Written By: Brittany Shawnté
Happy April all! I'm excited to have quite a few spotlights lined up in the coming weeks (as always, if you are an upcoming artist, producer, designer, etc., and are looking to be featured on the blog, feel free to email me, and I will get back to you as soon as I can).
Today, to bring in the new month, we have hip hop emcee A.R. Stylez (Always Real Stylez)! Hailing from Brooklyn, New York and raised by a single mother, A.R. grew up listen to good soul music from artists like Ben E. King, the Blue Notes, and Ray Charles. He took an great interest in art at a young age, but as he got older, he found that he could "paint pictures through words." His first performance was at the age of 13 at the historic Knitting Factory in NYC, and it was clear that music was an outlet to express himself. The emcee said of Brooklyn's influence, "Every day you're reminded that you're in the city that never sleeps. Living in the hood, being introduced to violence, poverty, and struggle will make just about anyone what to pursue better."
Inspired by artists with great talent and impact like Tupac Shakur and Kanye West, this artist is steadily making a name for himself within NYC and beyond! His first mixtape, Realism, dropped in 2012, and he has performed at numerous local events and for colleges and lounges. He's also performed in a fashion show which was hosted by Puma & Sassy of VH1's Black Ink Crew, and been a hype man on stage with Styles P & Sheek Louch's entourage, The Lox,during an event at NYC's BB Kings. A.R. was also selected as one of the artists of the 2013-2014 Dean’s List College Tour and was asked to participate in the Xtreme Freshman Tour this year, which is a 14 city nationwide tour, sponsored by Xtreme 104 FM and C&C Entertainment Firm. The event hits NYC on April 23rd! ]
A.R.'s most recent release is his new track "Love The Way," produced by Let That Boy Cook(formerly known as Louder Sounds), which is about a man openly expressing his feelings for a woman. "I tapped into my personal feeling with the thought of people who could possibly relate," the rapper said. Check out the track below!
He's currently working on his upcoming mixtape, Practice Makes Perfect, a project that he has written over 30 songs for. "Overall I just want to display growth," he said about the tape. "Not only my growth as an artist and man to my supporters, but the concept of Growth in general. Everything we pursue, or want to accomplish requires a growing and learning experience. The more you work on something, the better you become." He also has some other projects in the works, on the hush for now!
The emcee feels that something that separates him from other artists is his lyrical content. "My music has both influence & substance," A.R. stated. "I’m not afraid to be who I am. I’m not that street corner dealer. I’m not that guy who did 5 years for attempting murder. No disrespect to artist of that genre, but I’m just me. I look to inspire, teach, and motivate within my music." He continued on about his plans for his future, saying, "My dream and goal is to be able to make a solid living and foundation off giving my gift of music to the world." He wants to travel different places and connect with people from different races and cultures. "I also want to touch on a few other things, movies, magazines, who knows? If [it's] God will, it will come," he said.
You can check out more about A.R. Stylez on his official website and SoundCloud, and connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube!