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Photography by Caleb Foster | Words by Raya Biasca | Grooming by Obie “Mizzay” Cuts

The artist’s name has an intriguing origin that can be traced back to their early days as a basketball player. At the age of 10 or 11, their basketball coach was impressed by their exceptional shooting skills on the court. Recognizing their talent, the coach bestowed upon them the name they are now known by as an artist. It’s a humorous coincidence that the coach’s son has also gone on to become an NBA player, adding an interesting twist to the story behind the artist’s name. This unique connection to their past as a young athlete has now become an integral part of their identity as an artist, a reminder of their basketball days and the recognition of their exceptional abilities that inspired the name that they proudly carry in their music career today.

Living the majority of his life in New York, the artist’s journey into rap music was heavily influenced by their musically inclined family. Growing up in a household surrounded by music, they had the unique opportunity to interact with notable artists and musicians from an early age. Their sister’s father and his brothers were part of the renowned group Soul for Real, a prominent figure in the 90s music scene. As a result, the artist’s home became a hub for various musicians, and they had the chance to meet iconic figures like Mary J. Blige and Jim Jones. This exposure to the music industry and meeting such esteemed artists fueled their passion for music, particularly rap, and set them on a path to pursue their own musical journey.

Photo shot at Dopely Studios

Rap music, according to the artist, offers a distinct and raw perspective that sets it apart from other genres. It provides a more untainted, a more uncensored/unrestricted type of perspective into the world.

“I feel like rap music is like a peek into the full access to the world without any censorship.”

The artist draws inspiration from a diverse range of influential musicians who have left a lasting impact on their own style and approach to music. Among their top musical influences are iconic rap figures such as Lil Wayne, Lloyd Banks, Cam’ron, Dipset, JAY-Z, and Drake.

In the creative process of song creation, Splash reveals his unique approach, which involves immersing himself in the music he plans to write about. The deliberate act of attentive listening becomes the foundation on which his songwriting flourishes.

“Before I write, I just listen to it over and over and over and over and over and just like allow my feelings to come from it and I go for what I feel from the beat,” he said.

The artist’s recently released album, “Elephant in the Room,” has already begun garnering significant attention and feedback within the first few hours of its release. Despite the short time frame, they have been receiving an abundance of positive responses from their audience. This album marks a transformative phase for the artist, reflecting a different side of their artistry and creative expression. With a diverse range of tracks, they aimed to cater to a wide audience, offering something for everyone to appreciate. While not every song may resonate with every listener, they are confident that within the album, there are moments that will connect with each individual in their own unique way.

Among all the songs in the album, the artist’s favorite is “No Neighbors.” What makes this track stand out for them is its distinctiveness from their usual song structures and creative approach. Despite venturing into new territory, the artist remains true to themselves, maintaining their unique style and artistic identity. The different format of “No Neighbors” pleasantly surprised the artist, as well as the people who had the opportunity to hear the album before its official release. The feedback they received from their listeners emphasized that the change was a positive one, appreciating the refreshing and innovative direction of the song. With “No Neighbors,” the artist embraces experimentation while staying authentic to who they are, delivering a standout track that adds an exciting dimension to the overall album experience.

“No Neighbors” also marks a significant departure from the artist’s first music ever released, showcasing a notable growth in their artistic journey. Looking back on their early work, they acknowledge that they have come a long way since then, both personally and musically. The major shift in “No Neighbors” lies in their approach to the creative process. In the past, they tended to overanalyze every aspect, getting caught up in the endless possibilities and potential problems. This overthinking often hindered them from moving beyond the initial creation phase. However, with “No Neighbors,” they consciously chose a different path. They let go of excessive contemplation and instead embraced a more spontaneous and organic approach to the songwriting process. The result was a sense of freedom and ease, as they allowed their ideas to flow without being constrained by overthinking. This newfound sense of creative freedom led them to create a song that represents a significant milestone in their artistic journey, reflecting both their growth and willingness to let their art pour forth naturally.

Photo shot at Dopely Studios

For this rapper, the best thing about being in the music industry is the overwhelming love and support they receive from strangers who connect with their music on a personal level. The power of their lyrics allows them to forge deep and meaningful connections with listeners they may have never met in person. Through their music, they share their personal experiences, and in turn, find that people from all corners of the world can relate to and understand their journey. This emotional resonance forms a unique bond between the artist and their audience, creating a sense of camaraderie and friendship. These newfound connections, which the artist affectionately refers to as friends, span across borders and cultures, demonstrating the universal language and impact of music. As a rapper, the ability to touch the hearts and lives of so many strangers, creating lasting relationships through their art, is a truly rewarding and fulfilling aspect of their career.

Splash also shared his admiration for Fabolous, citing him as a top fashion icon in the rap industry. When it comes to an album with no skips, he pointed to Lloyd Banks’ “The Hunger for More,” a project that has undoubtedly left a lasting impression on him. As for the GOAT verse from a rapper, Splash highlights Lil Wayne’s iconic line from DJ Khaled’s “We Takin’ Over,” a verse that continues to resonate with him: “I am the beast. Feed me rappers or feed me beats.”

He also expressed his deep appreciation for certain songs, like Ja Rule’s “Always On Time” and Fabolous’ “Trade It All,” wishing he had been the one to create such timeless tracks.

Reflecting on his journey, Splash expressed gratitude towards Sheri Peterson, an individual from Atlanta who believed in his talent and tried to sign him when he was just 14 years old. His older brothers served as his childhood role models, inspiring him to pursue his dreams in the music industry. As an adult, he looks up to his grandfather as a guiding figure. In the spirit of supporting fellow artists, Splash recommends listening to Passport General, an underrated rap artist who he believes deserves more recognition for his talents.

Splash revealed a simple yet powerful philosophy that he lives by: “Treat people how you wanna be treated.” This age-old golden rule serves as a guiding principle in his life, emphasizing the importance of kindness, empathy, and respect in all his interactions.

When it comes to those embarking on their journey in the rap industry, Splash offers straightforward and empowering advice – “Just do it.” He emphasizes the importance of following one’s instincts and being true to oneself. In an industry that lacks a fixed blueprint for success, he encourages aspiring artists to break free from traditional conventions and forge their own path. There are no rigid rules to adhere to, no specific programs to follow; the key is to trust your instincts, embrace your unique voice, and fearlessly pursue your passion.

Splash also shared some of his upcoming projects that fans can look forward to. Firstly, there will be a series of music videos coming soon, including the highly anticipated “Trade It All” video. Splash is all set to captivate his audience with visually stunning and creatively crafted visuals to complement his music. Furthermore, fans can mark their calendars as he plans to release another album at the end of September or early October.

Photo shot at Dopely Studios

As we wrap up this candid conversation with Splash, it’s evident that this rising rap star is leaving an indelible mark on the music industry. From his early influences to the growth he’s experienced in his creative journey, Splash’s passion for music and dedication to authenticity shine through in every aspect of his artistry. As he continues to make waves with his powerful lyrics and unique approach to songwriting, we can’t help but be excited for the upcoming projects he has in store. With a promising album on the horizon and visually stunning music videos on the way, Splash’s impact on the rap scene is only getting stronger.

Stay tuned as he continues to make a splash and redefine the boundaries of rap music, inspiring aspiring artists to fearlessly pursue their dreams and create their own waves in the industry.

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