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INTERVIEW: 8ky

It’s been roughly a decade since SkyBlu, alongside his uncle RedFoo, broke into the mainstream as electronic dance duo LMFAO. From then, fame skyrocketed their brand into orbit with tracks synonymous with the club lifestyle like “Rock Party Anthem,” “Sexy and I Know It,” and “Shots,” solidifying their positions in pop culture and party-dom. While always rooted in hardcore hip hop, the duo rapped over electronic beats, something fresh at the time, giving their brand an untouchable spot in the music landscape.The accolades started piling, including a spot at Super Bowl XLVI, an international tour, and wins across the board at The Grammys, Teen Choice Awards, VMA’s, People’s Choice, Kids’ Choice, Juno, Billboard, Latin Billboard, Movie Awards, MuchMusic, VEVOCertified, World Music Awards, and other countless trophies. “Party Rock Anthem” sold over 10 mil. Hell, who could forget about that Shuffle Bot. Stardom came strong, as did more partying, more women, and more antics. To be fair, that was Sky in his 20’s.

Today, Sky (now 8ky or 8klyer 6ordy derived from his real name Skyler Gordy, 86 representing the year he was born) is flying solo, trekking a path that’s not so easy but worth the travel. While he’s forever grateful for the career LMFAO has helped him launch, the transition into 6ky is more an evolution than a continuation of who he was. Also, he’s just hit 30.

Fxck Yeah: Chaos to Consciousness comes in the form of a unique concept album with an equally ambitious release and promotional strategy. “Fxck Yeah,” as 8ky recites is an expression of true contentment. Collaborations include Grammy Latin nominated rapper Sensato, K.G. Superstar, Kitty K, Shev, and Chacho Jones. Embracing his deep, spiritual roots and his growth over time, Chaos to Consciousness delivers 8ky’s perspective on the duality of life and a “body of work” that fancies itself more of a movement than an album.

We’re transitioning into a new year, and you’ve personally just hit 30 which is a mile stone. For those of us who’ve known you for LMFAO, fill us in on the last 12 months. Any key moments?

It’s been amazing growing experience for me putting together the most intimate body of work so far, releasing it, and having a deep plan in promoting it. We’re going to promote this for the next two years, and this is one of my first interviews for this. In LMFAO, people kind of changed up the collaboration with me and RedFoo. I would write songs that I thought would help the brand and impress Foo because he is my uncle, 11 years older than me. I took some time off to really find who I am as an artist and really be able to express myself to the world. In 2016, I did just that. Fxck yeah.

Chaos to Consciousness. It’s honestly one of the coolest album names I’ve heard in a long time. Tell us how you chose this title.

It’s very deep. Growing up my father was very spiritual and studied all the world religions and was very philosophical. When I was young he taught me to meditate. Growing up I was always finding and ended up in 12 different schools. You know, I was the new guy and was good at sports so I’d take the jocks’ positions and girls. I’d have to throw down. I learned five different martial arts. After 12 different schools, I dropped out of school and never got a GED, lived in my car, and I was in the hood a lot. Things got crazy and we’d do really gnarly stuff. I could’ve went to jail for 25 years so I said, “No, I’m out.” I only did this stuff to make enough money for a studio and do my music. I saved enough money to go to Miami with my uncle. We toured the world. It wasn’t right away where things were poppin’. For a long time we did shows in front of three people. We eventually became one of the biggest groups. Then, came the temptation, the girls, everything at our fingertips. When Foo and I went separate ways I had a bad back injury and couldn’t walk for three months.

Damn. Really?

Yeah, man. I had all these things against me. And so…I’m all about art and creativity but now I’m about business. After parting ways with Foo I did two albums for free – one called Rebel Music and one called We Evolve Every Day, which was a collaboration with my boy Shwayze. I was constantly, you know, finding myself as an artist and creator and how I could express myself. I wanted to do something serious so I kept meditating, but at the same time I partied more and did more gnarly things. So, there’s this duality to life and I feel it’s so beautiful. That’s what joy is, when you have the balance of the hectic and the calm. I started off with seven songs, and even have three albums in the can that will come out after this. I did them out of order. I feel like this music comes through me and I listen to these songs over and over in my home studio. I figure out the best way for it to go. Then I’d be like, “Man, I don’t know if the world will be ready for this.” After seven songs I stopped writing and let it flow. The rest of the album just came from the heart. A lot of them were first takes. I found this unique relationship with my music. I’m writing so fast now. It’s amazing.

Do you feel a lot of this deep, profound way of making your new music comes with your age and where you are now?

When I hear a song I feel the concept and it resonates with what I’m going through in my life. I’ve seen so much, but I feel like I’m just starting at 30. We had, like, 13 tracks and I just kept going. We then had 25 songs. Everyone’s like, “We can’t put out 25 songs. But it all fits. How are we going to do this?” I talked to my boy Reek who’s my manager and I said my 30th birthday is coming up. That’s a big one. I’m never celebrating a birthday again. People only feel old because they believe they are. I told him we should come out with 30 songs for my 30th birthday. If you listen to the album, the first 15 are Chaos – that’s the overall vibe. The last 15 are Conscious. It’s like a gradient. It represents who I am. Coming from LMFAO, people expect me to be one thing. It’s kind of being more difficult than being a new artist because there are already expectations. I have to do something tremendous to show who I am. I’m here to be at the top and be one of the greatest to do it. The only way to do that is to create from the heart.

As we mentioned earlier, your base already knows you for LMFAO. While Chaos to Consciousness still carries some of those elements, it’s safe to say it goes in another direction. What can both old fans and new listeners expect? Thirty songs is a lot of content.

I really believe there’s something in the album for everyone. It really helped me grow. Some lyrics later on mean even more to me.  A lot of people of who have listened, depending on where they are in life, resonate with certain songs. Some will connect more with the first 15 about girls, drinking, and drugs, because that’s where they are in life. They’re in the Chaos. I also have some very spiritual friends, some gurus, who are in their 60’s and 70’s who tell me the second half is unbelievable to them. Some people can listen to the first half and hear, “p*ssy this, p*ssy that” and think it’s just typical rap shit. But they see the story. The get to the second half and sense the body of work. For those who are at the point in their lives transitioning from Chaos to Consciousness, the second half means a lot more to them.

I know it’s like picking babies when artist is asked this but do you have a personal favorite off the record?

I believe it’s the spectrum of life. Each one of these resonates me in a different place in an equal way. When I wake up in the morning I may gravitate more towards “Fall in Line” but if I’m drunk at club it’s “Bon Appetit.” They’re all my favorite songs. Artists always say they’re never done with their art; it’s never finished. I don’t believe that anymore. When we were done we looked at each and said it took six of us to do this. We hugged other and felt like we already won. It’s perfect to us. We hear the album and it represents who we are. It’s not just about me, it’s about Reek, and Seven, and Tect. This is us. It’s so beautiful to make art you love 100% through and through. I love LMFAO and am thankful for it but people don’t know what went on behind the scenes. I loved the first album. It came from the soul. The second one was great but there were so much politics behind it that it was bittersweet.

Are there any music videos planned? I kind of seeing this happening in like short films.

I’ve already written every music for every song. Each one is a short film and when released one after the other, it’s a feature length movie. There you go, my dude!

Whether you’re a teen in high school or a housewife in her 40’s, what do you hope listeners will take away from the album?

You can use different words besides chaos and consciousness but everyone goes through that hecticness. For me, I party. That’s my Chaos. For others, it can be arguing with their spouses. For others it can be puffin’ a J just to relax. What will people take away from this album? Some people have been through it all. It’s hard for them to get to 15. It doesn’t resonate with them on a musical or lyrical level, and that’s fine. They haven’t evolved all the way yet to create a record that completely resonates. My whole upbringing is all music. I work hard to make music that resonates all the time. Once people start listening to the project, there are 30 songs so everyone will take away something different.

Can you tell us about any tours coming up in relation to the album? Maybe even special shows?

We will be throwing some secret shows. We are looking into tours right now. We have things up our sleeve in January.

Where do you go from here? Any plans for when you finally come up for air?

In LMFAO till now I’ve never taken a vacation. When Foo and I were number one in the world we’d still keep working on new songs. The thing is, you know, we really take everything in. We can be at the club and be like, “Fuck yeah, we got it.” But this is my life. I love my life and I don’t need to take a break from it. I’m always going to be pushing the project and the evolution of the project.

When it’s time to finally hang up the mic, what do you want to be known for? How does 8kyler 6ordy want to be remembered?

I want to be known for raising the consciousness of the planet through music as art. Really making art through music. I feel people can listen to the album and learn to ask the right questions after hearing different things. I want to see the world smile. There’s too much negativity in this world.

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Keep up with 8ky 6lu on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/the8ky/.

by Erman Baradi

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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