In any underground market, certain goods become hot commodities and The Blow Up’s Black Market is no exception to that economic rule. Each week we’ll bring you the ‘Coveted Contraband’ from The Black Market (based on your ratings).
Check out this week’s gem Zzz and continue to light 1-5 stars for future submissions so they can separate themselves as highly coveted contraband!
Artist Name: Zzz aka Triple Z aka sleepiboi but people address me as “Z”.
Hometown: Seattle, WA
I’m a 23 year old white boy rapping after college to mostly soundcloud beats in the jazzy, boom bap, lo-fi category. The past 12 months were spent in Beacon Hill curating my sound and branching out from my nostalgic, retro hip hop vibe to a more well-rounded approach. Now, moved out, jobless, slightly lost and with my first mixtape released, I answer these questions in some back seat on the 101 visiting my friends in LA for 2 weeks.
Finish this sentence: “When people hear me, they’re probably going to think of…” A raspy voiced, red haired boi smoking weed and sleeping with the lyricism and positive vibes of a dedicated musician.
What sparked your inspiration for a music career?
I’ve had grandiose ambition my whole life, growing up I wanted to be in the NBA, if I ever had an interest, a hobby or a passion I would imagine myself at the top of my field or notorious in my craft. I started rapping at 19 (for fun) a year into college, inspired by a friend Hannah Bratton and we formed a little rap group. A year later she and I were the only ones still into it and to this day we’re still going strong chasing the dream. When I graduated I had the choice to continue what I viewed as a “normative life” or take a risk and listen to my heart and go all out with music. Since then it’s been meeting one cool person after another, having great experiences that show me I’m on the correct path. I struggle a lot with anxiety, though and at times I wonder in a panic if what I’m doing is really right. When I get those thoughts, I usually roll something up, play a beat and write a verse to distract myself, works every time.
What are some goals you have set for yourself?
First full album, west coast tour, college tour, Music Festival, play for a big venue packed to the brim.
What crew do you roll with?
My inner circle is Real Ideal, this label out of LA and Seattle that just threw a NYE show at Bonvoyage Vintage in Pioneer Square with up and comers like MO$ and my guy Malcolm Rebel. I’m currently in LA with my man Lewis aka KingBail helping him on his fashion grind with the hemp clothing line. My man Seth the Engineer at Purple Door Studios in Belltown stays showing me the ropes and I gotta give a shout out to Nyles Davis as well.
I have my little get away spot in Vancouver too at Fader Mountain studio where my guy Roberto records the tracks I don’t lay down in Seattle. Him and this producer Yada Yada aka Todd Norman are my go to duo when I need input on sound quality and potential bangers that should be given more attention.
Speaking of bangers, my next release is a collab with one of my old friends Kamal Bilal aka Ricky. who just recently released a mixtape titled vvBalanced and can easily be described as a psychedelic, vegetarian lil’ yachty meditating with his Nebraskan girlfriend. All of his songs are auto-tuned masterpieces with hilarious ad-libs and bape inspired lyrics.
Who are your go to producers?
As I said all of my producers I find by scouring soundcloud so from there I would say my favorite producers are; Jar Jar jr. from Ireland, Abe Masaryk a teenager from Austin Texas, Baron Rose another Vancouver boi, Eevee the Queen of lo-fi hip hop and especially my Chattanooga patna Keem the Cipher.
What other special talents can you throw down?
I play guitar and I will hassle you in FIFA and super smash (N64 or gamecube)
What separates you from the rest?
I believe in equality, positivity, justice, growth and change. I don’t want to be a conscious rapper who jams sad facts down people’s throats, but I strive to send a message of racial integration, togetherness, love and awakening in my music and the deeper you listen to the lyrics the more you will extradite that message of peace. I like to keep the political and moral things hidden deep using metaphors and word play so that those who just want to listen and enjoy the sounds and cadences can do so as well. Conscious or not music is about joy, rap and hip hop are about community and having fun; it’s about resisting those in power who would rather see you dejected and lifeless.
I put it all into my music, the pursuit of freedom and equality, the anger towards oppressors, the joy from life’s simplest pleasures, and the sadness from an impactful loss, it’s all there. It is a genuine reflection of myself as a person.
Project with Ricky. along with Video Releases
Full Album for the summer.
3 definitive tracks or favorites right now:
Def. of Ill will always be my favorite track of mine, close second is “The Cost feat. Tut” because it was the first track where I felt I went all out and show my full lyrical potential.
Also the song “Promise” is one of my favorites because it’s about someone very close to my heart.