Posts tagged with "Jay-Z"

Drake “Certified Lover Boy” Out Now

Listen HERE

Drake‘s Tracklisting: 

1. Champagne Poetry
2. Papi’s Home
3. Girls Want Girls ft. Lil Baby
4. In The Bible ft. Lil Durk & Giveon 
5. Love All ft. Jay-Z
6. Fair Trade ft. Travis Scott
7. Way 2 Sexy ft. Future & Young Thug 
8. TSU
9. N 2 Deep ft. Future 
10. Pipe Down
11. Yebba’s Heartbreak
12. No Friends In The Industry
13. Knife Talk ft. 21 Savage & Project Pat
14. 7am On Bridle Path
15. Race My Mind
16. Fountains ft. Tems 
17. Get Along Better ft. Ty Dolla $ign 
18. You Only Live Twice ft. Rick Ross & Lil Wayne
19. IMY2 ft. Kid Cudi
20. Fucking Fans
21. The Remorse

Beyonce illustration by Maria Soloman from 360 Magazine for use by 360 Magazine

Beyoncé × Jay-Z × Tiffany & Co. – “ABOUT LOVE”

By: Rumnik K Ghuman

On Vogue last week, Tiffany & Co launched its new campaign with Beyoncé and Jay-Z. The main purpose of the “About Love” campaign is still uncertain, but has received many negative reactions. For one reason, the diamond, Beyoncé wore in the promotional pictures. A 128.54 carat yellow diamond is a priceless piece of Tiffany’s collection. It’s amazing how Beyoncé is the fourth woman and the first black woman to wear that diamond. But why did Beyoncé draw adverse attention to this campaign?

The story goes back to 1877 in South Africa when Kimberley was mining diamonds during the British colonial regime. These rocks were more than a hundred years old and are considered blood diamonds. African workers were forced to extract a certain quantity of diamonds, otherwise Revolutionary United Font would cut each other’s hands or legs. This horrible act of blood would happen in war zones and in difficult times for Africans, such as discrimination. That is why they were named Blood Diamonds during this period. 

This bad story brought a huge defamation to Beyoncé’s mark, as an African-American herself and never supported the exploitation of Africans. For example, “Black is King” on Disney, is one of many projects produced by Beyoncé to decolonize black masculinity. According to Beyoncé’s close friends, she did not know the history of this rock and would never have worn it. It was the first time Beyoncé and Jay-Z had participated in a joint campaign. 

Tiffany & Co has completely denied that the diamond is a blood diamond since they have taken “rigorous measures” to ensure that conflict diamonds do not appear in its inventory. As stated in their website, “As global leaders in sustainable luxury, Tiffany & Co. is committed to sourcing natural and precious materials in an ethical and sustainable manner. We have a zero-tolerance policy toward conflict diamonds, and source our diamonds only from known sources and countries that are participants in the Kimberley Process.” As the audience still can’t accept to believe Tiffany, back in 2003, The Kimberley Process was created by the UN to eliminate all blood diamonds to enter the mainstream diamond market. 

360 Magazine finds it difficult to accept that the necklace is a blood diamond, and that it is on Beyoncé, an African woman herself. It is not fair that she is receiving such negative attention for wearing this necklace. Whereas Lady Gaga had worn this same necklace in 2019 in the Oscars awards and didn’t receive any negative feedback. Many fans showed up on Twitter to express their feelings. There are a number of sides to the story of whether or not Beyoncé knew about the diamond. And, she didn’t choose the diamond to wear herself. 

Since we’ve all heard of Jay-Z’s music, his raps include a majority of meanings on buying goods, art and jewelry. It is ironic that this raises the subject of the enormous piece of art that is presented in the campaign. It’s from Jean-Michel Basquiat, who recently passed away. Basquiat was a Puerto Rican/Haitian American painter better known to be a star of anti-settlement graffiti. His work reflected racial and social consciousness.

This campaign did not receive the recognition it wanted with the ultimate message behind “About Love”. Many people have realized the ugly truth about an unfinished history of white supremacy and colonialism of that campaign and the diamond industry. The campaign highlighted more brutal African history than “About Love.”

Image via Capitol Music Group for 360 Magazine

HD4President – Touch Down 2 Cause Hell (Bow Bow Bow)

BATON-ROUGE, LA-BASED HD4PRESIDENT SHARES OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR TOUCH DOWN 2 CAUSE HELL (BOW BOW BOW)

TikTok Views Surpass 1.5 Billion

HD4President shared the official video for his breakthrough hit, Touch Down 2 Cause Hell (Bow Bow Bow). View HERE.

I feel like the ‘Touch Down’ video captures the right vision for the song and matches the viral moments from TikTok and social media, says HD4President. And it shows good vibes and fun times, bringing fun back to the music scene.

Initially released independently, Touch Down 2 Cause Hell (Bow Bow Bow) exploded after a TikTok user uploaded a video of herself and a friend dancing to the track in May 2021. To date, there have been over 1.2 million TikTok creations, including clips by Lizzo, Coi Leray, City Girls, Latto, Niecy Nash, Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba, and over 1.5 billion views on the platform. Complex included Touch Down 2 Cause Hell (Bow Bow Bow) in its recent round-up of The Best TikTok Trends and Challenges Right Now.

HD4President delivers brazen lyrics, serving as a reflection of his life experiences. Growing up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, he found inspiration for his music in life itself, as well as in the music of favorite artists such as Soulja Slim, JAY-Z and Juvenile. While still staying true to his Baton Rouge jiggin roots, HD4President’s music is a unique mix of hip hop, R&B, soul and pop, which translates into infectious, high energy hits.

photo by Mass Appeal for use by 360 MAGAZINE

Mass Appeal Announces Two New Executive Hires

MASS APPEAL ANNOUNCES TWO NEW TRAILBLAZING EXECUTIVE HIRES

JESSICA RIVERA NAMED GENERAL MANAGER & JENYA MEGGS NAMED SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF CONTENT

FEMALE EXECUTIVES TO HELP LEAD THE CHARGE OF MASS APPEAL’S MONUMENTAL #HIPHOP50 PROGRAM

Mass Appeal has announced two new key executive hires – two trailblazing women who will play a pivotal role in elevating and expanding the entertainment company’s presence. Multi-faceted executive Jessica Rivera will serve as the General Manager, Music. In this role, Rivera will oversee creative and day-to-day operations of Mass Appeal’s music division; label, publishing and contributing across Mass Appeal’s other two divisions in content and creative services. Seasoned music and entertainment executive Jenya Meggs will serve as the Senior Vice President of Content where alongside Mass Appeal’s Chief Creative Officer Sacha Jenkins, she will spearhead programming strategies and partnerships of Mass Appeal’s growing content slate.

Over the past year, Mass Appeal has been quietly working to develop the platform, #HipHop50, aimed at celebrating Hip Hop’s 50th anniversary in the most authentic and globally impactful way possible. With #HipHop50, Mass Appeal’s mission is to ensure that Hip Hop’s historic milestone will be celebrated in a way befitting of its massive influence, as well as engage fans across the globe. Mass Appeal partner Nas says, “This is the biggest birthday in the world!” Over the next six months, Mass Appeal will be announcing various partnerships for their #HipHop50 platform with best-in-class companies in verticals ranging from original music, content, podcasts, live experiential, products, education, publishing and more – along with a charitable component attached to everything.

Both Rivera and Meggs will help lead the charge for Mass Appeal’s expansive #HipHop50 program. Rivera will work with Nas to oversee multiple original music projects aimed at celebrating Hip Hop’s incredible history. Meanwhile, Meggs will spearhead the content partnership with Showtime/ViacomCBS, which will encompass unscripted series and features, podcasts, and digital shorts by and about some of the foremost names in the genre.

In her former role as head of artist relations for YouTube’s West Coast territory, Rivera’s achievements included heading up a livestream-based marketing campaign that helped catapult Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time ever. Recognized as one of Billboard’s 2020 R&B/Hip Hop Power Players, Rivera spent 11 years at Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG), where she held the position of Executive Vice President/Head of East Coast Operations and Creative, as well as curated or identified the songwriters/producers behind more than 25 chart-topping singles, including the 12-times-platinum  “Love The Way You Lie” by Eminem ft Rihanna, the 11-times-platinum “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars;  and the certified-diamond “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons (one of the best-selling songs in music history). Before joining Universal, Rivera signed Rihanna at 16-years-old to her first publishing deal EMI.

“It’s an inspiring time to join Mass Appeal and continue to build the music division and elevate the artist’s narrative through the synergy of Music and media,” said Rivera. “Hip Hop 50 will uniquely bring together these worlds of creativity, all to celebrate Hip Hop’s 50th anniversary!”

Before joining the Mass Appeal team, Meggs served as the original content producer for Apple Music, where she developed the streaming platform’s innovative Up Next New Artist Program. Additionally, Meggs sold and produced the BET Web Series Brooklyn Blue Sky (2017), as well as executive produced the BET George Floyd Special (2020). Prior to working in production & development, Meggs began her career working in the video marketing department at Universal Music Group and later Warner Music Group. She’s led the video marketing campaigns for GRAMMY Award-winning and multi-platinum selling artists, such as JAY-Z, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Rihanna, Kanye West, Common and Jill Scott.

“I’m excited to use my talents and join Mass Appeal on this journey, to expand the narrative of film and TV, while creating exceptional content,” said Meggs.  “Mass Appeal has brilliantly created a path for authentic storytelling journeys. Hip-Hop 50 will bring together the best we have to offer to serve the culture the most defining celebration it deserves.”

Both Rivera and Meggs will work closely with the company’s CEO Peter Bittenbender and co-founder, Hip Hop legend Nas.

“Great moment as the team expands with the hiring of Jessica and Jenya, both of whom I have had the pleasure of knowing and working with for years. I look forward to working with Jessica as the GM of the label, Jenya as the SVP of content and together as a team as we scale our #HipHop50 program and Mass Appeal’s overall business” – Nasir “Nas” Jones

“Both Jessica and Jenya bring a tremendous amount of experience, passion and relationships to the company at a time that could not be more exciting. Having leadership of their level around #HipHop50 is a dream come true and I’m looking forward to what’s to come.” – Peter Bittenbender

About Mass Appeal
Mass Appeal is an entertainment company dedicated to telling stories from the perspective of those who shape and shift culture. Since 1996, we have documented the emerging movements that influence popular ideas. Today, Mass Appeal is the elevated voice of Hip Hop and its ever-expanding sphere of influence. Integrated offerings in content, music and creative services stoke Mass Appeal’s ability to maximize the impact of our output. Our diverse school of thought separates us from friends and foes alike.

photo by Chris Cuffaro for use by 360 Magazine

THE GO-GO’S ANNOUNCE 2021/2022 TOUR DATES

THE GO-GO’S ANNOUNCE 2021/2022 NORTH AMERICAN WEST COAST DATES IN CELEBRATION OF THEIR UPCOMING INDUCTION INTO THE ROCK & ROLL HALL OF FAME  

The multi-platinum selling Los Angeles rock band The Go-Go’s announce their 2021/2022 North American west coast dates to celebrate the band’s upcoming induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

The new live dates include intimate shows in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, and New Year’s Eve & New Year’s Day performances at The Venetian Theatre in Las Vegas. Tickets go on sale Friday, June 25 at 10am PT.

We really missed seeing and playing for our fans and we are happy we can experience and enjoy live music with each other once again. We are looking forward to celebrating and bringing in a brighter new year with everyone,” says The Go-Go’s.

With concerts finally making a very welcomed return, longtime fans can celebrate with the newest inductees to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the new generation of fans can see the band that they discovered through the documentary,” says Art Cisneros, The Go-Go’s Manager.

As the first multi-platinum-selling, all-female band to play their own instruments, write their own songs and soar to No. 1 on the album charts, The Go-Go’s are the most successful female rock band of all time.

Rooted in the early L.A. punk scene, Charlotte Caffey (lead guitar, keyboards, vocals), Belinda Carlisle (lead vocals), Gina Schock (drums, percussion, vocals), Kathy Valentine (bass guitar, vocals) and Jane Wiedlin (guitar, vocals) didn’t PLAY the part of bad girls; they were genuine punk rockers. Now, this October, The Go-Go’s will be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame alongside Tina Turner, Carole King, JAY-Z, Foo Fighters and Todd Rundgren.

In 2020 the band released their documentary THE GO-GO’S, which first premiered at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews, achieving a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and won a 2020 Critics Choice Award for “Best Music Documentary” in addition to receiving the honor of “Most Compelling Living Subjects in a Documentary.” Directed by Alison Ellwood, the candid and archive-rich documentary assesses the group’s place in music and the first to set the record straight about their historical ascent to global stardom. The Go-Go’s first new recording in nearly 20 years, Club Zero hit the Top 10 on the Rock Digital Song Sales chart upon its release and the documentary captures them working on an early version of the song.

Date                 Venue City, State
Dec 28 SF Masonic Auditorium San Francisco, CA (Purchase Tickets
Dec 29 Microsoft Theater Los Angeles, CA (Purchase Tickets
Dec 31 The Venetian Theatre Las Vegas, NV (Purchase Tickets
Jan 1 The Venetian Theatre Las Vegas, NV (Purchase Tickets
Jan 3 Civic Theatre San Diego, CA (Purchase Tickets)

The Go-Go’s rose to fame following the release of their 1981 debut album, Beauty and the Beat, a collection of infectious tracks with huge hooks. Locked at No. 1 on the Billboard charts for six consecutive weeks, Beauty and the Beat was one of the most successful debut albums of all time, featuring the hits Our Lips Are Sealed (one of Rolling Stone’s ‘Top 100 Pop Singles’) and “We Got the Beat” and resulted in a Grammy® nomination for Best New Artist. The Go-Go’s became a global phenomenon and blazed brand-new trails in music – for women in particular.

 

Art by Kaelen of 360 for use by 360 Magazine

Tidal announces Triumph Over Trauma Special

Today TIDAL, in partnership with influential politico, lawyer and advocate Angela Rye, is announcing the premiere of Triumph Over Trauma: Black Wall Street Then and Now – a one-hour long special commemorating the centennial of one of the worst attacks of racial violence in American history: the Tulsa Race Massacre. The special will premiere on Saturday, June 19 at 6 pm ET to also honor the Juneteenth holiday, which celebrates the effective end of slavery in the United States.

The Tulsa Race Massacre devastated the prosperous African-American business community in Tulsa, Oklahoma’s Greenwood District known as Black Wall Street and claimed hundreds of lives. Viewers will hear from three living survivors of the massacre – Mother Fletcher, Mother Randle, and Uncle Red – who will discuss memories of Black Wall Street, escaping the night of the massacre, their legacy, and much more. The hour-long special will also feature local politicians, business leaders, Black youth of Tusla, activists, writers, and more reflecting, learning, inspiring, and growing – and most importantly shedding light on untold history.

The special will be broadcast simultaneously on TIDAL’s YouTube channel as well as in-app – both members and non-members alike will be able to view. You can find a preview here.

Highlighting the historical moments that impact society is an integral part of TIDAL’s DNA. By celebrating how integral all voices are to culture and community, TIDAL continues its commitment to providing its members with culture-shifting content.

chessboard image

Detroit City Chess Club × Black Goes First

Today, global creative agency Anomaly launches a new boundary-breaking initiative, Black Goes First, to raise awareness about implicit bias and to raise funds for the Detroit City Chess Club, one of the largest, longest-standing, predominantly African American competing youth chess clubs in the U.S.

In chess, there is implicit power behind the first and most consequential rule: White goes first. This means White gets a leg up on the game commonly referred to as the “first move advantage.” This rule also represents the unconscious bias and unwritten (and sometimes written) rules in society that directly oppresses and suppresses the Black community in our daily lives, restricting education, access, and opportunity.

Anomaly remains dedicated to addressing implicit bias. As such, the goal of Black Goes First is to inspire a new generation of players to fall in love with the game by building confidence in and access to chess for Black youth, in hopes that they may one day join the ranks of the most skilled players in the world and reach the pinnacle – becoming a Grandmaster. Currently, out of 1721 Grandmasters, only 4 are Black.

“Chess is a game that demands that we truly stop and think about how our minds work and how our thoughts affect reality. The idea of turning a traditional chess rule on its head to illustrate the critical issue of unconscious bias is a powerful way to initiate much needed discussions on this important topic.” Maurice Ashley, International Chess Grandmaster.

In order to help bring awareness to the cause and in support of Black Music Month, Anomaly has partnered with music industry veteran Chaka Zulu and friends, including celebrity chess enthusiasts within the hip hop community to auction a signed premium chessboard with the key new rule: Black Goes First. The predominantly black, 14″ x 14″ x 1″ board is made from a beautiful matte black composite stone. The rule change, engraved in stone, faces each player, front and center. This campaign launches today and the Auction goes live on June 17 ahead of Juneteenth via BlackGoesFirst.com. Iconic hip-hop superstars JAY-Z and RZA, NBA legend Carmelo Anthony, and chess Grandmaster Maurice Ashley have committed their signatures to further elevate the idea.

“Hip Hop Culture has a love affair with the game of chess and they’ve been intertwined for years. In my home, we’ve always played Black Goes First. The music, the game, and the culture build character and critical life skills that are required for the progress and survival of Black youth yesterday, today, and tomorrow.” Chaka Zulu, chess enthusiast and music industry veteran.

Anomaly’s Black Goes First campaign aims to awaken people to blatant unconscious bias in chess and life, while amplifying and supporting the next generation of Black chess champions by donating 100% of all funds raised to the Detroit City Chess Club and setting a new standard for equitable community campaigns.

“Radically centering equity and service, Anomalys Black Goes First campaign uniquely challenges implicit bias and inequitable campaign models that don’t work directly with and for the communities they seek to engage. BGF is a campaign designed in support of and in partnership with the Black community to support Black youth. The campaign employs 100% Black influencer/celebrity support, and 100% of profits from the auction will be donated to the Detroit City Chess Club.” Kristi Henderson, Global Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Anomaly.

Find out more about the auction and the project, and check out the film at the website: BlackGoesFirst.com.

Will-Claye Press-Pic from Alex John from Red Bull Records for use by 360

Will Claye – Wee Hours

Today, hip-hop artist and Olympic medalist Will Claye releases his latest single, “Wee Hours,” out now via Red Bull Records. Written by Claye, “Wee Hours” was produced by Grammy-winning songwriter and producer DJ Khalil, best known for his work with Jay-Z, Kanye West, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and more.

Drawing from his own experiences, the strength of “Wee Hours” lies in Claye’s introspective and poignant lyrics, which he delivers with a West Coast-influenced flair. As the opening melodies and subtle instrumentations float in and out of focus, the single’s smooth production is effortlessly juxtaposed against Claye’s heavy-hitting flow.

“This track is inspired by my city, my people, and the kids who are growing up where I come from,” says Claye of the release. “I wanted to speak for people whose voices have been suppressed. I want to inspire my people and show them that even through all the horrific things we have gone through as a people, we can make it through and rise above it all.”

The release of “Wee Hours” follows the announcement of Elevate, the forthcoming documentary from Red Bull, set for release on Tuesday, June 8. The short film follows Claye as he trains for the Olympics and records new music, working to make his mark on the world. As his moment in the spotlight parallels a cultural boiling point surrounding racial injustice, Claye seeks to use his voice to inspire his community’s youth, serving as a positive role model for the next generation. Watch the trailer here.

About Will Claye
Three-time Olympic medalist Will Claye started his path as a world-class athlete. By way of track and field, he was able to move into starting his brand ELEVATE, music, and philanthropy. Will’s brand grew largely at the London Games in 2012, where he earned a bronze medal in the long jump and a silver medal in the triple jump to become the first man since 1936 and the first American since 1904 to obtain medals in both events. The Phoenix, AZ native of Sierra Leone-descent solidified himself as the #3 triple jumper of all time in 2019 and at the same time released an EP, WEST SIDE STORY, and single “TMS.”

The catalyst for Will’s music career came from artist YG inviting him to the studio and them creating “IDGAF,” what is now known as a classic West Coast record. From there, Will began to create his own lane and his own sound, taking inspiration from Bob Marley, Andre 3000, Snoop Dogg, DJ Quick, Pharrell, Jay Z, Nipsey Hussle, Kendrick Lamar, and Nate Dogg. With a wide array of influences, Will has created a sound that is eclectic and diverse, based on how he is feeling and what is going on in life. He is a rare combination of talent and genuine humility, recognizing that he can use his status as an artist and professional athlete to help others.

About DJ Khalil
DJ Khalil is a thirteen-time Grammy nominee and three-time Grammy award-winning songwriter and producer from Los Angeles, CA. His career started as one-half of the acclaimed underground hip-hop duo Self Scientific alongside rapper Chace Infinite. After catching the ear of mega-producer Dr. Dre early on in his career, Dre signed him as an in-house producer to Aftermath Records, where he continued to develop and hone his skills. Over the years, he has gone on to write and produce songs and albums with Eminem, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Usher, Big Sean, Pink, Gwen Stefani, Logic, Anderson .Paak, A$AP Rocky, Celine Dion, and many others, winning his first Grammy for his work on Eminem’s 2010 album, Recovery.

Continuing his run of success, Khalil co-wrote and produced Aloe Blacc’s Top 5 pop worldwide single “The Man,” which has sold over six million units worldwide, and won a Clio Award for music innovation through its inclusion in the 2013-2014 Beats by Dre campaign that was featured in the Super Bowl broadcast as well as the NBA finals. In 2018, Khalil created the end title song “Elevate” for Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse. The film won the Academy Award for Best Animated Film, and the soundtrack album has sold over two million units, which has made him one of the most sought-after producers for film and television synchronization. Khalil recently topped the pop charts with two songs on Logic’s #1 album Bobby Tarantino II (“Iconic” and “Everybody Dies”), four songs on Nipsey Hussle’s Top 5 album Victory Lap, Eminem’s #1 album Revival, and two songs on Big Sean’s #1 album, Detroit 2.
Follow Will Claye
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Carly Gibert "Interstellar" image via Abby Harari at Def Jam Recordings and 10:22PM for use by 360 Magazine

Carly Gibert QxA

Carly Gibert is a 19-year-old house, R&B, and pop music artist, who recently was signed to 10:22PM/Def Jam Recordings. The bi-lingual, Spanish born singer just released her groovy single, “Interstellar,” which reflects on her move from Spain to LA. The disco-inspired bop appears on NOW Volume 79, and can be listened to HERE. Gibert has been making music since the age of four, and her passion for creating is evident in all of her releases. We sat down with the rising house star to speak about the inspiration behind her latest release, her songwriting process, and whats to come next in 2021.

  1. What inspired you to write “Interstellar?”

“Interstellar” is about trying to make someone care for you as much as you care for them. You would do anything for the other person, but they only think about what’s best for them. When I moved to LA from Spain–where I was born and raised–I kind of started a new life, it felt like living in another universe. “Interstellar” actually means “living between stars,” and that is how LA felt to me. It only took me moving to the other side of the planet to realize that I wasn’t taking care of myself. It also references the movie Interstellar (which is one of my favorite movies of all time) with its theme of leaving your life behind and starting over in an entirely different setting.

  1. How would you describe the sound of “Interstellar” in three words?

Futuristic, disco and progress.

  1. What musicians influence your music style the most?

Not specifically for this song, but I grew up with and have always been very inspired by Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Frank Ocean, Mac Miller and Tyler the Creator. I definitely grew up on house music as well, since my dad would play it at home all the time; and I think you can actually hear that on “Interstellar.” The song has a kind of house vibe to it.

  1. What does your song writing process usually look like? Was this process the same for the writing of “Interstellar”?

I usually start off with one of the 100,000 notes on my phone. I write notes every single day–anywhere, anytime. You never know when the inspiration is going to hit, so this is how I keep track of my thoughts. When I find a lyric idea or a concept that resonates with how I’m feeling, I start writing random lines around it. At first, it honestly doesn’t make any sense and nothing rhymes. At that point, it’s all about placing the right lines in the right places and making them fit into a melody. This was also the writing process of “Interstellar.” I sometimes like to start with the melodies, though, and just build the lyrics based on the melody.

  1. If you could design your dream music festival where you were the headlining act, who would you choose to perform alongside?

If we’re talking about VERY ambitious dreams, I would obviously say Beyoncé, Jay-Z and Kanye. Then, of course, Frank Ocean, Tyler the Creator, A$AP Rocky, Doja Cat, Audrey Nuna, SZA, BIA, Anderson .Paak, Rosalía, Saint Bodhi, Little Simz, Kali Uchis, Kaytranada, Rico Nasty, Tinashe, Ryan Beatty, Daniel Caesar, Miguel, Jorja Smith…there are too many great artists.

  1. What has it been like being signed and working with 10:22PM/DefJam?

If someone told me 3 years ago that I would be working with the people I’m working with today, I wouldn’t believe them. The people I’ve met and am surrounded by are some of the people I look up to the most, and I’m so grateful for everyone who made it possible. I have a very close relationship with everyone on my team. I speak to my A&R literally every day, and I’m so lucky to be able to talk directly to the label if I ever need something. I’m super involved in all aspects of my career, so having a direct relationship with the label is very reassuring.

  1. What is something about you or your music that fans might not expect?

I would definitely say singing in Spanish. It’s something I’ve never done before, and I’m so excited to do it. I don’t have any full songs in Spanish at the moment, but I do have some verses here and there. The next song I’m releasing actually includes Spanish verses. Growing up, I was very insecure about singing in Spanish because I thought my accent was weird. It didn’t flow as naturally as English did, even though Spanish is my first language. Through the years, I’ve been practicing improving my diction and I feel a lot more comfortable now. I guess I just had to make it my own and embrace the “Spanish person who can’t articulate Spanish” aspect of myself.

  1. What is next to come from you in 2021?

I have two more songs that I really love coming out in the next couple of months. Hopefully an EP by the end of the year? (Nobody confirmed that—I just made it up—but I’m putting it out in the world). To be honest, all I want to do this year is release all the music I’ve been working on for the past 2 years. These songs are so special to me, and I can’t wait for everyone to listen to what I have to say.

Carly Gibert "Interstellar" image via Abby Harari at Def Jam Recordings and 10:22PM for use by 360 Magazine

Morray illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

2021 BREAKOUT ARTIST MORRAY

2021 BREAKOUT ARTIST MORRAY SIGNS TO INTERSCOPE RECORDS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH MOE SHALIZI’S PICK SIX RECORDS

Morray’s Hit Single “Quicksand” Surpasses 50 Million Views on YouTube “Big Decisions” And “Switched Up” Continue His Harmonic Rise

The wins continue in 2021 for North Carolina’s Morray. After achieving a stunning rise in notoriety thanks to his hit single “Quicksand,” the artist has officially signed to Interscope through music executive Moe Shalizi and his Pick Six label.

“Morray is an undeniable talent with an infectious energy,” says Interscope Geffen A&M CEO, John Janick. “We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Moe & his incredible team at Pick Six for what’s to come.”  Morray shares the same excitement noting, “It’s just so dope to be on a winning team with pic six and to add a powerhouse like interscope to the mix is just an amazing blessing.” Moe Shalizi adds, “There was so much synergy between our side and interscope that it just felt right, we are really excited to be working with John Janick and the rest of the team”

Since breaking through rap’s ceiling with the harmonious “Quicksand” in October 2020, Morray gained fans from all over hip-hop including Drake, fellow Fayetteville icon J. Cole and North Carolina native Da Baby. He also received a nod from Jay-Z when “Quicksand” was added to Jay’s “2020 Vision Under COVID-19” playlist. “We are very impressed with what Morray & Pick Six have been able to accomplish over the last year and are thrilled to be their partners on this journey,” expresses Nicole Wyskoarko, EVP/Co-Head of A&R at Interscope Geffen A&M.

Soon after “Quicksand,” he released a series of four songs that fleshed out his complex backstory. On “Switched Up” and “Low Key,” he reflects his hardened past. On “Dreamland,” he remembers an impoverished childhood defined by crashing at motels and friends’ houses (“some carpet ‘cause it’s better than the pavement”) and holidays and birthdays gone by with no gifts. On “Big Decisions,” his first release of 2021, he ruminates on his responsibilities as a breadwinner for his family and a role model for his community.

Morray has found a significant audience on YouTube in particular—each song was released alongside a music video that eclipsed one million views within a matter of days. Born Morae Ruffin, Morray made his public singing debut at age 4, when his mother and grandmother called on him in church to bless the congregation with a rendition of his favorite song, “I Believe I Can Fly.” He would later serve as the lead singer of his church choir. He’s worked nearly every job imaginable just to make ends meet—from fast food to construction, calling centers and even driving uber until he found his voice in music. Through his honest and vivid storytelling and emotional recordings he began the process of creating his songbook that included “Quicksand.” The first time I heard Quicksand I knew Morray was a global superstar in the making,” says Baroline, VP of A&R at Interscope. “I’m excited for the world to get to know him and hear what he’s been working on.”

His songs are as honest as they are catchy. And though he’s become a hometown hero in Fayetteville, the deep sense of struggle he evokes in his music gives it a universal appeal. “I’m speaking for every person that has real emotions,” he said. “I’m speaking to everyone that has a heart. Every song that you hear from me is a real feeling. I want people to cry with me. I want people to grow with me. I want people to understand where we’ve come from, and that we can always make it out of everything.”  

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