Excuse My Accent: An Interview with Drei Ros and RobYoung


Andre “Drei Ros” Rosca and Robert “RobYoung” Walker have been friends for a decade, but it was one conversation that changed their purpose in life.

Each of them have extraordinary musical backgrounds, and once they met each other through a mutual friend, they knew that their foundations and love for music would bring forward a special partnership.

The phone call that changed everything was about the blatant racism that Rosca experienced as a Romanian artist in America.

“I was telling [Walker] that even though my music is being appreciated, people still criticize me for my accent,” Rosca said.

Walker suggested creating a song that speaks on acceptance. When the phone call ended, they both remember taking a moment to contemplate the idea. They recognized a concept that in itself was more than enough to start a chain reaction. They thought of how many people were in similar predicaments and wishing they didn’t feel disconnected just because of their language or speech.

“I always feel like the best music comes out of vulnerability,” Walker said. “People connect to vulnerability. They realize that a lot of people go through that same struggle so I told [Rosca] he should just speak to it rather than use that insecurity as a weapon. That's what makes you unique.”

The song “Excuse My Accent” brings that vulnerability to life with strong lyrics and an equally strong music video. Created with Walker and Dominican Republic artist Sharlene, the single serves as a hard driving rally cry for human rights and shines a spotlight on the immigrant experience in America.

Award-winning Romanian director Richard Stan brought the song to life with a video that tells the story of so much chaos through the eyes of a young girl, playing off the line “You ever wonder what it’s like to put yourself in the shoes of a child”. She watches families get separated, women being trafficked and people of all gender and race fight for basic human rights.

An Easter egg in the video is military veteran Hector Barajas, who shared his story with Vice last year about serving in the American military before being deported to Mexico. Kevin Martinez, who also served in the military before being deported, stands on the other side of Barajas. They are small stories in the bigger picture, but their stories are loud.

“We wanted to show that we're all the same, we're all going through different things that have similar consequences on all of us and to just bring people together and inspire people to be there for each other and help each other because I believe that only together we can go through these hard times and really offer a good life for the next generation to come,” Rosca said.

“Excuse My Accent” is more than just a song and a music video - it’s the beginning of what they plan to accomplish as a collective. People of all walks of life have already touched this project and made an impact on it, and it’s barely begun. Their goal is to take this wide array of cultures and ethnicities and create a platform that highlights the multicultural experience in and out of America.

“We definitely believe that the conversation that we're having is a worldwide conversation of unity,” Walker said. “We plan on continuing to do this project so this song isn't just one song or just a video or just a moment. It's a movement. It's not a moment, it's a movement.”