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Meet A-Rushh

Today we’d like to introduce you to A-Rushh.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Damn, I don’t even know where to begin… Well, my full name is Alexander Russell Sanchez Menez IV, but you can call me Russell or A-Rushh – with Two Hs, man… I’m a rapper, producer, actor, entrepreneur, and a child of God.

Born in Orange, California, I’ve moved over 20 times in my life, but spent most of my childhood and teenage years all around Orange County. I’m Filipino-American with some German and I now reside in Los Angeles.

Being the eldest of four children and all of my cousins, I took pride of being a leader at a very young age. Everyone in the family calls me Kuya, which means “big brother” in Tagalog (Filipino), and that’s what I’ve pretty much built my music and brand around. I distribute my music independently through my label, Big Kuya Entertainment, and I own a clothing line called, Kuyawear.

I’ve been rapping and writing since I was a little kid. It was in the 5th grade where I had my first rap performance at a school talent show imitating a scene from Austin Powers 2 with me as Doctor Evil rapping to Mini Me. Ever since then, I fell in love with performing and recognized my creativity skills at an early age.

It wasn’t until High School that I realized I wanted to make music a career. I’ve got two uncles who are actually around my age and they were recording raps when I was a Sophomore. They introduced me to the whole recording and production process and we would all start our music journey together. I remember being 16 years old not eating lunch for three months at school and saving my lunch money to cop a Pro Tools LE software and a Samson USB microphone to make my own music at home. Looking back, it always cracks me up cause I had no idea what the hell I was doing with Pro Tools at 16 and there were no YouTube tutorials to show me the basics. I pretty much taught myself how to produce, record, mix, and master by messing around and using my ear.

Basketball was actually my first love and I used to dream of being the first pinoy in the NBA or at least end up in the PBA (Philippines Basketball Association). When I hit my senior year in high school, I fractured my femur during a game which ended my hoop dreams, putting a 13-inch rod in my leg from my hip to my knee. I’m actually happy that happened, cause that made me take music very seriously.

Then I spent a couple of years in New York studying audio and the music business at the Institute of Audio Research. I loved New York and the two years I spent there will always be something I’ll cherish, but I came back to California to be around my family.

Now feeling like I was on the verge of making a name for myself in Los Angeles, I had to put my music on pause due to my youngest sister being diagnosed with cancer. My sister, Chelsea, had a heart transplant when she was just a year old, so I would actually call the hospital my second home as we were always in and out for her since I was ten. I’m just very blessed that God gave us fourteen years with her and I feel like everything I do, I do for her.

So yeah, now I’m here blessed that I’m able to still pursue music and build a brand through the resources we have today as I still do everything independently. I’m currently working on a full-length project scheduled to release this summer and I just launched a new collection with Kuyawear. AND YO, SHOUTOUT TO ALL MY KUYA FAM OUT THERE! THANK YOU FOR ALWAYS SHOWIN’ ME LOVE. TWO HS, MAN!!!

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Nope. And I believe that no road should be smooth cause then how would you be able to thankful for what you got today?

There are a lot of obstacles I face from being a minority in the industry, to being a complete DIY brand, to life and career balance, etc.

You just got to keep a positive mindset and keep envisioning your goals with the actions to back it up cause once you don’t, you’ll feel like you died in a video game and got to start back at level one.

What else should we know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
So I’ve got Big Kuya Entertainment and Kuyawear, but I’ll speak more about my music.

I pretty much run all operations and manage myself because honestly, we are at the day and age where artists should see themselves as a brand if they want to be successful in today’s entertainment world.

I’ve currently got the best fans in the world and I like to call them Fam. As I get to know them more, it’s a blessing to see that they come from all over the world of all different backgrounds and that’s what I’m most proud of – that my music is universal and resonates with many unique individuals.

I’m not yet a huge artist, but I thank God everyday for what I’ve currently got. What sets me apart from other artists I guess is just me being myself and staying true within the music I create. I like to make music that I would personally like and just not what’s poppin’ today.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success to me is happiness. I believe happiness is a choice and if we choose to do the things that make us happy, then success is inevitable. Sure, we can measure success by how much money someone makes or how many awards someone has, but if that someone isn’t truly happy, what’s the point? So, I like to define success as actually getting out of that comfort zone, doing the things you want to do, and having gratitude for the results.

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