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Exploring Tahj’s Path as an Alternative R&B and Rap Artist

Embark on a captivating journey as we delve into Tahj's unique path as an emerging artist, seamlessly blending the realms of alternative R&B and rap to create a distinct musical identity.

Photography by Andrew Velasquez | Words by Raya Biasca
Photo by Andrew Velasquez

In the ever-evolving landscape of music, few artists dare to push the boundaries and carve their own path. Enter Tahj, a visionary artist who has taken the world by storm with his groundbreaking approach to music. Blending the soulful rhythms of R&B with the raw energy of rap, Tahj has crafted a unique sound that captivates audiences and challenges the conventions of the industry.

Hailing from Inglewood, California, Tahj is a versatile artist who excels in various domains of music. As a singer, rapper, and songwriter, he describes his music within the alternative R&B, alternative rap genres.

“I have a background in the gospel. I sang in church as a kid, as well as a cappella. I was in an a cappella group in college, and so got a lot of my musical training in those spaces.”

Photo by Andrew Velasquez

Each artist has a unique path when it comes to getting into music, and for Tahj, it has always been a significant part of his family. He narrates stories that are closely tied to his grandfather and father, illustrating the profound influence they have had on his musical journey.

“My grandfather, he was in a band as a kid, played several instruments, you know, was a songwriter himself. And so, I really feel like music has kind of just been passed down generationally,” Tahj said.

“He, as a kid, you know, was in a little rap group, made beats, and just has become like a music connoisseur. So, he has tapes for days, CDs, full cases of CDs. And so, yeah, as a kid, I used to take my dad’s CDs and burn them to my MP3 player. And he would separate the albums by genre, so he had, a hip-hop kind of case. He had an R&B case, a neo-soul case. And so, I usually spent the most time in the neo-soul side,” Tahj said, talking about his father.

In college, he realized that music is something that he loves “more than just a pastime” so he got into it.”

When asked about his musical influences, he mentioned that “in terms of songwriting, artists like Sir and Frank Ocean really resonate with me. Partially because of the storytelling aspect of their lyricism and just their use of melody.”

“I would say SZA kind of falls into that camp as well. Just being able to give you these very catchy, very memorable lyrics and also providing something that’s extremely relatable,” he also said.

Talking about his song “Pass That,” he said that it’s a song “you might play when you’re in a blunt rotation, or while you’re getting ready to go somewhere.”

When people listen to Tahj’s music, he said that he wants them to “enjoy the music, but also hear the words that I’m saying.”

“There’s a lot of intention that I put into the lyrics and the delivery. And so that’s something I definitely want people to gravitate to,” he explained.

Photo by Andrew Velasquez

He mentioned that one of his current favorite albums is Black Swan by Smino.

“I feel like Smino as an artist is definitely blazing the trail as a rapper, as a singer as well.”

To Tahj’s fans, he wants you to know that:

“Life only takes on the meaning that you give it. And so, if you don’t live a life with intention and don’t ascribe meaning to the things that you’re doing, it’ll feel very meaningless or just feel kind of mundane.”

As Tahj fearlessly blazes his trail in the realm of alternative R&B and rap, his innovative sound and unwavering passion for music continue to captivate audiences, leaving an indelible mark on the industry and paving the way for a new wave of artistic exploration.

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