Rapper ToBy discusses his debut album 'L'Esprit', his musical journey, & more with The DigiSpot.
Not too long ago, rapper ToBy made his debut on VannDigital with his single "Are We Ridin". Along with that single, he dropped his debut album 'L'Esprit' plus waxed poetic with us about said single and album plus some more. You can see what we got into and more below…
VannDigital: What's good famo?
ToBy: Yerrrrr what's good!
When did you decide music was the move for you?
I feel like a part of me always knew. I liked being the center of attention and clowning around when I was younger but I was always good with my words. When I started picking up instruments and eventually rapping and singing, seeing a different reaction from people other than just laughter really changed the game for me, I realized I was moving people and also getting shit off my chest at the same time. I'd say when I started in high school, I knew I wasn't gonna stop.
How did your recent single, "Are We Ridin", come about?
That was a vibe we cooked up back in 2017. I linked with the producer, Mateo, over SoundCloud and he hit me with a couple joints I ended up picking "Let It Go" and "Are We Ridin" out of. I kinda black out when I write so I can't say what the direct inclination was but I knew going into the session I wanted to snap on something and really flex as a rapper. It just so happened that it ended up adding a story element to the album I was putting together so I threw it on and it fit.
With Rob Garza (of Thievery Corporation) being an electronic music legend, how did you come in contact with him?
Rob works closely with my best friends and main producers smle. He was always pulling up to the studio and over time, we got to be friends. I went down to see him play a festival in Mexico and met the band, including Racquel who I ended up writing with. One thing led to another and we ended up working together.
So, tell us about your album 'L'Esprit'.
It's my introduction to the world through and through. I admire artists who aren't afraid to put themselves out there and show people who they are, what better way to do that then to show y'all where I come from and the people that helped make me who I am. It's a dedication to my late grandmother who always saw the best in me even when I was fucking up and spiraling emotionally. Definitely on some vulnerable subject matter but it's a look into how I operate and all the sounds and concepts I love.
What advice would you give upcoming artists?
I get this a lot, which is funny because I still feel like I'm coming up myself. I'd say keep going, there's gonna be days where you wanna quit or stop but you only ever hear about the people who pushed through those hard times. If you wanna be one of them, it comes with perseverance.
ToBy's 'L'Esprit' album is also available to stream and cop via all major digital service providers