One of Christianity’s basic tenets is that no matter how far you fall from the grace of God, you’ll be forgiven if you put your faith back in God. Sylvan LaCue has had something along those lines on his mind recently. The artist formerly known as QuEST sobered up from the rapper lifestyle in Los Angeles and moved back home to Miami to meditate and find God. Part of that spiritual journey has been documenting it through raps.
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Chris Remmers: Let’s start by telling us a little bit about where you grew up. How did that influenced your career?
Sylvan LaCue: I grew up in Miami, Florida, which to me is just a melting pot. It’s just a bunch of different cultures mixed into one. You had every island culture from Hispanic, to Cuban, to Haitians, to Jamaicans, etc. It was always a lot of diversity and that really, more or less, influenced my outlook on the rest of the world, honestly. I think once I really started stepping out of Miami I was able to kind of appreciate how I was able to grow up with so many different varieties of people. Miami is a very vibrant place — very diverse. Definitely a melting pot for sure.
Photo courtesy | Alan Light
CR: What would be the top couple of things instantly though about when someone hears “Miami”?
SL: I would say the heat. Defiantly the heat. It’s just so hot — always hot. That’s the number one thing most people remember. From a cultural standpoint, the one thing that I think of when I think about Miami, I would say diversity. It’s probably the most diverse place I have ever lived in or been to, besides probably New York.
CR: Aside from New York. What’s another placed you’ve visited with similar diversity?
SL: Toronto. There was a few places honestly, but Toronto definitely had a lot of diversity when I went. I have been there twice. Both times I went it was very diverse. You had almost every culture that I could think of existing and dwelling in Toronto: Indians, Peruvians, French, African Americans, Caucasians, Europeans. Besides Toronto I would say Montreal, [Los Angeles] to an extent, depending on where you are. Definitely, besides Miami and New York, I would say Toronto.
CR: That’s is amazing. Have you ever run into any language barriers while traveling?
SL: Yeah, I would say Montreal was the hardest. There was this one time I went, I was rolling with my friend Jay and this girl came up to us speaking French. She was trying to get me to sign a survey, and she was gorgeous. As soon as I said, “Sorry, I don’t speak French.” She replied with, “Dude, come on!” It blew my mind. I was laughing so hard. I had never seen anything like that.
Photo courtesy | Lima Pix
CR: Is there an event, venue or destination that you have to hit, because it would really culminate your career?
SL: Great question! I would have to say Europe, only because I have yet to perform there. That’s something I have yet to really experience. I think the furthest I went out was to Vancouver and Montreal. A lot of my peers have been [to Europe]. It’s just one of those things where once you get there it’s like, “Yeah I made it, we’re on another continent.” My peers inspire me to work hard to get over there, because they have thrived over there. When they sell out a show or venue it makes me really want to go out there and do that. From a cultural stand point, I feel like I haven’t [received] enough love from that culture yet. My father grew up in the European culture, and that had somewhat of an influence one me to understand what people want.
CR: What have been some memorable places you’ve experienced performing at?
SL: Besides Montreal, I would have to say San Francisco and Chicago really stick out for me. I’m a sucker for diversity and for people living together and existing in harmony.
Photo courtesy | KP Tripathi
CR: Would you say that the crowd atmosphere aligned with the nightlife when you went out in all of those places?
SL: San Francisco had a great nightlife. Montreal had a more chill laid back nightlife. Chicago had hyped crowds, but the nightlife is low key. Vancouver was the one place that had a great show, but afterwords I never experienced a nightlife like Vancouver. There are just so many woman, I don’t know if the ratio was one-to-four or what, but I had never experienced anything like it. We were in a club for the after party, and we literally could not find a guy in the crowd. It got to a point where I thought something was going on. I asked one of the residents and they told me this is just how it is here. It was really an eye opening experience — bars and clubs open till seven [in the morning]. It was unreal.
Photo courtesy | Alex Costin
CR: Lastly, where is the next big trip and what for?
SL: The next big immediate trip is LA. Overall, it’s a place for me to focus on my career, and mix with the diverse talent that work out of LA. Outside of LA, New Orleans is a place I really want to visit just from a cultural stand point.
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For more on Sylvan LaCue visit his website: