Monday, October 18, 2021
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    Industry Veteran Chris Gotti is Revolutionizing Digital Distribution for Independent Artists


    Industry mogul Chris “Gotti” Lorenzo has influenced the careers of several industry heavy-hitters. He has been the catapult to long lasting success for Ashanti, his brother Irv Gotti, and several others. As Co-Founder and current Vice President of Murder Inc. records… Chris Gotti has disrupted both the music and technology spaces making top-tier executive decisions, backed by over a decade of accolades. 

    Now the industry guru is sharing a gold-mine of information with the ones who need it most, Independent artists. Add Ventures Music is a digital distribution company shaking the entrepreneurship space. The company has made it a mission to educate artists on owning their masters and intellectual property. Nonetheless, empowerment is at the forefront of this groundbreaking innovation. As he provides artists the tools to a long-lasting music career, Add Ventures Music will become a leading competitor unlike any other in its market.

    Our major point of differentiation is we TEACH independent artists how to “OWN” their music, likeness, and intellectual property IN PERPETUITY

    Chris Gotti began revolutionizing the digital arena in 2002 by consulting with Jeff Arnold, founder of WebMD, HowStuffWorks, Sharecare, and LidRock. These sessions would lead to the creation of Gotti’s tech-based company. In addition to providing the keys to monetization, he gives artists exclusive access to industry players such as himself. Digital marketing, radio, production, and more are provided to artists to skyrocket them to the next level. Keeping in mind this is on top of distributing artists music to major streaming platforms.

    For the past months Gotti has taken his company on tour being and example for the practices that he teaches. Above all, he is taking over cities like Birmingham and Memphis, stepping face-to-face with these artists, representing exactly the type of help they will receive with AVM.

    Watch him talk about the starting of Add Ventures Music and more now!


    [Register to Perform] LEADERSHIP MUSIC CONFERENCE [OCT 16]


    The “Leadership Music Conference” is bringing an music education segment to its platform. This conference is committed to providing access to a broad selection of resources to further artist career in the music industry. Our Network of music industry insiders enables us to offer artist the opportunity to understand the NEW AGE of the music industry. We provide you with direct access to our network, which consists of some of the most influential brands in the music business today.


    The event will consist of one on one meetings with A&Rs and Tour Managers who will critique music and provide artist feedback onsite (Option 2), a panel discussion and Q&A inclusive of active industry leaders and professionals who will provide real insight on the music industry. The finale will be the artist showcase where unsigned talent will perform live and given an opportunities to win quality prizes. This event is open to the public. Persons who are not performing are also welcomed to attend the panel discussion and showcase.

    Doors open at 3PM – The panel discussion 4PM-5PM [Speakers: Datwon Thomas, Rel Carter, Madina Milana, Vashon ” Rap ” Straws, Jamila Thomas, and Que Smith]- Showcase starts at 5PM [EST] / Each artist will have 5/6 Min. stage time. This showcase will be Judged by Rel Carter of Eqdistro/Roc Nation, Vashon ” Rap ” Straws of Republic Records, and Jeff Juin of  Warner Records.

    LOCATION: Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC) – 153-10 Jamaica Ave. Queens, NY 11432



    [OPTION 1] 

    The total Registration is $300 [Groups $400]

    You leave a $150 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / 5Min. Slot Time / 1 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / and Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    [OPTION 2]

    The total Registration is $600 [Groups $750]

    You leave a $300 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / One on One meeting with all labels (Before the show) / 6Min. Slot Time / 3 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / Pick the time you perform / Option to Sale or giveaway Merch / [PDF File] of Music Industry contacts / Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    [OPTION 3] Headliner Package

    The total Registration is $1000 [Best for indie Labels]

    You leave a $500 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / One on One meeting with all labels (Before the show) / 8Min. Slot Time / 6 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) – with a private section & a premium bottle of your choice [food is included for the artist] / Pick the time you perform, Open or Close-out the showcase / Option to Sale or giveaway Merch / [PDF File] of Music Industry contacts / Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    When you make your deposit make sure to upload a photo for your custom Flyer.



    Each artist that register to perform will receive a unique ticket code to give to their supporters. The artist will be paid 50% (Minus transfer fees) of each ticket sold through their code. [Artist must sale 35+ tickets to qualify for payout]





    The Sound Check Industry Showcase gives artist the opportunity to perform in front of a live audience which includes music executives from some of the best labels in NYC. The three best artist wins cash and meets with real industry executives at the record label.


    This showcase is a “Artist Competition” / Doors open at 6PM – Show starts at 7PM [EST] / Each artist will have 5/6 Min. stage time. This showcase will be Judged by Yaasiel “Success” Davis of Atlantic Records, Vashon ” Rap ” Straws of Republic Records, and Jeff Juin of  Warner Records.




    [OPTION 1]

    The total Registration is $300 [Groups $400]

    You leave a $150 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: General Artist Flyer / 5Min. Slot Time / 1 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / and Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    [OPTION 2]

    The total Registration is $600 [Groups $750]

    You leave a $300 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / One on One meeting with all labels (Before the show) / 6Min. Slot Time / 3 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / Pick the time you perform / Option to Sale or giveaway Merch / [PDF File] of Music Industry contacts / Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    When you make your deposit make sure to upload a photo for your custom Flyer.



    Each artist that register to perform will receive a unique ticket code to give to their supporters. The artist will be paid 50% (Minus transfer fees) of each ticket sold through their code. [Artist must sale 35+ tickets to qualify for payout]

    DMV Lyricist Smiff Delivers Bar Heavy Second Album “Flowers”


    On the way to the top it is expected that there will be times the credit deserved will not be the credit received…. there are living legends all over who haven’t received their respected flowers. But Virginia bred lyricist Smiff is planting his flowers early with the release of his second album “Flowers”. Smiff harnesses a flow and delivery otherwise not commonly found in mainstream HipHop. Sharp bars and real life draw listeners into a place of artistic perfection. After the release of his first  record “To Whom It May Concern” Smiff experienced traction that fueled the evolution of his career. His content accompanied by his delivery is a shift from what is currently found in Hip-Hop. But it is the refresh everyone needs, and a culmination of life lessons, observations, and an ode to how far Smiff has come.  With an elevating career it was only right for the artist to gift his fans a body of work that would serve as an honorable follow up to his first drop.

    Who is Smiff? And how did you come up with the name? 

    Smith is actually my last name, but it’s spelled the incorrect way, my last name, but it’s just how I pronounced it. You know what I’m saying? People kept saying like, “Bro, are you saying like it’s spelled S-M-I-F-F?” I’m like, “Nah, it’s just, it’s how it sounds when I say it, but it’s spelled the right way.” So that’s really how I just ran with it. A part of me… ‘Cause before Smiff, I had a bunch of other names that just was trash for real. So I was just thinking I wanted to be more genuine to who I am as a person,” which is how my music is too. I tell real life stories, things I’ve really been through. So kinda like how Nas did, his name is Nasir, so he shortened it down. So I just thought like, “What could I use as, really, J. Cole use his real name?” So, yeah.

    When did you start writing music? 

    When I first started writing music, I think, was probably eighth grade maybe. Before then, we was doing battle raps, rapping people or either write a rap in class, go to the lunch table, battle at lunch, battle in the hallways, shit like that. We started doing that at first, and then my man, by the name of Sails, he was recording in the eighth grade. He was like one of the first dudes I knew that had a studio at his house, and he was like, “Yo, come through.” So I pulled up and I was recording with him for at least a couple of years for a while to about 10th, 11th grade. But it was more so, kids just fooling around, just recording different. It wasn’t nothing serious. It’s like, “Oh, he got the studio. Let’s go pull up over Sails’ house and record.”

    What was the turning point for you then that made you really wanna start doing it? 

    When I really realized I was nice. When I really thought I was nice, and then I started really looking at the climate of music, I’m like, “Yeah, I could really do this.”

    Did you have a moment at an event or something, or did somebody tell you, somebody specifically tell you? How did you realize? 

    Just people telling me, and then just different people saying, “Yo, bro, I mess with the music.” But more recently, when I dropped my last project, To Whom It May Concern, when I dropped that project, I started getting a lot of real things happening that made me realize like, “Nah, you need to take this serious.” One, for example, was it was this random lady at my job, we knew each other, but we were really getting to know each other. And one day, she was just singing this song. And I’m like, “What are you singing? Stevie Wonder?” She was like, “Nah, this is not Stevie Wonder.”Because that’s a sample that’s in the song.

    She was like, “It’s this dude that was rapping that my homey put me on yesterday.” I’m like, “Alright, let me play you a song and you see if this the song, ’cause I think I might know the song you’re talking about.” So I played my song and she was like, “Bro, that’s the song.” I said, “That’s me.” And she was floored and like, “Yo, I think it’s dope. I had no idea.” Da-da-da-da. In another instance, I hopped in an Uber, pre-COVID, I hopped in an Uber headed home, and when I got in, the Uber driver was playing one of my songs. It’s like little things like that that’s been happening, that’s showing me like, “Something that I’m doing is connecting with people in a real way.” So it just helped me focus where I’m like, “Keep building, keep elevating.”

    I saw people were actually buying the physical digital album, which I feel like is kind of rare for a lot of new artists right now.

    Yeah, but man, so many… One dude Cash App’d me. He bought the album, and then he hit me up and was like, “Bro, this album’s worth more than $10.” I was like, “Bro, I appreciate it.” And I didn’t even say nothing after that. I said, “I appreciate it.” He was like, “Drop your Cash App.” And I just said, “Thank you for buying the album.” He was like, “Nah, but drop your Cash App.” And then he sent me $100 cash for the album, bro.

    Your content really touches on real-life and society and things that people need to hear. Your music is very for-the-people. what inspired you to really share those experiences and those truths through your music? 

    That’s a good question. You know what? I think I just recall back to when I fell in love with music and remember what it was about the music that I was falling in love with, that I connected with, and it was always real ass songs, that it’s like, “Damn, bro, even if I was 10 years old, I can’t relate to what he’s saying, but I know I can hear the genuineness in it and what the lyrics and how authentic it was.” And it just stuck with me growing up. I always try to gravitate towards something that I can feel. And so when it came to me making music, in my mind, everybody in life pretty much go through the same thing or some variation of it.

    Not everybody has an artistic expression where they could write something down, whether it be a poem or whether it be music in general, to express themselves. So who’s going to speak for those types of people who are going through this? That’s what I think about. Not everybody wanna turn up, and I love turn-up music. You feel me? But you can’t turn up 24 hours a day and sometimes you’re gonna have to sit with yourself. Sometimes you’re gonna have to really analyze the world and see what’s going on, you know what I’m saying, or a relationship that you might have with a female or your mom or whoever. I pull from, like, “Okay, let’s really touch on topics and subjects that the everyday person could touch… Relate to.

    Another reason, I’ve never really been a trendy person ’cause… I don’t know. I don’t know. I guess when I came up, for me, you never… I know this is different, but you never wanted to be in the same pair of shoes that somebody else had, you never wanted to be in the same clothes. People would take trips out of town to go get different shit. So when you pull up at school, you just wanted to stand out and not… I think that’s the best way to be, individuals. You know what I mean? Individualism.

    Talk to me about time and work that went into Flowers. I think I saw somewhere, it took two years almost, right? 

    I dropped To Whom It May Concern in 2018. And so the reason why it took me so long to drop Flowers is because I was constantly pushing that body of work. And someone told me, “If it’s good music, then just keep pushing it and something… It may catch. Some people have songs that’s two, three years old, and that’d be the one that blow them up.” So when it came to Flowers, like I said, I’ve been pushing To Whom It May Concern. So then in the midst of that kind of running its course and people saying like, “Yo, when are you gonna drop another project? When are you gonna drop another project?” I started picking up with Flowers.

    I started, I would say, I think like May of 2019. I was in Atlanta, actually. And one of my homeboys, Bravo, he lived down there. He’s from DC, but he was out in Atlanta. And that’s when we did Heaven’s Kids. And then from there, I just continued to write and listen to hundreds of beats. That’s another part that people don’t know. You listen to hundreds of beats, some of them is trash. You know what I’m saying? Some just don’t fit the project. So it really is a process. But yeah, cracking from May 19th to… I finished, I think, either December 20 or either maybe like January this year.

    Talk to me about the title and what the whole overall message behind the project was.

    With the title, when I thought about flowers, I just kept thinking about, “What do flowers mean to people?” You know what I’m saying? We give people flowers in celebration. We give people flowers in passing. You know what I’m saying? And then I also thought about just the terms of people knowing that they’re worth… They deserve flowers, but people not necessarily can recognize that to give you the flowers. So it’s like, so it’s many different meanings for me. But also, the rose from the concrete idea, I feel like as Black people, we’ve come from may not be… Maybe different environments, maybe harsher environments, but we still blossom into beautiful people. There’s beautiful experiences that come out of the struggling and tough times. So I feel like if you listen to this project, there’s gonna be something that’s on there that’s gonna connect with you in some different form, whether it’s the celebration, whether it’s the struggle, whether it’s the environment that caused the rose from the concrete situation.

    Let’s get into who helped you on the project? Producers? Who was involved? 

    So most of the beats came from BeatStars. I just would go on there and listen to them and buy them. But one dude on there, number two, Heaven’s Kids, Dar’rell Banks, he’s a Virginia producer. So I met him and worked with him on my last project, found him on SoundCloud, ended up DMing him on Twitter. He lived in Manassas, Virginia at the time. So I just drove out there and met him face-to-face, and told him what I was trying to do, and bro just been sending me beats ever since then. And that was like three years ago, maybe four years ago.

    He’s tough, he’s a real good dude. Who else is on there? Let’s see, Othellobeats. All of these people… Yeah, really just BeatStars. I went on there and found beats that I thought was dope. Oh and one other dude, D.Woo, who produced What Love Is. So I got a guy by the name of Ka’ree, who designs a lot of my merch and other little things for me. He’s real dope. He does a playlist where he just randomly puts different artists or different producers on. And I was listening to one of his producers, and I’m like, “Yo, who is this? This dude is fire.” And he was like, “That’s D.Woo.” So he connected us with him. I ended up buying a beat from him. And it turns out that later on, D.Woo went on to produced “Sue Me” for Wale off his new project.

    What influence do you as an artist want to have on the world with your music? 

    My influence, I just want people to be themselves. Know that it’s okay to be you. Whatever it is that’s about you, it’s okay. Don’t let nobody shame you. Don’t let nobody tell you or steer you into doing something else, and also to really analyze what’s going on around you. Really be aware of what’s happening, how you feel in this particular moment. That’s what I would want my influence to be as an artist, someone that’s gonna make you like, “Okay, yeah, let me be aware of what’s going on. Let me be comfortable in my skin, who I am.”

    Check out Flowers on all platforms now!



    The Sound Check Industry Showcase gives artist the opportunity to perform in front of a live audience which includes music executives from some of the best labels in NYC. The three best artist wins cash and meets with real industry executives at the record label.


    This showcase is a “Artist Competition” / Show starts at 5PM [EST] / Each artist will have 5/6 Min. stage time. This showcase will be Judged by  Vashon ” Rap ” Straws of Republic Records, Jeff Juin of Warner Records, and Que Smith of 920 Agency Group





    The total Registration is $300 [Groups $400]


    You leave a $150 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / 5Min. Slot Time / 1 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / and Chance to win the Grand Prize.


    The total Registration is $600 [Groups $750]

    You leave a $300 deposit to hold your slot, and You pay the remaining balance (on/by) the day of the showcase.

    INCLUDES: Custom Artist Flyer / One on One meeting with all three labels (Before the show) / 6Min. Slot Time / 3 Free Ticket (the artist doesn’t pay to enter the venue) / private section / Pick the time you perform / Sale or giveaway merch / Chance to win the Grand Prize.

    When you make your deposit make sure to upload a photo for your custom Flyer.



    Each artist that register to perform will receive a unique ticket code to give to their supporters. The artist will be paid 100% (Minus transfer fees) of each ticket sold through their code. [Artist must sale 30+ tickets to qualify for payout]


    Emerging rapper Kamil Jones is shifting energies with new album “Big Choze”


    He Rock. He Roll. He Rap. He’s Choze! Kamil Jones otherwise known as “the chosen one” is a rising rapper based in the ATL.  His flow and style mixes the old school with the new, gifting listeners a whole new vibe. As an emerging artist he sports a hustle and grind supporting of his growing career. During a short stint in the military, Kamil would keep the barracks lit with his energy and lyrics. Realizing that the strict environment was not a place for him to attempt his rise in the industry… he finished out his time then went full speed into his music. Consistency is key and Kamil has been steadily releasing new tracks and gaining momentum.His most recent release was an 8 track project titled “Big Choze”. With songs like “Chakra Glow,” “Sunflower Seeds” and “Hi Tec,” the artist is using beats and bars to shift the energies of his listeners.

    When did you start making music?

    It was a long time ago. Just like make… As far as just making, it was a long time ago. I wanna say, we started in seventh grade, six, seventh grade, me and my friends used to freestyle. We used to just freestyle in class, and that’s how it really always starts. Freestyle in class, record some songs on your phone, show your friends. We even played it in our class for our teacher, she laughed at it. I’m from Danielsville, Georgia which is real country.

    They don’t really hear a lot of hip-hop and stuff. But even back then, I will say we was rapping pretty decent, but it’s just us being us. It didn’t really move people but we just kept going.

    Since hiphop wasn’t really common where you grew up, how was that? 

    It’s interesting because at first, as I kept going, it’s like everybody know there’s a shift in the culture. There’s always been a shift, every so often there’s a shift in the culture. So by the time we got to high school, it was like people started feeling it more, but in middle school, it was just like a gimmick. Even in high school, there was people that laughed, just laughed like “Why ya’ll wanna rap?” And I’m just like, “Well why do half of y’all wanna do lashes and nails and y’all wanna be barbers?”

    There’s always somebody hating.

    There’s always somebody hating. And then even one of my buddies, the dude who I consistently make music with, they used to talk a whole bunch about him and stuff. And just as we kept going, it was just, you realize you don’t care because the local people are always gonna hate. The people that know you are always gonna hate, but it’s like when you reach out and you continue and you start putting yourself on SoundCloud, you get reactions from people that don’t know you personally. So they don’t try to paint a picture of you, so it just became more… It came easier, honestly. Being confident in your music and stuff. It came way easier.

    What are some of the people that inspire you, musically? 

    Casey Veggies, Dom Kennedy, others like… If you know all them 2012, all those 2012 West Coast rappers like… Really, that’s it, like who else? Skim, I don’t know if you know if you know Skim.

    What are some of the goals that you have for yourself as an artist? 

    Honestly, at first, I guess when we first started, everybody kinda imagines themselves in the lights and stuff, but as you continue and you learn more about the business, my biggest goal really is just to like make music well enough, and I guess be so successful in my own standard, in my own lane that I can just pay… At least pay my rent and a car note with it, you know what I’m saying? Just to be able to survive off of it because it’s like more so just… I do want like, you know, everybody wants to go as far as they can go, but right now it’s just like my main goal right now is to be able to get that sustainability so I can not have to… Wait till 5 o’clock to do an interview, you know what I’m saying? So I can have free times in my hand, so I guess time freedom is the biggest goal. That’s how it really is.

    In your bio, it says that you are chosen. You have a lot of spiritual stuff going on with your brand. So talk to me about where that comes from and why you choose to do that?

    It’s like the triple 4s, like the triple 4s, every time you see like 444, is like the the number of manifestation and stuff. So like to say I’m the chosen one, I ain’t trying to say it in a cocky way, like, “I’m the chosen one.” It’s more so just like, everybody can be chosen, you could be chosen at anything that you wanna do if you wanna be chosen, you know what I’m saying, so it’s just… It’s just all about manifestation, you are chosen. If you say you’re chosen, then you’re gonna make it in whatever you’re doing, that’s the biggest goal behind the brand it’s the message I try to push though. That if you put a whole bunch of hours into a craft, I don’t care if you suck at it, if you put a bunch of hours into a craft, you know what I’m saying, somebody’s gonna vibe with it. It’s gonna turn into something, ’cause I put this like this, in my opinion, Riff-Raff is not that good. But Riff-Raff put the hours in, you know what I’m saying, look at him.

    Who are some of the people that support you right now and do they make music as well? 

    I got a handful of people. My friend Moe Da Don, her Instagram is backinthefuture, she’s a photographer. Honestly, sometimes she does a lot of candid photography that she’ll go and edit up, just to make sure I have content to push out all the time. I got my boy Cody, he shoots videos. Shoots real good videos. Nala London, LondonMakesBeats, Tez, my boy Tez, always has my back. It’s like just really, it’s a friend group, Kali, you know what I’m saying, my homeboy Anaias, he always taps in, just hits me. Sometimes he’ll text me and just quote a lyric and just let me know that he’s still out here listening or like if I drop something, he’ll quote a lyric from it to let me know that, you know, he is still out here supporting and watching stuff.

    What is one thing that you would want everybody to know about who you are as an artist? 

    I’m somebody I’m not gonna cap my rap. I’m not gonna sit here and lie about stuff, everything I rap about is me. I rap about situations where I’ve been broke, you know what I’m saying? So like, you rap about situations where you ain’t… Where like, I only had a dollar in my bank account, you know what I’m saying? I’ll never be ashamed to rap about stuff like that, just being humble and not trying to always glamorize, I don’t like to glamorize the flashy lifestyle and stuff, even though it would be nice, but I don’t wanna glamorize it too much because it’s just like, I guess, chasing money. When you chase money based off of your goals, like if your goal is to be the best painter in the world, but you’re doing it because you want money, your art’s not gonna be genuine no more, you know what I’m saying? It’s gonna be money-driven. So if your money is, if you’re hustle is money-driven, it’s cool to be money-driven, but if it’s too money-driven, it’s just always gonna… It’s gonna backfire, it’s gonna hurt worse whenever you have failures, you know what I’m saying? If you expect to have a million dollars tomorrow, it’s gonna hurt worse when you don’t get it. When you expect to have just like some people appreciate your art, whether it be three people or 300, 3000 or whatever. If you have that… That intention is just basically pull people in to love who you are and get to know who you are and just appreciate you as a person, and appreciate your craft, and you just start appreciating your craft and be genuine to it, then you’ll be okay, you know what I’m saying? 

    Stream “Big Choze” everywhere and check out Kamil’s visual for his track “Sunflower Seeds” now!

    Wayve putting on for Virginia with Melodicism and Grace


    Virginia bread artist Wayve is captivating listers with his harmonic flow. He stared off 2021 with the release of his single “Uno”, gifting listeners smooth vibes. The track served as a follow up to his debut album “Self Discovered” which released mid 2020. As he continuities to excel, the artist has caught the attentions of fans and influencers across the country. He is an artist and college student putting in the work to nurture his flourishing music career. While COVID put a wedge between shows he had lined up, he recently performed for DMV ReVamped, hosted by The Clout Cloud, Heir Wave Music Group, and Refresh Music Group. Wayve graced the virtual audience with his smooth flow and catchy lyrics. I had the opportunity of catching up with Wayve to talk about his career to this point, and what’s in store for the future!

    When did you first start writing music? 

    I first started writing music when I was probably 16 or 17. I started with my cousin. We would just record music in his like closet type, and do little stuff like that to start out. And then he kinda got me introduced to it when I was probably in 11th grade or 10th grade, with me and my other cousin.

    Is that when you started taking it seriously? 

    No, I didn’t take it seriously until 2019, summer. I mean, I was dropping stuff on SoundCloud, just for… You know? But I feel like 2019 summer was when I first started doing music videos and stuff.

    What changed that made you decide to really go hard for it? 

    I feel like for real, it’s ’cause I started getting… I started noticing the progress. I feel like when I first started out, it was… You know, my cousin was telling me from the very beginning that I was good. He saw that I was talented, but I feel like I wasn’t taking it serious, like I said at first. But 2019, I did, I started doing the videos and… I started doing videos, started really paying for studio time and that was like, “Alright,” you know? 

    Talk to me about your style a little bit and how did you become Wayve?

     Well, I got the name because my name, Wayne… And I was with some friends and we were just thinking like, “What could your artist name be?” And then she was like, “Well, your flow kinda like melodic. You kinda got some wave-y type vibes to you.” So she was like, “Maybe you should just call yourself Wave.” But I feel like me as an artist, I feel like I make real melodic music, like singing type, but rap at the same time.

    Who are some of your inspirations?

    Drake. Drake is like a big inspiration for me, just because he touch every genre of music. I feel like I want to get to a point in my career to where I could make like a Latin song, or make an alternative type song, because I feel like I appreciate all type of music, for real.

    What are some of the other types of music that you’re into?

    To be honest, I like everything, but I listen to classical music, piano music. I do listen to pop, anything that sounds good to me, for the most part, I like. But yeah, I grew up playing the violin and stuff, so I’ll say the biggest thing that’s outside of regular hip-hop, rap, would be classical music, like listening to piano, Bach, Beethoven type. I mean, I don’t do it that often, but if I wanna chill, calm down, I feel like I get in my zone with that.

    Talk to me about the two of your tracks that ended up getting picked up by the YouTuber, Tommy Craze? That was right when you started releasing too!

    Yeah, that was like, when I started releasing. He actually worked with us, or picked up one of my homies named Troy the Rapper, he picked up him and his brother’s video. He was like, “Dang,” and he kind of… He followed Troy and we got kind of in tune with him, and then I dropped a song called Luxury two months after… No, first we made a song called Die a Legend, I made that with Troy, that was not… That was last January. And then he posted that on his page and then he got familiar with me, so when I dropped Luxury, he ended up posting that, and then Switch Lanes too.

    How did you end up getting linked up with Ilias? And what is your relationship like, with him as your manager? 

    I really don’t even know how I met Ilias, to be honest. But actually, I think I just got familiar with The Clout Cloud and then I met him and I met Joe, we have been cool for a few years, and then as a recent, he just was like, “Bro, let’s really like lock in, I can manage you,” type. I mean, I’ve never had a manager before this. I’m used to being self-managed, very independent. But yeah, I got tuned in with Ilias, he… Shout-out to Ilias, ’cause he real tuned in… A lot of stuff… He did do a lot of stuff behind the scenes. So, I felt like that would be really beneficial for me, but linking up with him… Because he’s so in tune with everybody, he’s so business-minded, and I feel like that was good for me because managing myself, I know how I wanna be managed, and I know what I expect out of a manager. I feel like linking up with him was definitely a good move.

    Talk to me about the VA story. That just dropped right? With Pedro and another artist.

    Yeah, Pedro and Why Not Deuce. Yeah, shout out to both of them. I’m glad I got on the song with both of them. It was long overdue with me and Pedro, but I met Deuce probably two, three months before we made that song and I was like, “Oh, this dude fire.” I was trying to link up with him. And then when Joe and Pedro had sent me the track, they was like, “Bro, I want you on this.” They sent it to me, I did my part, then I was like, “Yo, we gonna put Deuce on this too.” So when that happened, I’m like, “Alright, yeah, this definitely ’bout to be a hit,” ’cause when he first sent me the song, I was like, “Dang, this definitely like a vibe, I wanna do my thing on it.”

    Visual shot by Infamou$ G

    How has it been for you as an artist, especially just kinda getting into it and releasing music during the pandemic? 

    I feel like that the pandemic kinda screwed up a lot of stuff because performing is a big type thing to gain exposure, obviously, and gain fans and stuff and… I was in school, I go to UVA and February, January, last year, I was doing a lot of performances for the events we had here at school. And I had three more like that coming March. We had went home for spring break, and I was supposed to come back and do… I had three things lined up to do. I don’t know what I could have done over summer or later last year, but I definitely feel like it affected it, but I was dropping… I was still dropping music, dropped the EP, I dropped my album, and I feel like both of those have been doing well.

    So how do you manage too, balancing the music and the schoolwork?

    It takes up a lot of time ’cause both of them full-time things. I’m a full-time student, but I’m also trying to be a full-time artist at the same time. So times that I do get free time, I try to record, but then sometimes I’m like, “Dang, I’m taking away from my studying, I need to be studying, I need to be doing work.” So it’s definitely hard trying to manage both of them, but I’ve been managing to get by, so might get by, do well in both, I feel like.

    What are you working on right now, music-wise? 

    I dropped an album in October, so these last three months I’ve just been hammering videos, doing photo shoots, trying to create outside of just making music. I wanna push my album a little bit more, so I’ve been just… Like I said, I’ve just been making videos, just trying to create good quality content to put out in front of people to build my image. But I still record, I still have unreleased stuff. I’m just not dropping as much right now because I’m trying to build my image and push the music that I did before because it’s a whole lot of saturation as far as the music industry. So I wanna be able to make sure that the stuff that I’ve released already it’s gonna get heard before I give out more of myself type.

    What do you feel like you as an artist offers the industry that’s different than what’s out there right now? 

    I feel like I have a genuine appreciation for music. Like I said before, I grew up playing the violin, I started in sixth grade, I finished when I was… I stopped playing my senior year and I feel like that created my melodic sound, singing, and then I also wrote poetry, so I combined both of those to create my sound. But as far as the saturation part, I just feel like it’s a whole lot of people that’s just doing music for… To say they doing music or influencers who got a platform, and they’re like, “Oh, I can make music off of this,” but they don’t… Never appreciated music, they just dropping it to make money off of it. And I feel like I’ve been doing… Consistently making music for years now, and I get paid for my music, but it’s not… You know what I’m saying? 

    I just really enjoy making music, I enjoy the process of making music, I enjoy creating with people. So I feel like it’s a lot of, right now at least, people just dropping, dropping, dropping, or random people who never made music before just making it because it’s like, “Oh, this is just an opportunity to get by.”

    Eli Manna Releases Powerful New Album “Music Is Color”


    Florida-based artist Eli Manna is bringing some soul back to Hip-Hop. He stands out from the masses with his ability to sing in the capacity of a choir and formulate bars that cut like a knife. His journey through music has faced him with some of his biggest blessings and challenges so far. Following the release of his album “Rookie 2 King,” Eli Manna began to earn label attention. As his success ensues, he continues to release tracks representative of his growth.

    Music Is Color is a testament to every experience and emotion surrounding his music. 

    “This album is really a personal project for me. I was at the lowest point in my life while making this. Dealing with family issues as well as suffering from medical issues, this album is the result of me pushing myself past all obstacles.”

    “Music is Color,” introduces listeners to a wealth of soul and creativity that may otherwise not be missing in mainstream Hip-Hop. It leads into 8 other tracks featuring confident and witty bars. 4 other artists were also featured on the project. His girlfriend Ramiah, brother, and close friends Dae’Shawn, Zay Sever, and Khamarun, added a colorful range of vocals and bars to the albums opening and “Soul Food Freestyle.”

    From RnB style tracks like “SouthSide,” to lyrically dense tracks like “Space Jam,” Music is Color is not just a record. It is a lyrical painting of his life experiences up to the moment of the release. On all platforms now, Eli Manna created a record that provides more than sharp bars and catchy hooks. He gifted an album of motivation and a testament to the future he holds. 

    The Clout Cloud takes over Twitch with Pusha T’s label and Refresh Music Group


    Virtual shows have become a new innovation within the industry. Nonetheless giving fans the option to watch artists perform from the comfort of their own home. Platforms like Twitch have become third-party concert venues broadcasting shows to fans.

    The Clout Cloud wanted to showcase the talent that has come out of DC, Maryland, and Virginia… best known as the DMV. They teamed up with Refresh Music Group and Push T’s label Heir Wave Music Group to takeover twitch for one night. 13 artists took to the stage from Songbyrd Music House & Record Cafe in Washington DC.  Specifically highlighting the talent bursting from the DMV, the show featured rising and established artists from across the DMV.

    Headliners included Maryland’s own Q Da Fool and Shordie Shordie. The two performed some of their hits that have been making a wave in the industry. The virtual crowd heard from several others including Bandhunta Izzy, 3OhBlack, Fe_Lie The God, and Kahri 1K. DJ Hypeee handled music curation for the show and kept computers and cell phones lit across the country.


    The show was opened by rising artist Wayve who recently released his first album. He was recently featured with WhyNotDuce on a track titled “VA Story” by PaidDro. The three took to the stage together to deliver a boastful performance highlighting the talent the lives in Virginia. In addition to the heavy hitting male artists who performed 2 female artists took to the stage as well. Shaolinn delivered soulful sounds to mellow out the hype followed by Almira Zaky who brought out her dancers to perform her debut single titled “Miss Me.

    After the pandemic changing the way fans consume live music… The Clout Cloud, Heir Wave, and Refresh Music have set the bar high for virtual performances with DMV REVAMPED!

    Eleanor Kingston releases highly anticipated EP “Great Kind of Madness, Pt.1”


    She’s the perfect amount of darkness and light rolled into one. The growing star best known as Eleanor Kingston possess a raw and melodious voice. Based in La, her style and creativity exemplify her ability to find light in any amount of darkness. Eleanor’s lyrics are intensely relatable and when accompanied by her vocals, the hits are endless for her. Eleanor’s visuals are extended stories of what she writes in her music.

    I like to twist and turn the concepts of my songs and make them a different story that even more people can relate to or get behind in the visuals.

    The artist recently gifted her growing fan base a new EP. The 4 song record titled “Great Kind of Madness, Pt.1,” is a recollection of a time when she had nothing, but her strength and grind have brought her to a higher place, and this project is her tribute. I had the opportunity of catching up with Eleanor to talk about her release and everything that makes her the artist that she is!

     When did you start writing music?

     I started making music… Okay, it’s kind of a funny journey. I think it’s similar to Ariana Grande’s story a little bit, where she really… She started in acting, obviously was hugely successful, and then she was always like, “Whoa, I love singing.” I really just want to be a singer, I know that, but I’m getting all these acting gigs and it’s happening really fast and I’m kind of in that space more. I actually started when I was really, really young, going to acting camp since elementary school in Los Angeles. because I always knew I wanted to be there. I would do casting calls and had an agent in LA. And all of that. And then I ended up going to a boarding high school in Connecticut. And there was not the best experience for me. It was very rigorous academics. I didn’t love the drama scene there. I didn’t really fit in, I felt like it was kind of… The directors weren’t necessarily on my side, I wasn’t really finding my place and it was in the middle of nowhere. It wasn’t like I could go out and act on the side because the academics were so rigorous and we had five hours of homework every single night that you couldn’t just leave on a jet to LA and kind of come back when you wanted to. I had to stop acting for a bit, and it ended up being kind of the best thing for me because in the acting world, it’s very… There’s so much pressure. There’s pressure in the singing world, but I feel like I’m more in control. And my main thing in life is control. I want to be able to have a voice in what I’m doing and who… What I’m coming off as to the general public. I started just singing kind of to numb the pain because acting wasn’t going right. I was a huge volleyball player, that wasn’t really going right. I didn’t have too many friends at my school in… In Connecticut. I felt super out of place. Just kid on financial aid, super rich school,  I just didn’t really fit in. And I kind of ended up going into the music wing, they had a phenomenal music program. And I was able to just belt out my feelings, and it started with a lot of covers. And then I started writing poetry because I had a phenomenal poetry teacher in high school, and she really pushed me to start writing free verse. And from that I was just like, “Whoa, I really love singing, I really love poetry. Why don’t I just try to combine these two. I already have the footing in LA, I already kind to know how to navigate that scene, why don’t I just start kind to shifting my focus to something that I love doing more. I’m able to get on my emotion.” It really just started from mental health. Just feeling in a really dark place and feeling like maybe no one cared, maybe the people around me didn’t want to hear it, maybe I was just venting my feelings to people who didn’t actually care about me personally. When I started releasing music just off a whim, I’m very glad I Did because I feel like in these past few years, there’s so much more availability for… With social media for you to get your music out and heard. Even when I had no fan base, I ended up getting those songs to 80,000 streams and it was all just organic fan traction who cared about what I had to say and who felt understood. Yeah, that’s kind of a bit about how I started. It’s a very long-winded answer, but it’s very special to me.

    What really inspired you to release the first song? And what gave you the confidence to really be super raw and open with the world?

     I guess for the first part of your question, as far as what made you release that first song. I think a lot of my music is rooted in boys. And it’s not generic like, Oh, I was broken up with, kind of stuff. I’ve gone through a lot of stuff at a very young age, that my mom is like, “Woah. That didn’t happen to me till I was like 30,” as far as being the other woman at 16 years old and just weird stuff, being taken advantage of by much older men and just situations that I knew weren’t okay, but I also knew if they were happening to me, they were happening to so many people, and it was deeper than a break-up song of like, Oh my God, I’m so sad because you chose another girl. It was like, What the hell? These things are real. This is really real content. And I felt confident to put that out. The first three songs were about my situations with guys that weren’t acceptable at all, and I felt comfortable putting them out and confident because I knew I was actually sharing something that was important to the broader scope of female empowerment and what we have to go through on a larger scale, and it was deeper than just me. So even if I’ll be the face of it, of my music, my music’s deeper than even who I am as an individual, if that makes any sense. That’s just kind of how I found the confidence. It was more just innate because I knew it was for a broader good than writing a song about a club and saying like, I’m confident because I’m the shit.

     Let’s go into Great Kind of Madness, Part One. How did that come about?

     So Great Kind of Madness, Part One happened when I had just kind of gotten out of the high school situation. I started those three songs that I came out when I was in high school, I made at Paramount Recording Studios in LA, and those were big-budget situations, but the sound quality to me wasn’t there, even though the money was being put in, because I was fortunate enough to have that with my first couple songs. I know a lot of artists when they start out, all they have is themselves and a mic, and I know that I was fortunate to start off at that point where people from Paramount did care and they wanted to help. But to me, the sound quality that I was hearing from Billie Eilish who was blowing up at the same time in her bedroom with her brother was so… That was why I wanted to make music. I was like, You are revolutionary. You’re taking all of this money that people feel like they have to spend at a proper recording studio so that they can only put out one song every six months so that it’s top quality, and you’re saying like, Let me just use my brother who’s super talented and use my voice, which is amazing, and then make something dope. When I moved out to LA, that was really what I craved to find. And in that period of time, my producer from Paramount, because I was broke, dead broke at the time, moved out to LA at 18 with nothing, fortunate enough to have my mom helping with rent and stuff. He said, “I don’t think this project is for me.” And whether that was genre or financial or whatever it was, I felt super stuck because I came out to LA, got super sick that summer, and then just… Couldn’t get out of bed sick, couldn’t find a job, just was in a horrible situation with a guy I had just met in LA and got attached to, and he was much older, and it was just messy, messy, messy. And that’s actually what Dedicated to You is about, it’s that summer. And a lot of Great Kind of Madness, the reason I talk about that summer right now is because that summer was when I wrote these songs. Even though it was so long ago, it was two summers ago, the emotions I felt then when I had nothing are what I really wanted to put out this year when I feel so fortunate and blessed, but I still want to pay homage to that time. I had a girlfriend, a good friend of mine, and she had this guy come over and she invited me over to meet him and he was just new to LA too, and he was like, “Yeah, I’m a producer, but I don’t really have much behind my belt, but I love to do production.” And I was like, “Dope. That’s what I’m looking for. That is what I want. You are the type of person I want. Let’s just try it.” And he took one of the demos I had made with a different guitar player or demo producer kind of vibe, he took that song, and when I heard his version, I literally started crying because it was the most amazing art that I had ever heard in my life, and I knew from that moment on, he was the producer that I needed to make every single project with, and I fully believe that in my heart, and I’m fortunate enough to call him my best friend right now. But it started just two kids with a vision, to be completely honest, who moved out to LA to do one thing and weren’t necessarily really getting those gigs, and then just put our brains together and said like, “Okay, dope. We don’t need to work with the world’s most renowned producer, and you don’t need to be in search of making your first song with Ariana Grande. Let’s start from the ground up.”

    That’s how it started, and he became my co-writer, producer, mix engineer. He does all of it. My music is literally him, that’s what I always say. It’s very much like our child. That’s what we make together. It’s not just me behind it, and I’m super proud of that because, yeah, every single song is him and I, and we also have another phenomenal producer named Kit who stepped in to help on some of the records as well, but it mainly just is the two-person collaborative team. And then as far as the visual side goes, I… We had been creating and fostering these records for so long, and I had basically just looked like an Instagram influencer who was just posting random pics of me and selfies, and I was like, “I need people to know I’m an artist,” and that doesn’t just mean posting pictures of me in the studio. That means full-fledge, How am I going to present this art once I want to put it out because I went on a year-long hiatus when everyone was like, “Eleanor, I thought you didn’t go to college to make music. What are you doing?” And I was like, “You know what? I need to come back and show what I’ve been doing.” So literally during Coronavirus when I was alone again in Los Angeles, unable to leave my apartment, and I didn’t know many people in LA at that point, and just literally, it was just me in my head that whole time in my apartment alone.

    Talk to me about your team and what role they have played in your success?

     Part of it is, how did I take them and put them into a business position? And then on the other hand it’s like, how the hell did they take me and put me into one? I think it’s just both parties really worked together to make something amazing. I’m a business woman first, and I think that’s what people don’t understand about music sometimes is it’s like, you can have the talent, but talent and the music part of it is 20% of the gig. If you don’t have the other 80% where you are hustling your ass off learning music business, and you’re figuring out e-commerce, and you’re figuring out how to run ads, and you’re saying, “What are people grappling with? Why is this artist blowing up? It’s because of this. Okay, I need to figure out a way to do something like that.” It’s the business, because I hear so many independent artists every day who, they’ll say, “Oh, I want to join your record label. Can you sign me?” Or whatever it is, and their music’s amazing, but the other part of that is the branding and what numbers do you have because you work to get there. I definitely will always say that the marketing side of it for me, and the business side of it for me, is the most important. I will never put someone on my team and say, “Okay, here’s this much money upfront, peace out.” It’s more, “How can we work together to make this sustainable?” I was fortunate enough to be offered a record label contract in that first year of making music, literally before I had even released a song coming out of high school, I was presented with a record label contract. So that was dope because it kind of bought us some time to figure out how to do it ourselves, because the goal for me, I own a record label with my brother, I make music. The goal for me is to do what Russ did, where it’s like, “How can we expand and make it so that I’m making a good living without someone else being in control of my career?” And I know producers who signed to record labels, they get taken advantage of and paid little to none. Or makeup artists who are working gig to gig, get paid little to none. And I was like, “Okay, you guys are still talented, if I figure out a way myself to market this music to the top, you aren’t going to deal with record label percentages, you’re going deal with my percentages, and because you’re my best friend, those percentages are going to be a lot higher.” So that’s kind of just like how I did it and how I figured it out. Obviously on the business side too, that’s not just me being smart and figuring it out, it’s so many people that coached me along the way, so many mentors, including my brother, who stepped in and said, “We should try this.” And then a mentor who came in and said, “Okay, this is how I do this.” And all of those things made me such a better marketer, made me such a better business woman, and also just heightened my music craft, because I was like, “Whoa, if I’m sitting behind a computer for legitimately 13 hours a day just focus on marketing, then this better be the best music anyone’s ever heard. And this better be worth it.” So it also helps your creative flow as well.

     You and Buppy are like the ultimate brother and sister duo especially in music. Do you have any other siblings?

    We do. We do. I’m super happy that you asked about that, because they are equally as amazing. So we have an older brother who is graduating this June from Stanford University, completing both his masters and his undergraduate degree in four years, for sustainability and just… He’s literally the epitome of my best friend. He’s such an adventurer’s soul. He’s so intelligent, the smartest person I’ve ever come to know, but he also knows that the main thing he wants to be known for is fun in his life, which keeps me grounded, because I’m such a workaholic and such a Capricorn and all this stuff. Where he’s like, “If we’re not going out and rock climbing today or surfing today or hiking today, why are we living? And so, he pushes me to that extent. Also, our younger brother right now, is kind of training for the Olympics. He took the Park City, Utah route. He’s 13, but he’s already top of his age group in Slope style skiing, so he’s up the mountain right now, he wakes up at 7:00 AM every morning, comes home at 4:00 PM He does online school, so that he can be a skier primarily during the winter and kind of work throughout the summer as well. So, yeah, no, I mean, I would say out of our family members, I’m least proud of myself, because I’m so proud of all of them.

    What is one of the biggest changes that you’ve seen in yourself as an artist up to this point in your career? 

     As an artist, I’ve changed so much as a person, and I think that that shows in your artistry. I guess for me, when I first started, as far as artistry goes, I was so… When I was young, it was the Katy Perry and the Ariana Grande and the Fergie, and all of these phenomenal pop women, and I was so rooted in pop. Those first few songs. The first one is completely alternative, but I also didn’t have a lot of say in how that record was made, but that’s another story. All of the records that I’d made to my name were pop and just very pop-focused, and how I grew as an artist was recognizing I love Frank Ocean and I love Mac Miller, and I love the alternative energy and I love UK rap, and I love rock. I just want to be as diverse of an artist as I can, while also recognizing I love pop, it’s my favorite genre and it will always be my favorite genre, and I want to make music that I want to listen to. But also, just that these other genres do come into play, and I want to experiment. And my producer is one of the most talented people on the face of the earth, so I don’t want to put him into a pop box either. So yeah, I think that’s the main way I’ve grown, as far as sonically, is just recognizing that you can put in a lot of genres and different alternative elements and still succeed.

    What is your favorite song from the EP and why?

    I would say “Pink Things” is definitely my favorite song. That’s because it’s… “Pink Things” is the song that we wrote in August, so it’s the most recent song that I’ve written that we also created in full. And that song is about so many things, it’s about being tomboy and girly-girl and how that’s okay. It’s about how, if you love pink, and you love makeup and you love dressing up, and you love all of these things that are seen girly and feminine, putting people down for that only makes us stronger and only makes us want to do it more. So, you’re not really succeeding in putting a woman down when you say a negative comment in any way. And then, it’s also just about my dark fantasy. When people say, “Well, I really like girly things and tomboy things,” and I’m taking my own spin on that to say… The verse lyrics are, “I cut off half my nail last night, wrote your name in my burn book, said goodbye, wore my heels to the park and cried in front of a family of five.” So many of those things are girly, where it’s like, “Okay, if you’re wearing heels, you’re feminine,” and then it’s like, “But then you’re also going to the park and crying in front of people,” and that might be a little frowned upon as a girl, but to me, I’m like, “I don’t care.” Then, in the pre, it’s like, “Embarrassing, you think girls fixate on pink things, boys and rings, but here’s the thing, I’m obsessed with dark things, empty rooms, as long as it’s not one with you.” So, it was kind of saying, like, “I’ve seen so many times, through growing up… ” There was a really long period of time with the Kardashian era and whatever, that everyone just… All these rappers and these people wanted a trophy wife, and I was like, “I never, ever want to be a trophy wife.” Yeah, I want to dress up and feel beautiful for myself, and wear pink and all these things, but I’m going to be the breadwinner. Sorry about that. I have a dark side of me too, and if I’m upset one night, it’s not because I’m on my period. No, I’m just upset and I’m sad, I’m in a darker mood, and that’s fine, and that’s also how women are as well. So, it’s not just like you can put us into this one box. And it’s so funny, because I’ve started to get a lot of hate on the internet, which is super exciting for me, honestly, because I think that means you’re really succeeding. A lot of the hate I get is just straight white men who say, like, “Women are never told what to do. You’re reaching. You’re trying to get clout.” Just weird stuff, but I think that that even speaks to it even more, and it makes me happy that people comment that, because it validates my point that no matter what a woman does, she’s going to be put down. I never… You can correct me if I’m wrong, but how many times are men in music put down? Slim to none, in my opinion. But women are constantly scrutinized, and that’s what I want to bring to light in a very, very direct way, and I’m very proud of myself for “Pink Things”, because that’s the first record where I really did that, and there will definitely be a lot more of me doing that.

    To check out the full interview click here!