Let’s face it. Every die-hard music fan’s guilty pleasure is to discover new artists and put them on to their friends, specifically when it’s before an artist takes off. With streaming sites such as Spotify and SoundCloud running the game, each and every person with an internet connection has the opportunity to be their own A&R, and there’s just something special about being a day one fan before any hype.

HellaNames, by way of Connecticut, is an independent artist who has built his fanbase organically, preferring to let his music do the talking for him as he keeps growing through music.

As more catch on to his wave, it’s simply fuels his motivation to keep pushing forward. Not to mention, he’s only been creating music for about a year now on a serious level, aside from performing in his church’s band. He’s also that “lucky discovery” SoundCloud enthusiasts are ecstatic to stumble across.

By teaching himself majority of what he knows, HellaNames impressively takes a DIY approach to his music, including teaching himself how to mix and master his own tracks and without being swayed too much by what other artists are doing.

The singer’s sound is a more laid-back approach to the umbrella term of alternative R&B, with a focus on building a mesmerizing vibe with something for everyone to enjoy. Combining his Jamaican culture with his east coast upbringing, HellaNames is building his confidence up with his catalog and considering how far he’s come in a short amount of time, the future is looking bright as ever for fans of music inevitable to get lost in.

The Source: How long have you been doing what you do?
HellaNames: I’ve been creating music on a serious level for only a year. 

How did you get started?
I got my start by playing the drums in church.

Is there an early memory you’d like to share about getting into your craft?
I didn’t have much of a fun childhood, so not being able to roll up when I wanted resulted in my falling in love with music. I realized this was the only thing that made me happy. 

How do you describe your sound?
I have a very unique sound that often confuses people because I constantly change flows and melodies. Me being Jamaican is what really separates me from anyone else that can sing and rap.

Who are your influences?
My top three people who influence me musically are Vybz KartelSizzla Kalonji and PARTYNEXTDOOR.

What is some advice that has stuck with you?
Growing up my pops always asked me every week at some random point, “What’s the first sign of responsibility?” and the answer was “taking care of yourself.” It’s amazing how much deeper that answer is truly is. 

What do you hope people take away from listening to your music?
I want to remind people that being authentic will get you a lot farther life. I want to be able to change people’s lives of every color and culture.. I want them, the hood n*ggas, rich white kids, homeless, the broken women, and people that are incarcerated to know that if no one understands. I do.

Tell us a little bit about what concepts or themes that reoccur in your new project?
All I can say is there’s a love story being told. I kinda am bringing back the old Drake in a hood way.

What was your creative process like for this project?
For these last two singles, I honestly just freestyled these songs in my room for my supporters, since I haven’t been releasing any new music lately. I literally had to teach myself how to engineer these last six months and surprisingly I’m not as bad as I thought.  

The first song I dropped this month, “#Love,” was just something I felt needed to be shared to all the guys out there who can’t really find the words and “Deeper” is somewhat the sequel of “#Love” for the women who have met a lot of different men, but not a different man.

What are you hoping to accomplish next in your career?
Next step for me is a pushing a upcoming single called “#PartyOnTheWeeknd” and really allowing my music to open up the doors for me to bless the world, build relationships and learn the industry. I still haven’t been to a show or concert before so that’s definitely something I want to happen as soon as possible.