CULTURE, according to Google, is "the arts and other manifestations of human intellectual achievement regarded collectively." In more concise terms, culture is a way of life. We are molded by what's around us, whether that be the people, the music, or the environment. For Bridgeport, Connecticut rapper/producer/graphic designer Muney Longway, being fully immersed in a culture is nothing new. Born and raised in Bridgeport, the city he still calls home, Longway says that growing up there was "...probably like growing up in any other city. Some parts is grittier than others but at the end of the day, it's home." With a city comes its citizens, which in turn produces culture. "A lot of culture come from the city, though. There's a lot of revival going on with the art and music in the area. A lot of gallery shows and music showcases." There's no hiding it: Bridgeport's culture has had a resounding impact on Longway, and it's evident in his body of work.
THERE are many different aspects of a culture that fully encompass it, and for Longway, there's a cultural hub that has not only defined him as an artist, but as a person. "If there's anything I can say bout culture, "the scene", or anything of the sorts, it's that if it was poppin', it went through Rampage." Rampage Skate Shop, a, well, skate shop in Bridgeport, has been identified by Longway as the place to be for culture in the city. Bridgeport once "...had a flourishing skate scene...", but it dwindled with the removal of skate spots. Rampage isn't just all about skating, however, as "...many art shows and events took place at that spot, and hella rappers performed there, too. Retchy P, 21 Savage, (Playboi) Carti, Lil Pump, (Lil) Durk." Spots like Rampage are vital for culture, as they allow people to congregate and share their interests and truly express who they are. As Longway says, "If it wasn't for that skate shop I wouldn't be the person I am today."
WHO Longway has become has undoubtedly influenced his work. Art has played a longstanding role in Longway's life, as he was "...always into drawing but I lost the love for that when I started making beats in eighth grade." While beats were at the forefront of Longway's artistic focus for a time, drawing would eventually work its way back in. "...when I got into high school, vaporwave was really the "it" thing on tumblr and all the cyber goth, soft ghetto, and seapunk things were what really got me into graphic design, and then from there I realized I could use it for cover art for flyers and I started making money off it... so I ran with both." Many people seemingly tend to hone in on one craft, but Longway doesn't shy away from multitasking. On top of producing and designing, Looney also raps, completing a trifecta of inventive skills. "People get surprised when they hear I try to maintain all three crafts, but I was always told if you want the job done right, do it yourself, and they go hand in hand."
LONGWAY'S talents have certainly not gone unnoticed, as he's a member of FOREVERWORLD, a group of artists with a wide range of talents. (I've covered a couple other members in past blogs.) Longway produced one of the first three songs released by BIGBABBYGUCCI, who happens to be the creator of FOREVERWORLD. When Longway saw that GUCCI created the group, he "...never asked to be in it cause I ain't think I was ready, to be honest, like, I just wasn't on top of music shit at the time. Like I had just started taking making music serious after a hiatus cause of school but I ended up asking to join and this was like two years ago and I been rockin' with the gang ever since."
COLLABORATION has played a big role in Longway's journey, as he's had the opportunity to work with a number of extremely talented aritsts. "My favorite producers to work for gotta be Unathletic, Trademark, and my boy Preston Laurent." There's one artist, however, that Longway has separated from the crowd. "But my brother $ammy my all-time favorite rapper to work with. I'm his producer, you should definitely check out our catalog, we got like fifteen-plus released songs on SoundCloud. I know anytime we link up 'n record a song it's gonna be a banger... He gon' be real famous one day. Probably bigger than me." Longway brings high praise for those he's worked with, notably $ammy, and it shows his dedication to his craft, as he works with people that can provide mutual benefits.
LONGWAY is a well-versed artist who is clearly highly motivated to be the best he can be, which is all the more impressive considering he's working on refining three skills. As he grows as a person and artist, and FOREVERWORLD grows as a group, we definitely haven't seen what could possibly come from Muney Longway.
You can find Muney's graphic art in the Burbs Gallery.
You can follow Muney Longway on his Social Media below.
Twitter : @MUNEYLONGWAY
Instagram : @muneylongway
SoundCloud : Muney Longway