All the way from Toronto, Canada, Boland is a rap artist with a style that is just as unique as his name. Combining hip-hop with a touch of Bob Dylan, Boland aims to captivate listeners with his sense of music. Hood Critic Magazine got a chance to interview the artist recently and here’s what he had to say…
HCM. How did you come by your stage name?
Boland. I came about my stage name pretty easily, as it’s my real birth name. Everybody in my life (that was close to me) exclusively referred to me as Boland, so it was a natural fit.
HCM. When did you discover your love for music and what made you realize you wanted to pursuit a career in music?
Boland. My love for music began at a young age, as music was always being played in my house. A career in music really became a dream of mine when I first heard Bob Dylan. I remember feeling as if he was expressing ideas and realities that I couldn’t properly convey. I realized at that time that I too could perhaps make people feel so understood. Of course, being a born hip-hop head raised off the meteoric rise of Eminem, Dr Dre, Nas and others, it only made sense for me to rap to make that happen. To this day all I listen to avidly is rap and Bob Dylan.
HCM. To what or whom do you accredit your sense of style?
Boland. My sense of style I can accredit to a few icons. Basically, imagine if Bob Dylan rapped. Haha. Long coats and fitted caps with flannels in the winter, shorts, polos, tanks and, again, flannels in the summer. Never without a pair of white on white Air Force ones. A must. Also, I am a brand ambassador for a budding Toronto streetwear company, Nothing Ventured Nothing Gained. Their threads definitely make my rotation. They also have some crispy new designs they’ve shown me recently that I can’t wait to rock over the fall and winter months. Check for them on the gram @nvngnolimits.
HCM. On your current/upcoming album… How did you come up with the concept for this project?
Boland. I think my main asset as a creator is my variation in styles. I can rap your face off a la Jadakiss and Big Pun, I can have fun like Biggie, I can ache like Joe Budden or Denzel Curry and some of the newer wave…. this mosaic created my album, Polychrome. I look forward to offering you the many variations. The album has three parts – Red, Blue and Green. Look for it sometime in the fall.
HCM. What are some of your greatest challenges as an artist, and what is your greatest attribute when it comes to your work ethic?
Boland. My greatest challenge as an artist is getting heard. To even get someone to click a link today is incredibly difficult. The plethora of releases is impossible to keep up with even for me, and it’s part of my job to do so. Being heard is absolutely the hardest part in today’s market. My greatest attribute when it comes to my work ethic is undoubtedly my hunger. I want this more than anybody alive, and I love the grind. I love the dirt. I love sweating it out and putting in the hours and obsessing over it. I think in this game too many people love the wins, the accolades and the lifestyle. To truly make it I believe you have to love the dirt. You have to love the process.
HCM. What impression would you like listeners to be left with after hearing your music?
Boland. I want listeners to have many different impressions based on the version of me they hear. I want them to feel as if they’ve never quite heard it this way before. I want them to be motivated, moved and fired up. I want them to be able to listen to me pensively on a subway, I want them to be able to turn me up to fifteen at a house party, I want them to jump around a club or to nod their heads in the car. I am all of these things and more, which I think gives me a distinct advantage over my competition.
HCM. What are your plans for the near future?
Boland. My near future includes a tour in the fall, as well as dropping more singles and, eventually, the album. I can’t wait for you to hear!
HCM. Is there anyone you’d like to thank, any shout outs?
Boland. I want to shout out my mom, my sister (who directed the video for this song! Out soon!) my team, my producer NAWMS (@nawms.music) who is the absolute best in the city right now, and everyone who makes this possible on a daily basis. Enjoy the single!