On That 2012 Mixtape, you said “I do this as a hobby” When did you decide to stop pursuing music as a hobby and put 10 toes down?
I really made the jump in 2015 when I decided to leave college and really focus on the pursuit of a music career. I was home for Christmas break and I told my parents I wasn’t interested in going back (I said this every year until my junior year) and they decided that it might be best for me to actually take some time off from school and follow something I clearly was passionate about.
Throughout this year, you’ve talked about this new self-produced project you have coming out. At first, it was called Egocentrism, now it looks to be called ITIS. What’s going on with this project and what could we be expecting from it?
So Egocentrism and Itis are actually two projects I plan to drop this year in a series. I’m planning to release a couple of small projects this year with me behind the production. Its really about introducing my fans to me as a whole artist and solidifying a specific sound for myself. In between these projects I’ll also have some other tracks dropping with other people behind the production. I will say ITIS will come before Egocentrism. Egocentrism has a specific narrative while Itis is more of a variety platter.
You said, “me overseeing my own production is vital to my next steps in my career”. How has producing helped you grow as an artist?
In the words of my engineer BanksTheGenius, production opens up a can of worms for sure. Production has allowed me to feel like I’m making more authentic and cohesive music, I was running into a roadblock where a lot of my projects were hit or miss with the tracklist because some of the production fit me better while other songs clashed and sounded less complete. Production also has its negatives sometimes I feel like I over analyze my music, I definitely miss the simplicity of just getting a beat and writing to it. When you open up that part of your brain that really creates, it brings in a flood of worries and overthinking that you cant just shut off. That being said its worth it.
Looking back over the years, what has been your favorite record you’ve made?
I would have to say my song Happily alone is sitting at my top favorite. It was the first time I created a beat for a song and everything really clicked for me. I was going through a writer block and I started to realize I wasn’t making music cause I literally wasn’t creating the music. I got Maschine and started making beats every day all day and I fell in love with the learning process. As soon as I started creating the beat for Happily Alone the lyrics came soon after and that’s when I realized it was time for me to sit in the driving chair of production for a while.
What’s one Chicago collab you would love to make happen for you?
To be honest my one Chicago collab I wanted won’t be happening anymore…RIP Bernie Mac. I always wanted to have a project narrated by him and he’s an idol of mine being from Chicago that would have meant the world.