V-Train has bagged spots in our weekly Hip-Hop and Rap two weeks in a row with his songs 'Sunday Service' and 'Sunset on the BLVD'. Tamara Jenna got talking with V-Train to get more of the detail behind the artist
We're so glad that you could join us today V-Train! So when was 'Sunset on the BLVD' released?
Sunset on the BLVD was released on March 25 2022.
Where are you based?
When did you realise that you were an artist?
My mother was a pianist for the church. At home, she would have a keyboard to practice on every day. I was fascinated on learning about the piano so I would play random notes and sounds for fun. My parents noticed my desire to learn music but for some reason didn’t have me sign up for lessons because they didn’t notice the possibility of my talents but my friends and teachers at school did. This led me to take drum lessons in school and later, I became the primary drummer at my church. Years later I picked up the guitar and bass and just collected enough instruments to create my own studio.
When creating the track/tracks, who were your biggest artistic influences?
I would say J Dilla the late Hip-Hop Producer. He is the godfather of the subgenre of Lo-fi Hip-Hop and I’ve been trying to study his techniques to make my music sound interesting because it’s just instrumental. Because the rapper has always been the focus, Hip-Hop instrumentals have always been just seen as background support music for the MC. J Dilla was one of few producers that made Hip-Hop enjoyable to listen to without the need for a
rapper or M.C. That is something I would like to do in my music.
When is your favorite time of day to create?
Anytime on the weekends. I have a full-time job, so I don’t have time available on the week to produce music. On the contrary, I have all the time available on the weekends which gives me a lot of freedoms to produce my music.
What motivates you to create?
The people around me continue to motivate me. I’ve always received a lot of feedback and excitement from friends and relatives whenever I announce that I am working on a new project. I also have a very supportive online group of musicians who encourage each other to pursue our musical aspirations and share each one’s work to increase notoriety on our social media platforms.
How do you define success as an artist?
I would define success as an artist as accomplishing your goals no matter how big or small, they seem. They could range from releasing a single on Spotify and gaining a thousand of streams to developing a multi-platinum album. Once you accomplish these tasks, you have been successful.
Does art help you in other areas of your life?
Definitely. After laying both my parents to rest and being confined to my apartment as the result of the pandemic, I felt isolated and depressed. During those rough times the only thing that kept me going was my faith, supportive community, and music. During the 2020 pandemic, I spent most of the time playing guitar to blues music because at the time I really loved listening to the delta blues. It was after I took piano lessons from my music teacher and good friend Jon Hart that I decided to switch to music production lessons. After a few months of lessons, I found my niche in the Lo-fi Hip Hop world and continued to flourish in that area. It helped me gain recognition online and another source of income. Although I faced a lot of difficult challenges, I was grateful that they lead up to the release of my albums and singles.
How do you develop your artistic skills?
I listen to other artists to see what makes them unique. I also combine my experience in music theory, piano skills, and technology into a song and then I just go from there.
What are your ultimate career goals?
I hope to become a full-time music producer and collaborate with rappers and other musicians and assist them in boosting their career and recognition.
How do you collaborate with other artists? I follow them on their social media pages and after we form a good acquaintance or a good friendship, I’d would ask them if they would like to collaborate. Afterwards, I would share the artists profile page and our music to help the artist. I’ve done that with one artist named BESIC. She offered her talents on her Instagram page, and I sent her a request to create and sing the lyrics on one of my songs. Afterwards, we developed a good friendship and continue to like each other’s music.
What are your future plans? What can we look forward to for the rest of 2022?
I’m currently in the works of creating another Lo-fi album and more singles along the way. I’m really excited on where this journey will take me.
Lansdale, United States
V Train opens this track using the sample of "Friends Let Me Tell You About Jesus" by the Dixie-Aires. This immediately sets the tone for this track of religious tone representing the old-time gospel sound that are present in Black Churches. This track has such a saucy hip-hop vibe, I would suggest adding it to your playlist for a chilled-out soulful and gospel-inspired energy. This is a track that has a simple religious message, warped in a lo-fi sensory production. Stream 'Sunday Service' by clicking the link below and get it added to your playlists!
V-Train - Sunset on the BLVD
Lansdale, United States
We praised 'V-Train' in our 'Weekly Top 10 Hip-Hop' article 08/04/2022. This week he is back again with his track titled ' Sunset on the BLVD'. Opening with a choppy lo-fi synth combined with electric guitar gives us an analog effect in the mixing process. We hear the old-school influence in this production. Another laid-back track from V-Train. I can imagine this track also being on our Sunday Playlists or on our long travel journeys whilst looking out at the scenery. Ut definitely takes you out of your surroundings and into a blissful place of tranquility. This track needs no vocals to take us to wonderland. Stream now by clicking the link below.