HUDSON RAPPER GOES WITH THE FLOW
Posted: Saturday, October 8, 2016 12:30 am
By Kate Seckinger Columbia-Greene Media
HUDSON — Sean Delaney has been writing music since he was 10, and he hasn’t given up his dream yet.
Born and raised in Hudson, Delaney has had the gift of hearing the rhythms and poetry of hip hop since he walked the streets of this small city as a boy.
"Hudson was huge into the hip hop game in the early 90s," Delaney said. "That’s how I fell in love with it."
His love for the genre started at home, listening to hip hop greats of the time like the Notorious B.I.G and Tupac Shakur.
"My brother had that [Biggie Smalls’] album," Delaney recalled. "I took it and I was immediately hooked."
From there, Delaney began writing his own raps — jotting down rhymes about dozens of topics anywhere pen ink would show up.
"The lyrics have always been the most important part of the song to me," Delaney said. "You can come up with a hit single that has a catchy tune that gets stuck in someone’s head, but for me it’s about substance and being original."
From a preteen until now at the age of 36, Delaney has worked on developing his skill from a middle school talent show to learning tricks from professionals in the city in the early 2000s.
Delaney, who performs under the artist name SDot, has 11 studio projects including six albums and five mixtapes. The local artist has composed over 500 songs about a variety of topics including the military, cancer, autism and more.
Each of Delaney’s albums are available for purchase on iTunes and his mixtapes can be heard on his website at www.hudcityentertainment.com and on Spotify.
"I write about everything the world can relate to," Delaney said. "I can write a song about any topic and I can write it really fast. I just have a knack for it. I feel like it’s always run through my blood."
Artists that inspire Delaney are diverse, he said, from The Beatles to Eminem to Pink Floyd.
The artist has performed all over New York City, including shows in Manhattan and Brooklyn, and has appeared on News Channel 13 and the Today Show.
Delaney has also performed locally dozens of times in Hudson at Club Helsinki, Basilica Hudson and many more in his hometown. SDot has also performed in Catskill, Albany and all over the Capital Region.
He’s traveled hundreds of miles to share his music, but his heart has always stayed close to home.
"I’ve always had Hudson right on my back … I’ve represented this city the best I can," he said.
Delaney was featured in CVH 1st Class Magazine, an international humanitarian publication, this past August and said he hopes his work will only continue to take off.
In 2014, Delaney auditioned for the ninth season of "America’s Got Talent" and received a pass to put him at the front of the line. He auditioned in front of over 1,000 people, he said, but never got a callback.
Hip hop has evolved since the 1990s into a new generation of form, sound and meaning, but Delaney said he refuses to change into something he’s not for the industry.
"Being from this small town, it’s so hard. I moved to the city, but I want to figure out a way to do things on my terms and stay Sean Delaney. I’m about being original. … My music will stay the same. No one can mold or shape me into anything but me."
In 2008, Delaney started his own independent music label called Hudcity Entertainment together with Vice President Tim Coons and Director of Marketing Matt Nabozny. International producer Anno Domini sponsors the label and Delaney’s fiancee, Krista Svingala, serves as his financial analyst.
Delaney said he produces his music and does everything for his business out of his Hudson home where he lives with Svingala, stepdaughters Julianna, 10, and Emilie, 8, their daughter Katelyn, 17 months, and his son Sean Jr., 6.
"We definitely have our hands full with everything going on, but family still always comes first," Delaney said. "Without my mom and dad’s support, too, I don’t know what I’d do. Family support is the crutch to keep me going."
In 2008, Delaney also developed his clothing line Sincerely Dedicated Co. using the initials of his name and a logo using a flipped treble clef that resembled a scripted SD.
"I was so dedicated passionate with what I believe in … that’s what’s behind the name ‘Sincerely Dedicated," Delaney explained. "‘It’s a blended passion of music and fashion’...That’s the slogan we came up with."
Sincerely Dedicated sells unique, customized hoodies, bracelets, graphic and female tees, hats, sunglasses and polos that have been made for celebrities including former New York Yankees rightfielder Reggie Jackson, David Ruffin Jr. and MTV reality star and rapper Prosper.
The company is sponsoring the 2019 seniors for the Hudson Bluehawks basketball team and donates $3 of everything sold each year to the Fender Music Foundation, which helps children across the country get instruments in school.
Sincerely Dedicated helped raise money for breast cancer at the Day of Hope on Oct. 1 at the Chatham Price Chopper and is working with Livingston Hills to raise more for the disease this month.
"We started out very small, but we’ve built everything into something," Delaney said. "I’m not able to quit my job and do this and perform full-time yet, but that’s the dream."
In addition to his business and performing, Delaney has worked as a direct support professional for special needs working with the disabled at organizations like Coarc in Columbia County and Berkshire Farm for the past 15 years.
His work with the developmentally disabled led Delaney to write "Open Your Eyes," a song about autism that won major awards including the state Excellence Award for the lyrics.
The music video for "Open Your Eyes," directed by Gary Malick, has reached over 310,000 views on YouTube since its release in 2007.
Delaney has continued to use his music in all parts of life. He led music for troubled youth at Berkshire Farm, is currently writing the new song for Coarc and is writing the song for Grades Count, a program founded by Dominic Cioffi that gives incentives for kids to strive for good grades.
Delaney said at the age of 36, he might be older than most rappers trying to make it, but he refuses to stop chasing his dream.
"Let’s face it, I’m not 18 anymore... Everybody and their mother is trying to be a rapper," Delaney said with a laugh. "Trying to be an artist is one of the hardest things to do in the world. At the end of the day, I refuse to give up. It can happen. … I feel like God put me on this earth to make music and I’m going to do what I do until I can’t do it anymore."
For more information about Sean Delaney’s music and Sincerely Dedicated Co., visit www.hudcityentertainment.com and www.sincerelydedicated.com. Also, look up Sincerely Dedicated on Facebook or follow him on Twitter and Instagram @sdclothingco.