A Spotlight on Prevail
Co-founder of the rap group Swollen Members, Ambassador for Music Heals, a newly coined “curator” of Prevailprevail.com, Prevail is about to take the stage as a speaker for TedxVancouver to a sold-out Rogers Arena. On a rain-soaked Thursday afternoon I chat to Prevail as he and his nephew pull in to Castelgar, BC, for the first stop on the Alpha Omega Canadian tour. To start things off we discuss a famous quote from Ann Landers of all people:
“At age 20, we worry about what others think of us. At 40, we don’t care what they think of us. At 60, we discover they haven’t been thinking of us at all.”
Prevail admits that at 20 he may have been focused on the “fanfare and revelry”, and instantly his notorious diction is apparent. The thing is, Prevail has long been known as someone who is extremely articulate, avoiding the more explicit of lyrics in order to better express himself with his vocabulary and with 26 years of rapping under his belt he says he finds himself more “introspective” at 40. Prevail is “more focused on the person now” and the philanthropic work ,, with Music Heals among others, of the last few years is part of that. He also feels that he can “better understand the music industry now and [his] place in it”. He is genuinely excited about the new album "The Concept", as one half of Alpha Omega with his nephew, appropriately named Neph, and you can readily tell he is keen to get out and perform this music across Canada. “I still have a few years left” he states, clearly someone very confident in his craft. This naturally leads us to where he might be headed after the music, though the transition has already begun.
A longtime Vancouver resident, Prevail is someone who not only has his finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the city, but also can speak of Vancouver’s place in the overall world of music. He mentions some of the big names in music stemming from Vancouver like Nickelback, Hedley, Carly Rae Jepsen, whilst noting that Vancouver also attracts people from elsewhere in Canada to enjoy all that this city has to offer, such as K-Os who calls the trendy Gastown home. There are a lot of amazing things happening in Vancouver and the idea of "not knowing everything that’s happening all the time in this city, is part of it's charm." For instance, if you didn’t know that Prevail was hosting the Music Heals event 'Strike a Chord', which netted over $100,000 for the charity, or that he partnered up with Canadian rap legend Maestro Fresh-Wes for a cover of Eric B. & Rakim’s “Paid in Full”, then you obviously haven’t been hitting up his online magazine Prevailprevail.com where he gives the site's followers a heads up on things.
Launched four years ago on his birthday, the website allows Prevail, and the team he works with, to showcase some of the great finds that there are in this city. He is a life and times curator for the city of Vancouver and that’s the best way to sum up the charm of the site. Prevail is someone who knows great cooks, nooks, bartenders, architecture, events, and even jewelry stores. So on that note, we challenged him to give us “Prevail’s Picks” for Vancouver:
Best place to get a cocktail: Pourhouse (he specifically recommends the Boulevardier)
Best place to hear live music: Guilt & Co. in Gastown.
Best place to impress on a date: The Orpheum (“So much musical history there" he says)
Best place to get a tattoo: Sacred Heart (with owner Dave Green)
*Never Radio would have to concur with this as 100% of our tattoos are from there*
Best place to grab a casual bite to eat? Regal Beagle, in Kitsilano.
Best place to do some fine dining? Bishop’s on 4th Avenue, as well as the classic Joe Forte’s for steak and seafood.
It is now a mission of ours to check these places out over the next few weeks and we strongly recommend Vancouverites follow suit as Prevail really does know this city well, and that knowledge is the basis for his future transition beyond the music. In addition to that however, check out his Ted Talk from Vancouver where he is super excited to be presenting and we will be ready to hear more of what this guy has to say.