Welcome to BuzzMusic Lo! How was the music scene for you growing up? In what ways has your style been impacted by your upbringing and environment?
Rapping was an art when I was a little kid. You wouldn’t be taken seriously as a top tier artist if you weren’t lyrical, relatable or unable to take your listeners on a journey through vivid storytelling. As a youth my top influences were 2Pac, DMX, Eminem, 50 Cent, Young Buck & Ca$his, I still look up them as purists in the rap game to this day. I believe it shows in my music as well that I’m a student of rappers like them. I would never say I’m as good as any of my influencers but when I do shows or release music, people compare my songs vibe to 2Pac, Biggie & J. Cole which is beyond flattering. I was raised in the hood of Parkdale & was always running the streets with my homies causing a scene & getting into trouble daily. I was only in 6th grade when I got cliqued up, started smoking & drinking, robbing & stealing from other kids & high schoolers, breaking into houses & drug dens, had beef with other cliques & gangs, all of which led me to get in trouble with the law. Due to my environment & my circle of friends gangster & reality rap were my go-to genres, these guys had similar upbringings and experiences as I did which registered as real to me. In the rap game, I always have and always will respect authenticity, so that’s what I try to do when I make music, keep it real with myself and try to relate to my listeners all while doing everything I can to put out good music that’s true to the core of what rap is all about. To me, rap stands for “rhythm and poetry” which is why I feel like an outsider in the rap game at times. I feel like most artists are focused on making hit music, not good music. Too many artists nowadays are all style, no substance.
“Living” was an immaculate release! What was the message behind the lyrics? How would you describe the songwriting approach you took with this song?
The message behind the lyrics of “Living” speaks for itself, I’m just giving my audience a glimpse of my life & how I’m living! I’m the truth-teller I don’t write fairy tales about my life. The hook is basically telling you I’m seeking growth, knowledge & change but I acknowledge I live in the hood, I got a history in the streets & could die any given day despite the positive changes I’m striving towards. I also state that I’m seeking some wealth for myself like all people born with little do, but that money can bring a lot of negative energy. The last bar of the hook I won’t lie, I took a shot at the rap group I first started writing & spitting with, when I was associated with them they weren’t serious about getting out there as I was so I had to leave, no hate though I wish them good fortune & success just not with me involved, time is precious so if you waste mine I won’t forget it. The bars throughout the rest of the song don’t need much explanation cause there aren’t much-hidden meanings, just talking about my experiences, current living situation & my aspirations for the future. I feel “Living” is a solid & very relatable song, I think I put out a catchy song with hit potential all while telling a bit of a story & being very lyrical. It’s one of my personal favorites.
In what ways does “Living” differentiate itself from your other releases for you? How would you describe the arrangement of this?
“Living” differentiates from my prior releases in several ways. I suppose you could say I was going for a new year new me type of mindset and I wanted “Living” to give my audience a glimpse in what direction my music would be going in the year 2020. Firstly the beat is catchy as hell and stands out from most of the other beats I’ve spat over, it gets your attention from the jump & just pulls you in as it goes along. My lyrics I believed stayed true to being lyrical, authentic & relatable but I feel like I delivered them in a manner that’s keener to what fans of rap are looking for nowadays. That was really important to me because most known rappers in my city sing & use autotune both of which I don’t do at all, I like being raw it helps me stick out and show uniqueness from the norm of what my city’s used to hearing from its rappers.
Knowing you’re constantly evolving as an artist, in what ways did you challenge yourself when making “Living”? How has this challenge influenced the growth of your artistry?
Putting together “Living” was challenging because I feel it was me stepping out of my comfort zone as an artist. Before I released “Living” I was so focused on storytelling & being real, you can really tell on my first project “Face Everything And Rise”. My second project “Dream To Fail” I feel like I showed some growth but was still prominent on being a storyteller rapper. With “Living” I wanted to still do that but understood I had to show some change & versatility within my music, I wanted to make a BANGER! I felt I achieved that with “Living” by having the catchy beat, dope lyrics, & a wicked flow. This is a song good for any occasion, whether you use it as your alarm, working out, while you're on the go, or about to roll a fat blunt, no matter the setting “Living” belongs on everyone’s playlist.
What can we expect to see from you throughout 2020?
As for my music-related plans for the rest of 2020, I’m not entirely sure what will become of them. To be perfectly honest I’m preparing myself to be a father. Got a wonderful woman at my side carrying my child within her so I’m gonna have to take a step back from rap & re-evaluate my priorities for myself, my lady, & our unborn child. I’m not stopping at all though, I’m still writing new tracks when I find the time and making plans on future singles, collaborations, and albums. I don’t want to promise you much but I guarantee you will see a few singles, & a music video for “Living” this year, I’m just not sure when. I hope to release another album but it wouldn’t be until fall or winter if things go well. I love making music but when you're unsigned with little support you only got yourself to rely on & right now I got bigger fish to fry than planning my next studio session. It might be a while until you hear my next release but believe this, you haven’t heard the last of Lo!
Listen to “Living” here.