One thing that has been abundantly clear in Canada, its that hip hop is no longer a Toronto exclusive when it comes to exporting artists ready to compete on a global level. At the top of the charts currently, you can find some of the most talented Canucks to ever come out of the Great White North and there is no clear sign that our musical exports will stop dominating American airwaves any time soon. While a majority of Canada’s biggest star’shave emerged from the country’s cultural capital, there has been a crazy emergence of talent coming from cities that don’t have Drake as a resident. We have begun to see artists emerge from all over Canada, but none seems more poised for global domination than Vancouver’s Boslen.
At the intersection of talent and hard work, you can find Boslen and his team plotting their next moves to continue to grow his brash, energetic brand of music. Boslen began to turn heads with the release of his debut EP BLACK LOTUS last year, the 7-track project served as a strong introduction to what he is capable of sonically. Since then his passion and drive have been turned up a level to a point where he understands the stage is set, it will just take a snap of his fingers and his entire life around him is sure to change with the work that has been put in thus far. Something that makes me really gravitate towards Boslen is that he’s aware of what’s in store for him but always remains genuine to who he is and the people close to him, loyalty is a quality that can often go overlooked these days but if you are tapped in with the right people it could be the X factor that takes you the extra mile.
Today we are premiering his brand new single “VULTURES”, an electric new single that blew me away the first time I heard it. Boslen is not the type of artist to hear a beat, record on it, then drop it to the masses. One listen through “VULTURES” and you will understand his attention to detail, including a mind-shattering beat switch in the middle of the song that would impress the likes of Mike Dean. Production by justsayin and Kelland, two of his go-to producers, who have found the recipe to get the most out of Boslen and provide beats that really help amplify his containable energy to the stratosphere. Whether this is the single that makes Boslen a more familiar name or one of the other outstanding records he has loading up for his album, there’s no doubt in my mind that this wildly talented young artist from Chilliwack, British Columbia will top the charts sooner than later.
We got on a call with Boslen to check in with him during his time in quarantine and discuss the new single, inspirations, and being from Vancouver. Read our conversation below and be sure to stream “VULTURES” on all platforms here!
First off, for those not familiar please introduce yourself.
I am Boslen, I’m from Chilliwack, British Columbia, the valley. Started as a person that came from a dark place, getting a full-ride scholarship to play rugby, and from there I used music to help me out, found that it worked so continued to make music from there.
What has kept you motivated during this quarantine?
What’s kept me motivated is knowing that I have access to a full studio right now and I have a producer that came all the way from Turkey to build an album with me, he’s sleeping on my couch right now, knowing that these individuals and opportunities are still here during quarantine have kept me going. If I was too just be lazy and sit on the couch I know that’s not right to do to myself or the people that have put time and money into me. People still want to listen to music, I got supporters waiting for me to drop new music so all of that keeps me driven.
How have you felt it’s affected the music you’re recording?
This pandemic affected my inspiration a bit. The way I make music I need to go out or meet people, different vibes and energies will always spark new ideas with me. All I have to do now is sit at home, play a little bit of war zone, walk to the studio it’s tough. Take in mind too a lot of engineers don’t want to work right now, besides if we send it online it never is the same thing so its been affecting a lot but we still working every day.
Black Lotus was a big moment for you, how have you felt your career has changed since that EP dropped last year?
YESSIR!! It’s been exciting man! Black Lotus was a good benchmark or a clean slate for me, it shows people the ability I have on the hip hop side. The way me and my friends talk about music right now is, we ask “is it candy, or is it something you can sink your teeth into?” On BLACK LOTUS all of those songs are hype candy-like songs, they’re edible and you can consume them fast. People can pick them up and put them down really quickly but what it has built for me now is a platform where I can share my voice a bit more and now I can have a bit more artist integrity and take more time on my sound to find who I am.
How do you feel coming from Vancouver has given you a fresh perspective on the music you make?
I think it’s beautiful coming from this area. I feel like people have a negative mindset sometimes, saying things like “Ah I wish I was from Toronto or LA” but I see the culture here. We have all the people here, there are kids here that are hungry, working, and looking for someone to provide inspiration. The city right now is an open slate, its like the backcountry. There’s a throne there and nobody has taken it yet so, ya know?
Are you looking to put on for Vancouver as you continue to grow?
Yeah definitely. Always going to put on for Vancouver, always going to put on for The Valley/Chilliwack. The only way to do it, we got to build our own thing out here, it’s all in due time though honestly.
When did you know you wanted to focus on music full time?
I was in university playing rugby, in my first year I tore my ACL once. I came back that summer and played then tore my ACL again. I was supposed to play on Team Canada but tearing your ACL back to back lowers your chances a lot for playing overseas. The first time I injured myself, I was writing a lot just to pass the time and get out of my own head, I was feeling mad depressed. When the second time came, it was crazy cause I was releasing music on Soundcloud and playing it at parties but I had never thought I would pursue it seriously. The day I tore my ACL the second time there was A&R from a label in LA that wanted to offer us a publishing deal I think. I had just come back from the game, my scholarship had just been dropped, I was like “what am I going to do?” sitting on my couch praying. At that moment everything sort of clicked and I knew I had to chase it full time.
Who were some of your biggest influences on the music you make now?
My mother, growing up with a single mother was tough but she shaped me and played all kinds of different music in the house growing up. In terms of artists, Kid Cudi was the main one for me growing up. Kid Cudi, Mac Miller, Akon, and recently Travis Scott.
If you could get any artist on a feature right now, who would you want to work with?
What about producers, do you have a dream producer collab you have in your sights?
Kanye, Mike Dean, or Frank Dukes.
Are you itching to get back on stage?
BRO! I watch performance videos every day! I’m about to do a Livestream show on my IG Live today for VULTURES but I’m trying to get on stage as soon as I can. Especially some of the opportunities we had before the virus happened it was about to be madness! Can’t wait to get back on stage and go crazy in front of the kids again!
Do you have an ideal performance location when this is all over?
Obviously headlining Rolling Loud would be amazing but definitely selling out Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
Tell us a little bit about your new single “VULTURES”?
It came from a place not too long ago, I made it around two months ago. It was based on how I was feeling on the people around me, not necessarily the ones in my close circle. I found that you have supporters, you have haters, and then you have the people in the middle who are there just to watch out of curiosity, those are the people I’m directing the song at. Not out of hate, but bringing it to light that many people in this day and age they don’t want to just jump on to supporting an artist or making a decision for themselves. Artists now really have to put themselves out there and these Vultures hover above watching until you pop, then they hop on. Nobody wants to be there from the jump so just wanted to tap into that energy.
What do you have planned for the rest of the year?
We got music videos dropping, a new line of march, ultimately trying to funnel everything to the album. I’ve been working on this album every day in the studio and trying to make it something I can be remembered by for the rest of my life.
Any parting words to share with our audience?
First of all, thanks for having me on this platform. If you’re chasing something man and if you’re really trying to do something, you just gotta sacrifice yourself and what you for what you want to become and just keep working man, that’s all you gotta do. Excited to look back on this when we’re selling out Rogers Arena!