At 5’4” with dreadlocks, glasses and a desired degree in geology, Kalik Clark proved predetermined opinions aren’t always suitable.
Clark intends to study rocks and climate change, but shares the same passion for writing and performing music.
“I’ve been rapping for 17 years,” geology senior Clark said. “I’m not shy about it.”
Last weekend, Clark was the only UTA senior in a three-set gig at the Curtain Club in Deep Ellum, Dallas. The show comprised local and sponsored acts, with Clark leading his own set.
Clark said people often poke fun at his height, but he enjoys the element of surprise when stepping on stage.
“The initial reception was just shock and awe,” Clark said. “I think that’s one of my favorite parts of doing music.”
Before the music dropped, Clark said he was more nervous about the crowd’s reception than performing.
“I’m 5’4” but I’m doing big things,” is a line encompassing Clark’s stature in the song “Hezo Mellow Yellow,” which he cowrote.
“He has a big personality,” said Jakoby Barlow, a former co-worker and friend of Clark’s who performed with him during the show. “He’s always smiling, rapping, singing.”
Clark performed a self-written song with a few co-workers at the event, which was cut short because of complications with time slots. He was also able to perform one of three solo songs.
“This is actually my first time seeing Kalik perform,” alumna and friend Patricia O’Brien said. “It was awesome.”
Clark said it’s essential to support artists at their shows and buy their music.
“The goal of this is to build a fan base,” Clark said.
He said he plans to develop a following by submitting his rap music to local radio stations and music contests.
“Music is always going to be something I carry in my back pocket,” Clark said. “Most geologists are also artists.”
Clark said he hopes to obtain a successful career in both fields, and finds juggling both is relatively easy.
“A big part of music for me is looking at what’s around me and, you know, talking about it,” Clark said. “It all really comes from observation, and science is the same way.”
Music’s most important element is to find a way to convey a message of self-expression in a well-received manner, Clark said.
“I know he’s going to be great,” Barlow said. “He has the personality and the drive to be great.”
Clark said he has another show scheduled in mid-August and his peers can expect more music from him in the upcoming year.