Discovery: Sincere

Staying true to his alias, Sincere mixes honest lyrics with hip-hop, reggae, and drum & bass. Sincere, known to his family as Dion Hamilton, was first enthralled by rap at the tender age of 15. Now, 12 years later, Hamilton is releasing records via Rick Rubin and Russell Simmons’-founded label, Def Jam, home of his teenhood heroes Jay-Z and UK mega-producers Chase & Status.

In addition to rap, Sincere runs his own fashion line, XYE Clothing. “I like my fashion as much as I love my music; I think it’s important to be fashion-conscious,” Sincere tells us. We recently spoke with the musician in London.

AGE: 27


MUSICAL STYLE: My sound is a mixture of old school garage, drum & bass, hip-hop, and reggae—basically everything I grew up listening to inspires what I do today. My production is distinctively UK, but the flows and vocal tracks are aimed at connecting to the listener, no matter where in the world you are. On my album, Yours Sincerely—which will be out next year—I tackle a lot of social issues, and hopefully it will connect with everyone.

BACK TO HIS MUSICAL BEGINNINGS: Well, I wrote my first verse to House Of Pain’s Jump Around. Performing my own verse to people and seeing them enjoy it is what gave me the inspiration to make music. After that, I got in my dad’s studio and started recording music. But the first real step I had on the music scene was with UK rap legend, Skinnyman. Since then, I’ve released four mixtapes and three singles, independently, and now I’m releasing DÉJÀ VU with Mercury.

HIP-HOP TODAY: I think hip-hop music is in a great place! We’ve got very diverse talent, from A$AP Rocky to Kendrick Lamar, to Gucci Mane and now the UK’s killing it, with the likes of Wretch 32, G FrSH, Tinie Tempah and soon-to-be myself. [laughs]

IN THE CLUB: The record was made by my long-time producer and musical partner, Kid Bass. We wanted to make a record to follow on from my previous single, Ain’t Nobody Like You, and DÉJÀ VU is the perfect way for us to move forward with that sound. We sampled Valley Of The Shadows, which is a classic drum & bass record, and mixed it with a production that we knew would shut down a club or a festival.

WHY LISTEN? It’s simple, because there ain’t nobody like me. [laughs]