I FORGE MY OWN: Kid Daytona, Presented By Lexus

When speaking about the future, one really doesn’t expect it to talk back, but that’s what happens when you encounter a few of Hip-Hop’s shining stars of tomorrow. Donny Goines, Gilbere Forte and Kid Daytona all possess the skills to take their talent to the top of the world, but to get there they must forge their own lane with creativity, passion and drive. Feel the force of their words, then experience the magic of their music, as these guys are ready for the road to success.

Here, Kid Daytona breaks down exactly what helps him forge his own lane.



What makes you forge your own lane? 

The first word that comes to mind is individuality. I always pride myself on being an individual. I never want to look, sound or be like anybody else. When you become an individual, and it takes some time, you get to grow and learn ourselves and in time you become that and people remember you. I don’t want to be forgotten. I definitely want to be one of those people that makes an impact in this game and comes away as one of those dudes when it’s all said and done, “Daytona was that guy.”

What drives you to greatness? 

I’m never satisfied with where I’m at; I always just want to get better. I listen to music from the past, I listen to what’s going on currently and I always try to compete. I match my rhymes up against the greatest ever. Like, Michael Jordan was the greatest player of all time, but he was still in that gym shooting a thousand jump shots a day. He was getting to the gym before anybody else and was never satisfied. Being a competitor, I don’t know if it’s the New York in me or just wanting to be better than everybody else, but the want to be great.

Artist-wise, I look at Kanye and what he made it through. I remember just hearing his name and seeing him on the come up when I was a kid and nobody believed in him. Nobody believed in his rhymes…none of that. He went off on his own and did his own album, from humble beginnings of that album being straight samples and rhymes to what he’s doing now at Coachella, flying through the sky and whole orchestras, that’s crazy. I look at Nas and Jay-Z. What Jay has been able to do on the business side, coming from that hustler dude to performing at Yankee Stadium and on covers with Warren Buffett. Nas to me is the greatest lyricist ever. I just listen to him and the way he tells stories and puts words together, that’s where I strive to be. If I’m ever placed in a sentence with Nas and Jay lyrically then I feel like I did my job at that point.

How do you overcome potholes in your plan?

I’m definitely a dude that has tunnel vision, so I don’t even see a lot of potholes. Sometimes I drive over them and I’m good, like when you drive over them and say, “Oh shit. We don’t have no flat though so we all good.” [Laughs] Next time around when you on that street you’re like, “Aww man, that’s where I caught that flat at.” It’s like when you paying attention to what you do wrong, you listening to people instead of just shaking your head. Just listening to the good advice that people give you. 

What does your team mean to you? 

My team means everything. There was one point where I tried to do everything by myself and I found myself just stressing. It’s no way that I can send out an email, write rhymes, perform rhymes, do a show, close deals all at the same time. You need a team, that’s why I started my company. We all have our certain strengths and our weaknesses, but we bring all our strengths together to strengthen each other. Everybody that’s apart of my movement brings something to the table. You can’t go nowhere without your team.

What’s the feeling like taking a song from the studio to the stage?

It’s crazy ’cause “On The Hill” is a record that I wrote while I was at a point where I was being looked over a lot of times. When I wrote that record rappers knew I was ill, but a lot of people that paid attention to music wasn’t really familiar with what I was trying to do. So at SXSW at the VIBE House that was the record I came out, too. From the opening lines I looked at people’s eyes in the crowd and they were just like, “Aww man, I’m with you. I feel where you coming from.” There’s no other feeling in the world like it, to just perform your song and your words just become that more powerful ’cause you’re on a pedestal and everybody is looking up at you.

SPONSORED BY LEXUS. As seen in the VIBE June/July Issue.