Meet Shakari “TRAKGIRL” Boles, the DMV-based producer/songwriter who is taking the production game by storm. Her credits include names like Omarion, Luke James, and Tiffany Evans–just to name a few.
We recently sat down for an interview and the young creative spilled the tea on how up-and-comers should break into the industry, what it’s like being a female producer, and what’s currently bumping through her aux chord. Check out the candid interview below!
SB: How did you get started in the music industry?
TG: I was heavily surrounded by music growing up. Most of my family is musically inclined. I have brothers who sing, play instruments, etc. My mom played several instruments classically. So it’s been around me. But I wanted to do something different. In my teens, I always wondered who would make these sounds on my favorite albums. Just the thought of creating music that inspires others really pushed me to get into production. So I would study different genres, study creatives like Prince, Quincy Jones, curators like Timbaland, Missy Elliot, NO ID, Kanye West, The Neptunes… just to name a few. They all influenced me to start producing. I purchased my first beat machine at 14 with my red Gateway computer and just learned.
Once I got to college at Hampton University, I networked with a lot of different people. I made friends with other music heads like me who I’m so thankful for because they helped me along my journey. My first real placement was with Omarion my sophomore year of college.
SB: Who are some people you’ve worked with?
TG: So far I’ve worked with Omarion, Tiffany Evans, Luke James, Timbaland to name a few. I love creating with my friends.
SB: Who are some people you’d like to work with?
TG: Man… the list is super long! But my vision board includes: Rihanna, Jhene, Taylor Swift, Kanye West, Adele, Sam Smith, Sia, James Fauntleroy. The list is amazingly [long]. (laughs) That’s just to name a few.
SB: What’s your most memorable production credit?
TG: Everything I’ve done so far! God is good. He has a lot in store for me.
SB: What are some challenges you feel females face in the industry?
TG: I feel women need to support more of each other versus be so competitive. This industry is male dominated we should team up and just run things! I’m all for female empowerment. We’re queens. The world needs us!
SB: What’s bumping through your aux chord/playlist at the moment?
TG: My iTunes, Spotify, Tidall, and Soundcloud is pretty eclectic! (laughs) Currently I’m listening to Goldlink, Sango, Coldplay, a lot of 80s music, WATTBA. My ears are all over.
SB: What are you currently working on?
TG: Focusing on the sonics but I’m excited for you guys to hear what’s coming.
SB: When you’re not making music, what do you enjoy doing?
TG: I’m a foodie! So I enjoy eating (laughs), reading, exploring with my girlfriend, hanging out with friends, shopping, traveling, going to shows. All of that cool stuff!
SB: What’s one interview question you’ve never been asked but you wished you were asked?
TG: Tough one! Where do I see myself in 5 years? I’m a visionary. I dream.
SB: What advice do you have to producers looking to break into the industry?
TG: To focus on your craft. Work towards getting better and the rest will follow. The music should always come first. Keep your faith and prayers heavy.