I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Chris Greenwood. Or as most people know him, Manafest. In April 2012 his latest offering, Fighter, will be debuted for the world to hear. You can check out the album’s title track and first single here. Check out what Manafest had say below.
So, you got your start in rap after a skateboarding accident. God works in mysterious ways. Do you ever thank Him for allowing that to happen?
I believe life is made up of choices, not chances, and thank God for all the blessings and good people he’s put around me.
Manafest was discovered by TFK front man, Trevor McNevan, who has a pretty powerful name in Christian Alternative. Were you guys friends before he noticed your skills as a rapper and entertainer?
My wife and I used to go to there concerts back in the day to hang out after opening up for their Set It Off release party in Hamilton, Ontario. I was a fan of their music and then we became friends as we hung out at the shows.
Your last record, The Chase, whether people know it or not featured the vocalist of Japan’s Cross Faith, Kenta Koie. Not a very popular name here in the states. How did this partnership come to be?
My A & R at EMI Japan saw them play a show in Tokyo and thought they were awesome. He was waiting for the right time/track to do a feature with them and when I sent him the original version of “No Plan B” he thought it was perfect. Koie is super talented and they’re beginning to blow up in the Rock scene in Japan as well as touring the UK and soon-to-be the US.
April 10th, 2012 will see the release of your fifth studio album. What can fans expect from Fighter?
This is my strongest record to date lyrically, musically and also theme wise. There is a lot of aggression and emotion on this album plus some big hooks to sing along to. Which will be great for shows.
Coming back to your relationship with Trevor McNevan. Over the course of your four studio albums already released. He’s made a total of seven guest appearances throughout your discography. Will your new album, Fighter, continue in this Manafest tradition?
We collaborated on one song for this record “Heart Attack” where he contributed to helping write the chorus but no features this time. I’m sure we will do more collabs in the future, we’re a solid team.
What are plans for touring on Fighter?
I’m in Japan right now for 7 shows, then go to China, Canada for a week tour and then back to the US to start some festivals. Busy year, but trying to keep it balanced too.. :)
Each album has a different feel to it. Epiphany, your debut album, has a bit of a rap core feel to it, drawing inspiration from P.O.D. and Linkin Park. Glory, your follow up, is more of a pure hip hop style. Citizens Activ got a lot addition. What style or feel is Fighter going to have to it when it is released?
Fighter is an extension of The Chase. Continuing in the Rock direction with some rapping on it, but a lot more singing.
Every great rapper has a stage name. How did you come up with Manafest?
In the kitchen on the phone with a friend, because we thought it sounded good. Also, I wanted to change the “I” to an “A” so it would stand out.
You’re a very outspoken man when it comes to your faith. Do you ever get fans come up to you after shows and tell you that your music or testimony has made a difference in their life?
All the time, it’s the foundation of everything I am, and my music is an extension of that.
So you and TFK seem to be close. Yet, you’ve never made a guest appearance on any of their discography. When are you guys going to make this happen?
That’s a good question…
You’re a Canadian native. Which audience, Canadian or American, has shown you more love?
America! Home town haters.. :)