Rising up in Tucson, AZ, Claye rapidly took to sports activities at a younger age. He and his associates would play the whole lot from hockey to soccer through the week, solidifying what would finally change into his first profession path. Music entered his life when he performed drums and sang in his church’s choir, however at the same time as he started to embrace rap as he received older, it stayed in his periphery for years. However it’s a brand new day for Will Claye who believes that you are able to do something you place your thoughts to, as long as the final word objective is to raise.
From day one you are placing a rustic in your chest—one of the best nation in relation to sports activities—on the largest sporting occasion of all time and also you come again to see those that seem like you get mistreated in that nation. That’s a tricky area to be in.
Together with his thoughts and physique already set on bodily coaching, it will take a life-changing occasion to persuade Claye that music was additionally his calling. An opportunity encounter within the studio with YG—who was impressed along with his work—would push him to pursue music as greater than a pastime. Over the course of the following decade, Claye would drop a handful of initiatives whereas taking residence 9 medals, together with two Gold for the triple bounce from the World Indoor Championships in 2012 and 2018, respectively. “Self-discipline and repetition is large in each,” Claye explains. “The extra that you simply do it and the extra reps you’ll be able to put in, the higher you’re gonna get at it.”
All through the movie “Elevate,” Will Claye proves he’s adaptable to just about any factor. The movie follows Claye throughout a morning of coaching on the sphere, throughout downtime along with his household, having severe conversations about Olympic illustration along with his spouse, and recording within the music studio with Khalil and his musicians. Claye’s perseverance and thirst for reality manifests in each scene of the movie, portray him as a beacon of hope for a brand new era. Irrespective of the way you classify him, Will Claye is right here for the lengthy haul.
Speak to me about once you first fell in love with music.
I performed drums at church and sang within the church choir from the time I used to be eight years previous, in order that’s what put me into music. I at all times had a love for the sound of music when my dad and mom would play it at residence, however so far as me truly making music, that occurred across the time I used to be 12 or 13. That’s once I began rapping, which simply got here from bonding with associates. We’d simply get somewhat mic and we’d have somewhat increase field and a few instrumentals and we’d simply file for enjoyable. It was simply one thing I used to be at all times good at, however I by no means considered it as a method for a profession on the time. Sports activities was at all times my profession.
When was the primary time you knew music would change into greater than only a pastime for you?
Once I received within the studio with YG. Considered one of my finest associates is a producer and I used to be making music with him all through highschool, however we weren’t dropping it. He’d at all times say we should always drop it and I’d at all times be like “I’m cool.” Then, I ended up on the studio with him and YG and we created the music “IDGAF” after which from there, I felt like I might do that. YG was even like “Bro, you been within the studio rather a lot?” And I used to be like “Nah, that is my first time in an actual studio. We was simply in closets and wherever earlier than.” Bro was like “Yea, you positively received it. That was fuel.”
Do you see any similarities between making music and pushing your physique to the restrict as an athlete?
Self-discipline and repetition is large in each. The extra that you simply do it and the extra reps you’ll be able to put in, the higher you’re gonna get at it. With coaching, on day one you begin from floor zero. You begin at nothing; you’re off form and you’ll’t actually compete at that time. You’re employed in direction of having the ability to compete over weeks and months till you get up to now the place you’re able to step on that stage. In music, you come into the studio with simply an concept and then you definitely flip that right into a beat and lyrics and post-production earlier than it’s time to place it out. I believe these are comparable issues by way of the creation course of.
Your relationship with Coach Fisher, as displayed in “Elevate,” appears to floor you. Has Fisher been as encouraging to you on the music entrance?
We speak about music rather a lot. He’s at all times attempting to get me to place him on a music and I’m like “Ain’t no person wanna hear you, dude.” He’s supportive of what I do as a result of it’s not trash. He is aware of that’s an outlet for me and one thing that I do to get away. You may’t do an excessive amount of of something, so I attempt to break up that monotony with music. That helps me on the monitor as a result of once I come again, I’m clear-minded and able to tackle the day. He is aware of me effectively sufficient to know that I’m not gonna do something to place my monitor profession in jeopardy. When it comes all the way down to it, he is aware of I’ll be again at observe tomorrow.
The scene the place you ask your spouse about representing the US within the Olympics whereas feeling underrepresented was highly effective. Being an Olympic athlete your self, I really feel like I ought to ask you an identical query: have you ever grappled together with your place as a Black man representing the USA on the Olympics?
From day one you are placing a rustic in your chest—one of the best nation in relation to sports activities—on the largest sporting occasion of all time and also you come again to see those that seem like you get mistreated in that nation. That’s a tricky area to be in. It’s robust as a result of I’ve handled racism in many various international locations. It’s a worldwide factor. That’s the robust half; it’s in all places. I’ve been kicked out of AirB&B’s due to how I look and have had weapons pulled out on me by police within the U.S. It’s robust.
You’re additionally turning into a budding activist. How do you intend on utilizing your platform as each a musician and athlete to talk to Black and brown youth?
I’d like the identical assist proven to me as an Olympian to be proven to the individuals of our nation, interval. It must be love. The very first thing is to encourage younger Black and brown girls and boys. As soon as you already know you’ll be able to attain the best of heights, there’s nothing that may maintain you again. Secondly, representing them and talking for them on the largest platform attainable is one thing I really feel I must do. If not, then who’s gonna converse for them? These persons are nonexistent to the world. What’s happening there must be spoken about. Doing that may give individuals consciousness and provides them what they should go assist.