Holding it down in Atlanta, Georgia is a hip-hop recording artist and multi-instrumentalist SM Tone with his personal new album, 'Can't Fire A Boss.'
Born Antonio Finley, SM Tone strives to help others reach their full potential. With a rich musical past and knowledge of multiple instruments, SM Tone later developed his musical craft in college. After launching the rap group Soufside Mafia, he began collaborating with numerous creatives around Atlanta to take his career one step further.
Now, SM Tone lights the Atlanta rap scene on fire in a blazing yet introspective 9-track album, 'Can't Fire A Boss.'
The record opens with the introductory track and lead single, "Growth," which perfectly sets the album's personal and reflective tone. The smooth sonics bounce through our speakers at a toe-tapping mid-tempo pace while SM Tone expands on growing past life's trials and tribulations. His bright and distinct vocal tones are incredibly easy to listen to, and we adore such an honest homage to where he comes from and where he is now.
Hitting play on track two, "Young & Dumb," this beaming track opens with an upbeat drum arrangement and the smoothest electric guitar samples. There's a certain summer vibe that comes with SM Tone's performance stylings. He then tackles the verse with incredible energy while rapping about people changing once you start attracting eyes and cash. This is another lively track that helps us better understand SM Tone's engaging performance abilities and honest approach.
Slowing things down a bit is track number three, "Found My Way," which opens with a slow and soothing acoustic guitar melody. As SM Tone jumps into the first verse, he lifts the listener with bars that encourage us to forget the past and create the life we always wanted. Fellow rapper Kev Swavé hops onto the song's second first with his charismatic stylings and rhythmic bars that expand on a similar inspiring message. We truly appreciate this track's playful and uplifting feel; it's the perfect dose of motivation.
Reaching the interlude, "Free Da Lep Interlude," SM Tone gives a shoutout to the one and only Soufside Mafia. He later mentions how the boys came from nothing and were eating crumbs, but now they're living lavish and eating at the big table. This interlude perfectly reflects the album's themes of growth and navigating through life's journey's only to come out on top.
Onto the album's fifth track and mid-way point, "PTSD," this tune kicks off with a sweet and melodic piano melody alongside bright vocal samples that melt into the bouncy and upbeat drums. SM Tone takes the first verse with dominance and confidence, touching on the tragedies he's seen but continuing to hold it down. Featured rapper/vocalist De' grabs the second verse with such playful attitude and exciting bars that heat the scene with relatable themes of intrusive thoughts, loneliness, and keeping it away from the public.
The emotion and personal vibes continue in track number six, All In." SM Tone takes this track solo and opens it with lush r&b/hip-hop production and smooth vocals about loving someone who's happily "All In." He later jumps into an energetic and passionate rap that shows us a different side of SM Tone's creative inspirations and vulnerable songwriting. This track is so refreshing; it's the perfect modern-day ballad wrapped in a hip-hop blanket.
SM Tone brings the soul and energy back in the groovy seventh track, "Keep Grinding." As the smooth and atmospheric production warmly opens the song, SM Tone moves into the drum-heavy verse and tackles themes about grinding until he can't grind anymore. He emphasizes that past mistakes only prepare you for the success you're destined to achieve with a little hard work, dedication, and maybe some talent. We love this inspirational track; it's definitely one of our favorites on the album.
Turning up the "Survival Instincts" is the album's powerful eighth track, kicking off with a neat drum arrangement and sparkling keyboard melodies. As SM Tone's bright bars start shining in the first verse, he covers themes of trying to survive through life's many painful moments. In true SM Tone fashion, he encourages us to believe in ourselves and work through those times. Featured rapper Teflon Quan jumps on the second verse with melodic bars that touch on wishing figures onto his boys and are unapologetic about his grind, moves, and success.
Landing on the album's ninth and outro track, "Keep Going," this soulful and melodic tune opens with uplifting and feel-good production. As SM Tone reminds us to "Keep Going" and how the show must go on, he pummels his verse with that familiar energy we've come to love. Rapper Kev Swavé returns for the track's second verse that blasts us with rhythm and personal themes like only giving his time to those who are worth it while keeping it real no matter what. This was such an impressive way to close the record, and we admire how SM Tone kept us inspired throughout the entire experience.
For a boost of energy, motivation, or even some feel-good hip-hop, find it all in SM Tone's latest album, 'Can't Fire A Boss,' now available on all digital streaming platforms.
Welcome to BuzzMusic, SM Tone. You've left us feeling motivated to chase our dreams after listening to your new album, 'Can't Fire A Boss.' What inspired you to create this personal and inspirational album?
Wassup BuzzMusic, it’s a pleasure as always. The main inspiration behind this album was basically my life and some of the unfortunate circumstances and situations I had to deal with on my journey to become who I am today. And it hopefully could show people no matter how bad it is right now, as long as you believe and invest in yourself that, it’ll always get better.
Could you tell us more about your group Soufside Mafia? Did other members help you create your new album, 'Can't Fire A Boss?'
Soufside Mafia is an independent record label based out of East Point, Ga, that I founded in 2019. We currently have eight artists on the label, me being included, and we do everything in-house from Studio & Engineering, Mix & Mastering, Photography, Videography, Cover Art & Custom Merchandise, so we’re basically a one-stop-shop. & Yes, I have three features on the album from Kev Swavè, Teflon Quan & our newest artist De’. KFP Ken did Mix & Mastering on a few songs on the album as well.
Which track from 'Can't Fire A Boss' is the most personal to you and why?
The most personal track on the album to me would have to be Young & Dumb because I express regrets and reflect on lost friendships and past traumas, all put together so beautifully. That’s why I had to make it the second track on the album. Not going to say too much cause y’all gotta go listen to completely understand. Shout out to the producer Relly Made.
What was your favorite part about creating the album 'Can't Fire A Boss?' What experiences did you appreciate most?
I actually enjoy the whole process, especially since I’m so hands-on with everything. But if I had to choose one, it would have to be writing the treatments and shooting the music videos for the songs. I’m in the process of making an eight-part series that links the videos together so the world can better understand SM Tone. Part 1 is out now exclusively on the Soufside Mafia YouTube channel.
Why is helping people reach their full potential so important to you? Do you feel the themes within 'Can't Fire A Boss' help listeners do that?
Helping people reach their full potential is important to me because growing up, I was always searching for positive guidance in the hood which I feel like I never fully found, so I because that guidance for my hood. I built my business with the vision of helping as many people as people see their own potential, and that’s why my first album was called “Anything Is Possible.”Yea, I feel like the album should inspire people to believe in themselves more and show how powerful good investments are. But if anything, I would just want people to know that it’s not about how you start but about it’s who you become on the journey.