Sixteen year old Harry Byart, known to all his fans as Fugative, has described his unique style of music as ‘hip-pop’ (a mix between hip-hop and pop). Denise Kodia caught up with the rising star for The Wrap Up to see how he intends to take the world by storm with his sound and who he has a crush on…
TWU: How did you get the name Fugative?
Fugative: It was more of a young thing. When I was younger it would have been Fugitive Kid, not that I was a criminal when I was younger or anything. But then I just took off the kid and added the ‘a’ in the middle to make it unique.
TWU: What do you prefer people to call you: Harry or Fugative?
Fugative: Harry really…
Fugative: It’s more personal. The name Fugative is what I do at work and no one really likes work.
TWU: It must be cool to be sixteen and do the things you’ve always wanted to do…
Fugative: That’s the thing; you have to make a lot of sacrifices. A lot of people think you always get to do what you want to do, but you don’t. I don’t get to see my friends a lot and when I do, we have to make sure we have a great time too.
TWU: What do you say to people calling you the UK’s version of Justin Beiber?
Fugative: Oh I hate that. I’m really not Justin Beiber. I mean he’s cool, but I write and produce all my own songs and if I go to work with a producer I’m in there with them. I don’t just go on a track and spit the 16 given to me and then I go home.
TWU: So it’s very much your own personal touch…
Fugative: I don’t understand when artists get given something and then pretend it’s theirs.
TWU: What do you think it is about you that makes you fit into the British market?
Fugative: It’s your image, the way you come across and you’ve also got to be very different, as a lot of people are doing the same thing. You have to know where you want to go and how to make it appeal to other people. You also have to remain creative.
TWU: How will you remain creative and fresh?
Fugtaive: I’ll keep coming with that new sound and keep working on me.
TWU: Who would you say has influenced your musical style?
Fugative: It’s difficult to say, because I started at such a young age. My mum managed Marvin Gaye, so I was always around the Motown sound. Growing up I used to listen to hip-hop and my sister used to listen to a lot of club music, but then when I moved to Essex there was a lot of indie. It’s a lot of everything, if I only listened to hip-hop then that’s all I would know and I would be able to come with something different. I try to listen to anything I can.
TWU: When can we expect the album to be released?
Fugative: I’m working on the album at the moment. I’ve already got 40 tracks and I’m still recording. I want it to come out around Christmas time.
TWU: If you had one last thing to say to your fans what would it be?
Fugative: Thank you so much for supporting me and all those who believed in me from the start. Please, please, please support me for the rest of your lives [laughs].
TWU: How important are the fans to you?
Fugative: They are very important. Last year I did 180 shows and that wouldn’t have happened without the fans. Every show I go to I take as many pictures as possible, I make sure I sign all the CDs, T-shirts too.
TWU: What’s the weirdest thing you’ve had to sign?
Fugative: I don’t think I should say [laughs].
TWU: Who would you snog, marry or avoid out of: Monica, Pixie Lott and Daisy Dares You?
Fugative: I don’t want any of them coming back to me and shouting. This is hard, but I would avoid Daisy Dares you, sorry Daisy. I’m too young for marriage, but I would marry Monica and snog Pixie Lott because she’s hot. Yeah she’s hot!
Fugative – ‘Crush’ is out May 10
Words: Denise Kodia
Online editing: Joseph 'JP' Patterson