Meet Fejo, the rapper who thrills with Malayalam raps

Febin Joseph aka Fejo says Malayalam is not a flexible language when it come to rap.

Rapper Fejo, with his incredible talent in arranging words in perfect rhyme and rhythm, never fails to amaze. His Malayalam raps have been popular in the YouTube since 2009. Besides, Fejo enjoys millions of followers and viewers in the social media as well. The rapper has now made his way into the movies and has rapped for Tovino-starrer 'Maradona'. 'Athiran', starring Fahadh Faasil, is the latest movie in which Fejo’s music has been featured. Though he wishes to tune songs for the movies, Fejo aims to create a unique musical trend in Malayalam.

Music and movies

Febin Joseph aka Fejo never had any intention to study engineering. However, like many others, he too enrolled himself for a BTech course. Though he realized, in the first semester itself that engineering was not his cup of tea, Fejo managed to complete the course, that too, without having a single supplementary. Music and movies were always Febin Joseph’s dreams besides a bit of reading and writing. After completing the course, he joined the KSEB as a young trainee. However, he quit the job within a few months. He has also worked in a few construction companies which he left sooner. Finally, he decided to permanently end his search for jobs and pursue his passion for music.

He used to upload his songs on YouTube when he was a student. Initially, he uploaded the songs as lyrical videos. Many were impressed by the way in which Malayalam words were perfectly used in a rap song. However, there were critics as well who wrote scathing comments. Fejo took those negative comments as a motivation to write, sing and upload more songs. The rap song in which he presents his bio data was unique and amazing. This video became viral instantly and Fejo’s other raps too were appreciated.

It was after watching Fejo’s YouTube videos that composer Sushin Syam offered him the chance to sing in the movie 'Maradona'. The rap song ‘Aparadapanka’ from 'Maradona' became super hit and Fejo continued his winning streak in 'Ranam' as well. His song from the latest movie 'Athiran' too has grabbed attention of the music lovers. 'Underworld' starring Asif Ali and Jimboomba in which Askar Ali plays the lead role are the young musician’s upcoming projects.

Towards rap

Fejo’s favorite hobby was listening to Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi songs. It was only later that he began listening to English songs which made him realize the amazing scope of music beyond the film songs. He was greatly drawn to rap and hip hop genres. He used to play these songs aloud on a CD player and wrote parodies for the English songs. The English lyrics were replaced with Malayalam words and he performed it on front of his friends. Later, he began to write the lyrics on his own. He became confident when his friends encouraged him and recorded songs in his mobile phone.

Fejo says that Malayalam is not a flexible language when it comes to rapping. It was very difficult to arrange rhyming words meaningfully. However, his interest in reading and writing helped a lot in upping his language game and came up with interesting rap songs. He struggled a bit in the beginning as Malayalam raps did not exist for him to refer. Now, words flow to him even without jotting it down on a paper.

Meanwhile, he got a chance to rap along with popular Hindi rapper Raftar. It was Bollywood actor Varun Dhavan who acted in Fejo’s Malayalam rap video.

Thinking music

Rap is widely hailed as the genre of the downtrodden. It is used as a means to bring forth their voices and issues to the mainstream. So, Fejo always chooses socially relevant subjects while composing a rap. Though many companies have approached to sponsor him on YouTube Fejo hasn’t shown interest in it yet. He hasn’t rapped for private companies either. Besides doing amazing work in movies, Fejo wishes to strengthen the independent Malayalam music industry as well. Fejo is so stoked about his forthcoming rap album Theruvile Kalakaran. Son of Parambilottu Joseph and Lionitha Fejo hails from Vyttila, Kochi.

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