Richelle “Rudy Haze” Hayes, FKA AissaSpades, the songstress, the soul, the awkward girl with the memorable presence. She got the name Rudy from her mom as a jit, but was never really proud of it until she released her first album RUDY in July of 2017. Her whole home city of Mullins, SC knew her as RUDY, why not give the world that? From just being the girl that loved music, to the band geek, the drum major, the ensemble lead, the choir director, the producer, the audio engineer, the songwriter, or the artist, music has followed her all of her life. She could no longer run from it, but it has done nothing but open continuous doors of opportunity. She’s played a role in the production of more than enough projects from artists all over and is always a voice of wisdom for her musical peers. She goes through each day on a continuous journey to mastering her craft and pushing others to chase after that gut punching dream that she believes everyone has. She’s a senior Pan African Studies major and Communications minor at Clemson University and hopes that learning about her ancestry and how to communicate effectively can help her push her people to a more prosperous and positive place through the music she creates.
“Evolution’s necessary. you can’t grow if you cant learn.” - Rudy
What are you passionate about and at what point/incident in your life did you recognize this passion is the key to your true path?
"I always felt like music was for me. I spent my youngest years singing notes behind my sister playing the piano, I learned how to move a party through playlist curating skills from my dad, and I watched my mom’s singing move a whole congregation service after service. Anything musical I was soaking up like a sponge, it always just came easy for me, but I never really had the resources or motivation to do anything with that. I had a band director in high school that got us production and studio equipment, that’s where I started to learn how to produce. He was the first person to make me feel like I could aspire to do something in music after I graduated, but once he got deployed the school took the equipment from us and it felt like music was a far fetched dream again. It wasn’t until Teiji Mack had me walking in the middle of the night on a snow covered campus to Calhoun Courts to record a song “No Peace Tea” for one of his mixtapes that I knew, “I wanna do this for the rest of my life.” I didn’t put much into action until a few years later when I released my album RUDY, but when I was working on RUDY I was a PA for Emerging Scholars, a summer college program for students on the educational corridor of shame. So many students would tell me that seeing me work on my album made them realize that they could do anything, they just had to put in the work to do it. It changed my life, I never thought that dreaming and pursuing anything in music was something realistic until that summer. I do what I do now because of that, to keep their dreams alive."
How do you use your passion to illuminate change in the world?
"I’m a songwriter, it’s a blessing and a curse because I see how lyrics can affect who’s listening. What we put in music transfers through what our listeners feel. A lot of stuff I wrote when I first got serious about this has manifested and it was scary at first but I felt like that was God getting me to see that I need to watch what I say and how I say it because people will feel what I put through the vibrations. I feel like I have a people that needs my voice. I feel like there’s a people especially from where I’m from that need a voice to say “they lied and said you couldn’t do it, but i can show you that you can and give you some free game in the process.” I feel if I can make at least one person feel and understand that a day then I’m doing my job correctly. Music is a universal language, it’s my first language, and I wanna use it to inspire the world."
If you could leave one lasting impression on others what would it be and why?
"I just want to help in any way I can, if I had the money to fund dreamchasers I would. If I could help fund music programs, or help kids and adults see that the world is more than what they want you to see it as, I would. You don’t have to go the regular route, that’s the way to regret and most people that I know live in their shoulda, woulda, coulda’s and discourage anything that could go against that grain. I know there’s more to life than what they say there is, I know your life won’t feel fulfilled until your pushing your passion, and I wanna help everyone that wasn’t given the privilege to be taught that understand it and maneuver once they understand it."