Cozi the Artist (say it like Kah-zee) is putting on for the city of Dallas, with his smooth flow and rhythmic beats. His passion for music is not a new thing, but, as an artist, he just began releasing music a few months ago. Don’t get it twisted though, he has only been releasing music for a short time, but his developed creativity and style shines bright in all of his tracks. Cozi hit streaming platforms strong with his first track titled “Badd,” capturing listeners with his harmonic voice and catchy lyrics. He’s been non-stop since, releasing hits like his most recent tracks “Me and My Girlfriend” and “Percs.” After he hit 200k streams, I had to catch up with Cozi to talk about his music and goals as a rising artist.
When did you start writing music, and what are some of your goals as an artist?
I started at a young age, probably about nine years old, that I recorded my first single. But I didn’t start taking it real serious until a couple months ago. Dropped out of college pretty much and decided to run with it. Goals as an artist, I would say, just continue to put out the music that I want to put out, that I love, for as long as I can. In the music business, longevity is a big deal. It’s tough to do it, to consistently do it, so as of now, I’m trying to build a fanbase to where they’re loyal to my music. Anything I put out, as long as it’s good, they’re going to love it.
What is the music scene in Dallas like for rising artists?
I’ve heard things, but I can’t really say as much because it’s only been four or five months, and with COVID I haven’t been able to link with the Dallas scene as much as I’d like to. But from what I hear, it can be tough, but I think that’s anywhere, everybody’s trying to get it. Dallas is barely on the come-up, so we don’t have a lot, like a legitimate pipeline here where we got that one big person who’s just putting everybody on. I think everybody’s trying to get it at this point, and it may come off as they’re worried about themselves. But I don’t really think it’s like that. Most of my crowd is coming from out of state, and that’s mainly due to COVID. With the Internet, how it is now, I’m able to reach different states, and that’s where most of the buzz is coming from.
What made you decide to just start releasing your music?
That’s some crazy shit. I don’t know if you’re in tune with Twitch and all that.
But it started getting big, and I was following SuperStar O and Team Hitz, I don’t know if you know them. But Team Hitz, I followed him for a minute, but when COVID started, I got on my phone a little more and I started seeing that he was going live and listening to people’s music and stuff like that. So I hopped on and I submitted some music, and he was fucking with it, a lot of people were fucking with it, and it started to give me a little buzz. I had a song planned out already, ready to drop, but I was holding back on it because of everything that was going on, with George Floyd and the whole movement, it just wasn’t the right time to put out music. And at the last minute, I started getting all that buzz and I just let people know I didn’t do any promoting for this, but I know a lot of people want to hear my music because at the time I didn’t have anything out. So, it was a random drop that I did, but it was all because I hopped on his stream and I started to get followers from it.
Who are some of your influences?
Growing up, I was into a lot of the Tupac, NWA. I’m 22 now, but that was what my pops was listening to at the time. A lot of people in the late ’80s, early ’90s, that’s what they were into, so I grew up listening to a lot of that. But also, oldies, like ’50s and ’60s music. I know that’s weird, but, Sam Cooke, Temptations, Brenton Wood, Otis Redding, Smokey Robinson, Ray Charles, people like that. That’s where I get that artist side from, because at that time, you really had to have talent to be in the music industry. There wasn’t no auto-tune or the stuff that we have now.
Your track “Me and My Girlfriend” recently passed 200K streams, how does the hype feel and what are near future plans for your music?
Yeah, to be honest, that record right there, I had recorded it, I thought it was cool and shit, because I’m real big on Tupac. I got this 4-foot painting in my room of Tupac, I fuck with him heavy. And I showed it to my brother, and he was like, “Yeah, that shit’s fucking hard, you need to put that shit out.” I was like, “Nah.” My latest release is the one that I was really wanting to push, so I sent this one out on some, “Fuck it, I’ll just get it ready just in case.” When I got the mix back, from MixedByRican, the shit was crazy. He flipped the whole fucking song. So at that point, I knew like, “okay, yeah, I gotta run with this shit.” I uploaded it… Actually, I think I was promoting it like a month before I dropped it. And everybody was hitting on like, “You need to drop this shit as soon as possible, like now.” Ended up dropping it randomly, and then out of nowhere it blew up, but most of the feedback is good, and, I don’t know, this shit is crazy, I can’t really describe it.
The track was mixed and mastered by MixedbyRican, what was it like interacting with him and how did that interaction come about?
I met him through SuperStar O, too, so shoutout Team Hitz and SuperStar O. He gives out a lot of opportunities on his Twitch, and one day I asked him, “Do you have any engineers that you recommend?” And he put me on to MixedByRican. MixedByRican, he works with A Boogie, Riff Raff and all of them. So it was crazy. Whenever I talked to Rican, I was like, “O sent me over, maybe you can hook me up with something.” He was cool from the jump. And that record, I sent it to him, and he didn’t hit me back till like a month maybe. And like I’m telling you, whenever he got it back to me, I knew like, “Damn, this is why this shit took a month, because he really went in on it.”
Who is Cozi and what do you want to be known for as an artist?
I just want to be a staple in the industry, really. I know a lot of people say it, but I don’t just want to participate, I want to contribute. This is why I added the “artist” on there, because I want to be able to switch back and forth and just be versatile, but at the same time, really fit into what I’m doing, not on some flake shit, like, “Oh this is easy.” I really want to make music to where I can flip from hip-hop to rap, to trap, and all the fans, they’ll really love that shit, they’ll rock with it. You know what I mean?