TK The Architect will be playing The Well on June 7th as part of Northside’s Music Showcase. The New York native’s blend of hip-hop and live instrumentation is his signature sound nowadays, but that wasn’t always the case.
The musician and producer, whose real name is Zach Takayuki Zanghi, says he has always loved music. He got involved at a young age playing in various bands and spent time as a guitar tech/stage manager while on the road.
Take his debut Life In Stereo, for example; TK was a rap force that was on the rise. “Life in Stereo was a huge moment for me. Kenny Truhn, who produced the whole record, provided me with a cohesive collection of classic-feeling beats. I feel like I had something to prove as an MC, and he recognized that.”
With his following project, 2016’s Blue Season, he still had something to prove again but this time, about his music. “With Blue Season and everything after it, I finally found a way to naturally incorporate other parts of my musicianship,” said TK, who said experience playing in bands and writing songs led him to fuse the two. “I feel as though I’ve come to a place where I can naturally incorporate all the different aspects of my musicality to create music that is uniquely me.”
But, TK says he has always a passion for hip-hop music. “I’ve loved hip-hop since I first started learning about its roots,” he explained. “I’ve rapped since then, but I didn’t think anyone would take me seriously,” TK says.
TK would always look for more outlets and exposure to build on his craft. “While I kept playing in bands, freestyling was something I would do for fun at parties. I’ve always written lyrics for the bands I was a part of, and this was just another form of expression for me.”
TK’s sound is a unique one you won’t find in today’s pop music scene.
“I think my music is very representative of my upbringing, the music I’ve loved over the years, and the people around me,” says TK whose combination of live instrumentation and hip-hop freestyling may remind some of Lauryn Hill. “I’m constantly finding new ways to incorporate things that inspire me into my music.”
TK admits that the music scene is always changing, but says there are parts of his sound that will always remain.
“There’s people killing it in music who are incorporating all sorts of new elements,” he says. “I think there’s room for everything. That being said, I think live instrumentation will almost always find a way into my music in some shape or form.”
While alt-rap, a genre TK The Architect may easily be associated with, defined a moment in the 90s with Tribe Called Quest and Busta Rhymes, TK does think hip-hop is still alive and kicking.
“There’s a lot being offered now, both for fans of the more classic vibe, as well as people looking for something new. I’ve recently come to appreciate a lot more of the modern stuff that’s been coming out. I think a lack of innovation is what keeps genres from growing/evolving, so I embrace the change.”
TK enjoys all his material, but at the moment his favorite song to play live with his band, The Get Back Kids, is a tune called Whole Life. “It represents a really positive moment for me,” states TK.
TK will be debuting more new jams this summer with The Get Back Kids. “I’ll be dropping some new music throughout July before getting back out for some shows in August and September. These songs are slightly older but the band and I have been playing them live for at least a year now. I haven’t had an opportunity to record them and release them, so I’m excited to finally share them,” concludes TK.