K Rokk: Professional Drummer Out of Queens, NY

by Karl Nelson II, Intern Media

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Video work by my videographer Austin Dancy (Brooklyn, NY)

I recently took my platform Intern Media on the road, just a borough over from Brooklyn, NY to Queens, NY, to sit down with longtime musician (Drummer), K Rokk. It was humbling to sit down with a guy who has dedicated himself to his artistry for over two decades, demonstrating an even stronger love for music today compared to 21 years ago when he first started.

Our interview took me back to a year ago when I was coaching alongside one of my mentors at the Park School of Baltimore. On the first day of tryouts, my mentor expressed to our players that there was “a huge difference between doing something for the fun of it and actually loving what you do.”

My mentor brought this up to the kids because at the time we had some guys playing because they simply found fun in playing the sport. While that’s fine, that mentality can cause a problem for the guys on the team who are playing competitively out of a true love for the game.

Well, what my mentor said must have really sunk in because that had to be one of my most memorable seasons as a coach given not only our success that year, but the passion that the guys played with day in and day out.

What he said that day resonated with me and it’s a statement that has stuck with me to this day. K Rokk is a perfect example of someone who is in the music industry for the true love of it.

Don’t get me wrong. He’s all about having fun with his craft, but for something to be considered your craft, one must work at it too, right? That’s something that K Rokk understands, which is why he’s performing several times week in and week out, always looking to add a staple to his resume.

K Rokk has been doing this for years, and if anything, his work ethic has only grown since the day that he first picked up those drum sticks, introducing the world to his unique sound.

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K Rokk is able to literally wake up and do what he loves daily, and his journey has paid dividends for him as he’s been able to perform across the country, surrounding himself with what he would refer to as “seasoned” musicians, and he’s now working on a couple new projects that will reinvent him as an artist in an industry that is constantly evolving. 

K Rokk is blessed to be still having fun performing on the drums, expressing his serious love for the stage and drawing a crowd based off of his talent.

Speaking from the perspective as someone who was able to watch him perform, I’m telling you that his talent is what triggered my approaching him shortly after the show. And thank God that I did because I might not have learned of how great of a guy he is outside of his talent. Here’s a guy that has made his artistry his life and you can see how much ‘life’ the art of music gives him when he’s out there on that stage.

K Rokk stressed the importance of networking and connecting with others in your respective industry when we set down for the interview. Well, it’s those relationships that he’s developed over the years which keeps him constantly at venues performing week after week. It’s also those relationships that have enabled him to travel outside of New York to showcase his talents as a musician, impacting the lives of many.

And how ironic that it was my relationship with my good friend and artist L. Green which made this story possible.

K Rokk’s emphasis on this is what reminds us that we cannot make it out here on our own. You need people. You need that one person to say, “Look. I support what you’re doing. Keep inspiring.”

Me, KRokk, Austin
Me, K Rokk and my videographer Austin Dancy

You need that person who’s going to invest their time and even sometimes their money into your passion. I know that I haven’t made it to where I am all by myself. I’ve had a core group of supporters and quite frankly, it’s their encouraging words and God’s love that keeps me going as a journalist in New York City, one of the hardest cities to make it in.

K Rokk has had the opportunity to perform with some of those he considers gurus in the music industry — individuals he’s learned a ton from. Little does he know though that it’s his two decades of dedication to his craft and his upcoming work that has a guy like myself looking at him as a guru in the realm of music.

These stories are meant to inspire those who come into contact with them, but what should also be highlighted is the fact that it’s me who’s inspired by those that I cover stories on. They make what I do that much sweeter and worthwhile.

Take a look at the interview below (in video form) and hear directly from K Rokk as he talks about how he got to where he is today as a musician, where his love for music comes from, what projects are on the horizon for him, and more.

Also, here’s a chance for you to grow with me as I take my gifts as a writer and translate them into my aim to develop as a reporter while putting my vision on camera, making journalism just what I’ve promised it can be; a production. | ΚΜΝ

The Interview

K Rokk,

Thanks for growing with me my man and becoming apart of the Intern Media family, stamping your spot in this movement. Continue to inspire and educate, not only the up-and-coming musicians out there, but the media outlets that you cross paths with. More media professionals need to learn about these artists beyond the surface, not simply latching onto their talent, but more so showing appreciation for their journey’s. That was part of my aim for this interview and I pray that my approach as a Digital Journalist made you feel like family bro.

 

KarlHeadShot

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