so organic that we were able to come up with three we really loved and decided to put out.
BQ: What was the process like recreating these tracks?
YawnyBlew: The “aqua” and “lava” remixes we did remotely. I sent him vocal stems and he sent back ideas. For “I Need U More,” he did the production and we worked on verses separately but recorded together in New York. It was our first time in the studio together and he had a lot of fun coaching each other and figuring out the performances.
BQ: What was the creative idea behind the visuals?
YB: amir. Is an exceptional photographer and sent me a mood board of ideas. We have a song coming out in November that had a more colorful and quirkier theme, so we decided to keep the “I Need U More”/”R.I.P” images darker in tone and feel. We found some great images online of black hands painted, as well as old images of Diddy and Biggie in the ‘90s that we loved. The fisheye was also inspired by ‘90s hip-hop photography.
BQ: If people can only take away one thing from this EP, what would it be?
YB: The biggest take away I’d like people to have from this EP is how expansive and never ending the creative process is. One song can become so many different cool and unique things. Artists out there, especially indie ones, if you love a record just keep pushing it and reimagining it.
BQ: What can we expect from this new era?
YB: amir. and I just completed our first EP of original this week and it is a really fun mix of hip-hop, pop and house elements. A lot more rapping, a lot of y2k era pop energy. It’s the album we needed as gay boys stuck between TRL and 106 & Park back in the 2000s. We’ll be previewing new music Tuesday October 25th at our digital event with Nowhere MetaVrse.
BQ: What are the vibes like in the studio with amir.?
YB: We have a great time. We just laugh and have fun. We found an incredible engineer named Craig (Little Pioneer Cider House) who lets us be ourselves and compliments our madness. It’s become a beautiful little team. Shoutout to Sadboy and Coldpresspapi as well, who brought some energy to our sessions.
BQ: Thank you for taking the time to answer those questions for us, YawnyBlew!
Be sure to stream “R.I.P.” by YawnyBlew & amir. on all platforms now, and follow them on social media below!