GQ Bank$$ is out with its debut mixtape titled “Project Hallwayz“, a whimsical drift from the canon of murmured and more anonymous rap.
Born and raised in the Bronx, with this release GQ Bank$$ demonstrates a bold and resourceful artistic vision through which he showcases his eclectic rap.
The pieces that make up “Project Hallwayz” set up atmospheres that are suggestive, sometimes ethereal and evocative to the point of flowing into lyrically layered structures.
To get the most out of this, we reached GQ Bank$$ for an interview. Read on to find out more.
You’ve been making music since the age of 14. How has your artistic vision grown?
Bank$$: It’s grown drastically. I’ve got to give the credit to my dedication and hunger. Don’t get me wrong, at 14 I was nobody! They used to make fun of me, they never gave a young guy like me the time of day, but yeah, my shit is up there now, and for that I had to get my smarts up. I feel that was my only missing quality.
You grew up, both artistically and personally, in the Bronx. What influence did all this have in your music?
Bank$$: You know, the “Basic’s” hip-hop started here, in the Bronx, so of course the block parties and having to get cleaned up for those occasions just were parts of the culture embedded into my lifestyle. As a man, though, growing up in the Bronx is rough, of course. In particular, I feel being young and black is rough everywhere, but growing up in the Bronx is always an added pressure. I lost so many friends; it’s sad to say, but at some point you become numb to it, but that’s also what gives you the drive to make everybody proud before that clock stops. So, besides it being my birth place, it influenced me by teaching me I need to overcome the odds we go through as a city.
Although it lives inside the rap genre, your latest mixtape, “Project Hallwayz”, sounds distinctive. Is it more the result of a desire to break free from certain canons or to find new twists to them?
Bank$$: No, it was just me shining a light on where the homies used to vibe out, smoke up, and do fun shit without a care in the world. Just good times.
Do you consider yourself an artist who, thanks to his potential, goes on his way, or do you relate to what the music scene asks for and offers?
Bank$$: I just do my own thing! I had a moment where I wanted to try to fit in to what’s “in” today as far as music goes, but I’m big on maintaining “Me” as an artist. Also, you can feel that energy through the music, you can feel whether it’s really someone’s sound or not.
How much of your life experiences are in your music?
Bank$$: 80% my life, I would say, and the rest are things I saw people in my circle go through in the past.
What kind of message or relationship do you try to build with fans and listeners?
Bank$$: The relationship I’m tryin to build with fans and listeners is that I’m human, just like them, I don’t want any of them to feel like they’re not a part of this journey. When my time comes, I want them to feel they are there with me. My message is simple: overcome the adversity, the naysayers, the haters. Fuck them, make them feel you.
Do you have any anticipation to give us about your next release?
Bank$$: I just started the recording process for my next work. I don’t have a set title as of yet, but it’s going to be a classic, trust me! “Project Hallwayz” was stuff I wrote in 2015-2016, so the sound and everything else are going to be different. I have no set date as well, but next year for sure. Stay tap’d in !
Where can fans and anyone who’s interested find out more about you and your music?
Bank$$: . Make sure y’all follow me on Instagram @GQ_Banks [ link ]. Everything pertaining to my music is in my Linktree [ link ]. I really appreciate everybody for bangin’ with me, tho’.