History tends to repeat itself and we hope it does when it comes to winning another NBA championship! The amount of good music coming out of Toronto is keeping the world of contemporary music on their feet. The true north weaves into a bigger contemporary story, which is full of new up and comers that are setting high standards for our youth and leading the way with great music and productive, evolved mentalities.
As much as Drake knocked down many doors, there’s a sense of responsibility to acknowledge the new kids too. They are fighting (and winning) their life challenges, through dope music, art and many other creative avenues. Every generation has faced different kinds of barriers and emotional burdens, and through it all, music is one thing that keeps on inspiring. Puffy L’z, a young Somali kid from the Regent Park neighbourhood of Toronto, is one of the good ones. He’s an artist full of potential, a great personality and a non-threatening playful sense of humour.
His whole demeanour makes its very clear how staying positive and not letting anyone knock your hustle is the way to go, which we cannot agree with more! Puffy L’z took sometime out of his busy schedule to sit down and have a conversation about a lot of things, which includes his plans for music and an album release, a UK and European tour, powerful collabs and his opinion on fellow artist SAFE. Sitting back in a relaxed posture with his Facetime going off, Puffy L’z is on a mission to make the streets hot with his music once again.
RESPECT: Toronto is going through one of it’s biggest historical phases. Do you feel we can do better or this is the best it gets?
Puffy L’z: I feel like we can definitely do better. There are stages to it, obviously there is Drake and The Weeknd but it’s going to get better. The city as a whole, we can do better. For music, right now we are in a good place. But Community wise, there is a lot we need to work on.
RESPECT: Growing up seeing Raptors play all the time, name the worst Raptor players.
Puffy L’z: Andrea Bargnani, Matt Bonner, Jorge Garbajosa, and Sam Mitchell, even though he’s a coach, throw him in there too!
RESPECT: You know what we’re really excited about? Your new Spotify release “Best Of Me’ sounds like a summer jam! Is that something fans can expect more of in the future?
Puffy L’z: For this project I tried to give fans a little bit of everything. So it’s not like only hood rap or street rap or club rap. I tried to give everybody at least two records of each vibe, because people don’t expect me to sing or do melodies. I wanted to showcase my versatility on Take No L’z!
RESPECT: That wasn’t the only record you dropped you recently teamed up with Maaly Raw too. What was it like collaborating with him?
Puffy L’z: I met Maaly Raw through a friend of mine and he sent the beat. It was good collaborating with him. I’ve always liked his beats, he’s worked with a lot of people in the industry. Giggs loved the beat too, so me and Giggs caught a vibe on it and we just did our thing on it. It was sick collaborating with him. Making the track was a very organic process, and we shot the video guerrilla style in about half an hour on Gigg’s Birthday, after the club in London.
RESPECT: How was it like working with Giggs?
Puffy L’z: I’ve known Giggs for a minute now, so like 5 years. He heard the song ‘Still’ (Still by the Rabba) on OVO Radio. From that point, he reached out. He made a remix to Rabba back then, you can hear it on Youtube. Whenever I’m in London I always check in with him, he’s the first person I hit when I get off the plane! Once you check in with him, in London, you’re good everywhere. This last time I was there, it just worked out that he was free, we got in the studio, and made this record “Front Gate”!
RESPECT: Are you dropping a project anytime soon?
Puffy L’z: July 19th! ‘Take No L’z’ will be here! My fans and the city have been waiting a couple of years for me to drop. I was living my life and taking my time with it, but it’s finally done and I’m looking forward to sharing the music!
RESPECT: Are we expecting any features?
Puffy L’z: Safe, Smoke Dawg, Jay Whiss and Giggs.
RESPECT: Jay Whiss has a very traditional hip-hop flow, where as SAFE got the melodies.
Puffy L’z: Jay Whiss is one of my favorite artists coming out of the city, bar for bar. His lyrics and flow are on point, you can understand what he’s saying. He has an old school influence, but his music sounds modern! Safe is very versatile, and he’s on a legendary path. You have to tune in to him and keep your eye on him. He’s one of the best coming out of the city! Safe is the GOAT.
RESPECT: SAFE’s song “Listen Closely”, probably my favourite by far. Like if you really pay attention he’s saying some sh*t!
Puffy L’z: Yeah you have to really pay attention to Safe’s lyrics. On one record he’ll be singing about love, but on another record he’ll be talking about some real sh*t. We went through a lot of stuff together growing up, and his music tells those stories.
(as this is happening, Puffy Ls briefly takes a facetime from SAFE and plays their unreleased collaborative track “Big Timer” from the Rapper’s new project)
(as this is happening, Puffy Ls briefly takes a facetime from SAFE and plays their unreleased collaborative track “Big Timer” from the Rapper’s new album)
RESPECT: Since you’re big in the UK, do you have plans to tour their anytime soon?
Puffy L’z: Definitely when I drop this project. I wanna get a response from the UK then I’m going to set up a little tour. I have a couple of places where I would go for sure. London, Manchester, there are definitely a couple of places, but yeah, I will figure that out after the project drops.
RESPECT: Have you explored Europe yet?
Puffy L’z: Yeah, shout out to Drake, I was on The Boy Meets World Europe Tour, so I got to go to a lot of places. He gave me the opportunity of a lifetime to be on the road with him for 15 dates, and see most of Europe. It was a blessing for real!
RESPECT: What was your favourite place in Europe?
Puffy L’z: I’d have to say Paris, because it’s somewhere I always wanted to go, aside from London. There’s so much history and culture there, and the city has a vibe!
RESPECT: Being a muslim kid from the ends what was like growing up for you? And when did making music come into play?
Puffy L’z: Music was always around me growing up. I’m a first generation, Somali- Canadian kid from Regent Park and I’m the youngest of 9. So regardless of what I was doing, music was always around, whether on TV, the radio or in school. Music is a big part of the city. To be real, I grew up focused on playing ball. It wasn’t until I was around 19 or 20, that I started to go to the studio and record, and catch vibes with my bros.
RESPECT: Music is a remedy for kids everywhere, it helps channel their emotions into a form of art. Whether its pain or happiness. What does it mean to you?
Puffy L’z: Yeah music, and art in general, is a remedy for me as well. There is some stuff I’ve gone through, and when I write or rap it out, it helps channel my emotions. It helps me get shit off my chest, and clears up my mind.
RESPECT: Is there any positive message you’d like to share with your fans and youth that want to make music.
Puffy L’z: Yeah, just do your thing and stay focused, because there will always be people who will try to pull you down in a lot of ways. Air out the suckers! Stay positive and keep going harder. There’s going to be a lot of negativity, but you have to block that out.
RESPECT: Ok this is random but Name some of the Dos and Donts of a Studio Session.
Puffy L’z: Don’t bring negative energy or push the session off topic. Don’t play next music in the session. I don’t care who it is, don’t play some other shit. Don’t sleep in the studio. If you’re tired, it’s better you don’t come, because that energy can ruin the mood.
I like people to be busy in the studio and give me feedback when it adds to the record, but otherwise let me work with the engineer, and you stay busy. Play games, call a girl, do something, that’s how I’ll feel comfortable.
RESPECT: What are your five goals for 2019?
Puffy L’z: Drop my tape, tour, music and more music! Work on my brand. There are a lot of goals that I have outside of the music, but let this project drop first, and then I can work on achieving those.
Puffy L’z project, Take No L’z, is set to drop on July 19th. Make sure to pre-order it on all major platforms. The rapper also has his first headline show at Mod Club on July 30th for which you can purchase the tickets here.
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