From Temple to Austin, Texan hip hop artist Dedrick is back with his emotionally-rich single “Distant”. After finding his perfect balance between melodic and lyrical, Dedrick took a 4-year hiatus all to finely-tune his otherworldly approach to hip hop and lo-fi. After returning in 2019, Dedrick has since been a force to be reckoned with. Through his latest release “Distant”, we’re hit with Dedrick’s clear bars and melodic vocals bringing a well-rounded feel to modern-day hip hop. Swiftly shifting back and forth between a louder/hard-hitting delivery, to his haunting vocal arrangements on the hook, Dedrick has provided us with a layered and dynamic track.
Opening with spacey underlying production with layered ghost vocals and eerie effects, Dedrick’s low and clear voice establishes “Distant”'s tone right from the jump. Shifting into the first verse, Dedrick’s ability to transition from dark melodies to gripping flow astounds us, as he graces his audience with conceptual bars like; “You say we need to talk more, but the phone works both ways”. Moving back into softer and more serene delivery through the ear-pleasing chorus, he channels different emotions of sadness, anger, and frustrations which are effortlessly translated through his vocals. “Distant” effectively showcases Dedrick’s thorough songwriting and dynamic vocal range. Make sure to give “Distant” a stream, as it’s very well worth the listen.
Listen to "Distant" here.
Hey Dedrick, welcome to BuzzMusic! We’re loving the passionate and emotional imagery you’ve set out on your single “Distant”. What made you want to write a heartfelt hip hop track, and channel those deep emotions that are perfectly translated on your track “Distant”? Thanks for having me again. It’s very much appreciated I’m glad you’re all a fan of the intensity of the song. I was initially sitting on the beat for about a month or so until I played around with the idea of making a relationship song. The song I had in mind originally was going to be a story of some sort but I couldn’t find anything fitting. So from there, I decided to make a hopeless romantic anthem filled with quotables fit for IG captions like “Will we step up? and since I’m the man help me help us”. Once I had the concept in mind writing it became easy from there. Pulling from past experiences from previous relationships and heartaches my friends had been through made this a breeze. Then I just had to make a major theme that tied it all together. On the surface, it’s about distance making a long-distance relationship distant from not being together physically to contrasting schedules. Which is draining and taxing on a couple that sees each other every so often. The same can be said for relationships where the couple is around each other so much yet the communication is nonexistent and there’s constant friction between the two. I’ve, unfortunately, been in both types before with the same person. If I went through it I’m sure someone else has and can relate to the feelings and emotions of going through a relationship like that.
Your latest single “Distant” effectively showcases your ability to move from strong and dominant rap to soothing and comforting vocals. What was your process like when creating “Distant”, and how did you find melodies/lyrics that are different yet complement each other?
Well, it’s almost the same approach to any song that I make in the sense that I want to push the boundaries of what I can and can’t do. Every song I write I try to outdo myself and make something different so this was my attempt at making music that I haven’t made before. In terms of rapping one second, crooning the next, then shouting 3 seconds later I found it to be unique coming from me which made the record fun to make and experiment with.
We’ve heard that in 2015, you took a 4 year-long hiatus from music. What made Dedrick want to come back to the rap game, and how did your sound change at all during this shift?
To be honest during the time off I’ve always been making music in terms of writing and freestyling. To me, it wasn’t a break because I never stopped making music but to the day one fan who followed me back when I put out Renegade and One Letter Two Words on SoundCloud there was definitely a gap between me releasing music and a shift in my sound when I came back. Throughout that 215 and 2019, I came up with songs like Petty Wap and Never Let Me Down. There are plenty of others that I recorded but decided to keep to myself. In all honesty, I would have released the music if I hadn’t grown tired of it by the time I started releasing music again. In some ways, I had found my own style and direction I wanted to go branding wise. And in others, I doubled down and improved on my technicality and emoting ability. I’ve always listened to my music with outsider's ears that way I can critique myself without any bias so to go from heavily sounding like Eminem to sounding like Dedrick on a song was heavily refreshing.
Speaking on your recent single “Distant”, the track incorporates dynamic production that emphasizes each turn your vocals take from verse to chorus. How did Dedrick want to shape the underlying production to support/emphasize your lyrics?
It started with me playing with the pre-chorus melody by rhyming on the twinkles. “Lately you been the first thing I think of the morning and....”
From there, I knew the hook had to be bouncy to become infectious and make it stick to you long after listening so a spent about an hour or so coming up with different melodies until I came up with the one we have. Now the production was one of my favorite parts about this song. I had my engineer sauce up the beat and tailor-made it to my vocals and inflections using the stems from the beat file. If there was a line that I wanted more emphasis on I’d direct him to make a change and minimize a certain sound. That’s pretty much the making of distant.