They say many are born with music in their blood and many others are thrown into it unexpectedly. Hatim Hassanali, better known as Vmixx, was thrown into it unexpectedly. He grew up to normal entrepreneur parents, not musicians or artists. He was not formally trained in music theory nor did he attend music classes at school, infact, he hated them with a passion. But what he did have is an undeniable and indestructible love, passion and creative vision for music, film and art as a whole, which later grew into a career choice in his early teens. At the age of only 19, the multi-talent has created a standard and legacy for himself that puts his peers and age-mates at awe. A nominated DJ, music producer, songwriter, actor, filmmaker and label owner Vmixx Music Group
, Vmixx has not only focused on developing his craft but also growing the entertainment scene overall by mentoring, signing and personally managing upcoming talents and making an impact on lives through music, film and art.
"My mother always said: Remember who you are. Work harder than everyone else. And don't screw up."
"If you are not actively trying to improve your craft, then expect your proclaimed love for the art of music to be in question. #ArtFirst"
Entry into the music industry - The Early Years:
Vmixx proudly hails from Mombasa, a beautiful island city on the Kenyan shoreline but currently resides in the beautiful Canadian city of Toronto. His musical awareness and background comes from his early years where he was first introduced to hip-hop, r&b and reggae by many of his school friends, at the tender age of 8, his dance music awakening came and inspiration struck hard from listening to producers like Basshunter, Tiesto and Armin van Buuren. Beginning with a laptop and demo version of Virtual DJ, Hatim set out to learn the basics of mixing music and picking out the right tracks for the right crowd. Although, It all changed when he received his first Casio keyboard on his 9th birthday, and later a classical piano and a drum kit, which helped him discover his talents and love for music. Catching his first production break with a release titled ‘Extraction’ his early production and DJ career began roughly, receiving constant criticism from family, friends and the general public. Yet, Hatim remained strong, focused and extremely motivated to make it in the industry. This was just the beginning of a long musical and artistic journey for the young producer.
"Every time I make a really great song, not just good enough, but great, it feels like some higher power is blessing me. I love the feeling"
After taking a couple years off, improving as a musician, rebranding and returning to the entertainment business officially as Vmixx. At the age of 16, Vmixx announced his very own debut artist EP/Compilation to be released on his independent label Vmixx Music
. On September 30th 2011, ‘Futuredive’ the 26-track compilation of old Vmixx classics and unreleased demo’s was released and made publicly available for free download and streaming worldwide. The compilation featured a variety of genres with collaborations from Kenyan Dancehall/Reggae artist Arkish, Canadian Vocalists Blitz Kawaja and Soraya Martins, Canadian Ambient and Psychedelic Trance Producer Malus Caelestis, Russian producer Ambush Generale and Indian rapper Mas.G.
"I believe as a musician and public figure it is my responsibility to positively inspire people, bring hope and change some lives through my craft, thats exactly why I make music, for YOU and me. As much as it touches you, it touches me too". Vmixx has released various charity singles and EP’s in aid of various international crisis: Paki-We-Stand - Single (In aid of the Pakistani flood victims), JAPAN - EP (In aid of the Japanese earthquake victims) and most recently teamed up with Kenyan vocalist Arkish, to bring hope to those suffering through one of the worst famines in the Horn-Of-Africa since the 1980’s. Vmixx is currently working with various Kenyan and International organizations to build sustainable water, education and sanitation programs in Kenya as well as a single and advocacy campaign to raise awareness on the humanitarian situation in The Democratic Republic of Congo, which has taken the lives of over 6 million people.
“ONE Good Action is Greater than a Million Good Intentions. We Judge Ourselves by Our Intentions, But Others Judge us By Our Actions!”
Vmixx Music Group Record Label
While Vmixx began to grow as an artist, Vmixx Music slowly came into place. With goals of signing new talent and innovative musicians from around the world, having a global community of like-minded artists and creative individuals, Vmixx Music the label was formed. In January 2012 Vmixx Music launched a new management division. KECA Artist Management focused on artist development, artist mentoring, talent and event management as well as creative direction and consulting to better serve artists and help grow their brand internationally. Although, In late 2012 a full rebranding and merger process was initiated and in January 2013, The Vmixx Music Group was formed. A group of 6 companies dedicated to publishing, distribution, audio and film production, entertainment industry consultation, talent and event development and management.
"80/20 rule. 80% of your competition are lazy fucks. The other 20% are the hard working success stories that want to destroy you. #ArtFirst"
Hatim is also the CEO of Mara1Moja
Productions and Hatari Films. He has produced, written, directed, shot and edited various films, documentaries and music videos internationally. His latest projects titled The Kazi Na Bidii Project & Kibera: Rising Above The Conditions are documentary film projects shot in Africa. Learn more about them via www.kaznabidiiproject.com & www.vimeo.com/iamhatim/kibera.
""That's not the way it's done buddy" - something I'm told and disregard everyday. Fuck the status quo."
Vmixx is a film student at the Toronto Film School, spending most of his time balancing between his education, music and film career, is currently working on his first documentary film project and debut artist album which is scheduled to be completed by early 2014. Vmixx, Already at the young age of 19 has achieved what no East African teenage electronic music producer has achieved, placing himself in the spotlight locally and internationally. Yet this is just the beginning of Vmixx's long journey as an artist and entertainer.
“Being an artist isn't a career, it's a calling. When you see it like that, your expectations of success not only change but so does the kind of art you create.”
“The world is made up of two gangs of people those that care about quality and those that care about quantity. Which are you?”