Vish: On a Mission to Break Barriers

Sam P.K. Collins

Up-and-coming artist Vish is on a mission to solidify his presence in the District music scene. However, as a Gen-Z rapper of Indian descent, he often laments having to set the record straight about his identity, the authenticity of his craft, and whether he really hails from the District.

With two singles in circulation, and the strong backing of neighborhood friends and industry mavens, Vish said he will continue to focus solely on the music, all with the goal of breaking barriers and representing the city he has called home his entire life.

Music always came easy to me. I made covers back in the day and taught myself how to play the keyboard and other instruments,” said Vish.

I use my craft and all of these assets to make my music,” he continued. “I pay attention to the small details to make my songs catchy and have a small melody. I [also] make sure I shout out God. He’s the reason why everything is happening. “

Vish on a mission: to break barriers

Vish,21, emerged on the scene last November amid a pandemic that put the world on pause and forced him to fully commit to making music. His foray into music followed years of self-exploration, including an immersion into Hindu spirituality while abstaining from mind-altering substances and attempting to decipher his real friends from the naysayers.

As a student at Woodrow Wilson High School, Vish delved into his talents and developed the strength to stand in his uniqueness. He said his experiences as the youngest American-born child of Indian immigrants and his coming of age along 17th Street, what many people Uptown know as 1-7, has often influenced the topic matter in his songs.

For example, on his breakout song “Real Friends,” Vish shouts out friends as he speaks about the levels he’s reaching in his development. In “Ain’t Me,” Vish proudly represents the community that has his back while differentiating himself from its negative elements.

In the hi-def videos for both singles, Vish and his friends can be found posted up, dancing, and flashing money in their favorite spots around Adams Morgan and Wilson High School.

In navigating the complexities of his Indian heritage and his Uptown adolescence, Vish has found a key similarity between both sides being people’s support for one another, and their desire to see their fellow man and woman excel in their craft of choice.

For a young man that’s finding himself, that strong sense of community has further emboldened Vish to live authentically.

I think the biggest thing is being you [and] being 100 percent real. Being real is basically telling people how you are,” Vish told The Bridge.

I don’t really come from that good of a neighborhood or environment,” he continued. “I was hanging around a lot of people who are scared to show themselves. You can still be from the hood and a great person. You don’t have to be out in the streets doing this and doing that.”

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