It’s hard to find dope, genuine creatives in today’s industry, but one that we’ve grown to personally know and connect with is Michael DeBlasio out of Queens, NY. Michael currently writes for ITSBIZKIT.com — and formerly AllHipHop.com and MissInfo.TV. His organic and passionate approach to journalism is what separates him from others and has garnered him the attention of some legends in his field, such as Elliot Wilson, Rob Markman, Mikey Yi, and of course, the ‘Biggest Blogger In The World’ — ITSBIZKIT.
Mike also wears two other important hats. Publicist and studio manager. In 2020, he established his own PR company, deblazeo PR LLC. He then leveled up to his own office space in Studio 17, a recording studio based in Brooklyn, NY. A few months later, he found himself taking over the role as the studio’s official booking manager.
So of course you know we had to get an exclusive Q+A with Mike, where he speaks on his beginnings, what inspires him, his future endeavors, and much more! Check-in below!
Q: How did you start your career in journalism?
– In 2014, I had a friend who was rapping and we were brainstorming ways to get his music more traction. At the time, blogs / sites were still the #1 source of people getting their music. So I thought, how do we get him on these sites? So I started my own, [which I shall not name because I plan to revamp it somewhere down the line] and from there I started blogging heavily. Unfortunately I was new to the WordPress game and my site got shut down for too many copyright infringements. I then connected with ITSBIZKIT in 2015 because he was looking for writers and he took me under his wing. Biz God taught me almost everything I know and connected me with a lot of people. Because of his referral I started to write for AllHipHop.com — where I learned more about journalism and not just blogging. At the time, this was my 9-5, so I took the craft very seriously and learned all that I could, connected with whoever I could, and attended as many events that I could. With my work ethic being recognized, and a lot of help from networking on Twitter, my name started buzzing and around 2017 is when I felt I actually have my foot in the door and my work is starting to pay off. I have a lot more to learn and accomplish, but where I envisioned myself to be when I first started in 2014 is where I am now. But the real work has just started for me!
Q: How do you define “journalism”?
Obviously journalism is different depending on the field, but to me in Hip-Hop, it’s the journalist’s job to bring light to up-and-coming artists on their respective platforms. With many publications fully focused on mainstream artists and their news, I like to go in a different direction and write about those who people may not know about alongside the big names. Helping unsigned artists get recognized was the reason I even started in the first place and will always be my main reason for writing.
Q: What / who inspires you?
Everything about Hip-Hop. It’s more than just music. It’s a culture. There’s a certain cloth you have to be cut from to make it, which I can relate to being a self-starting journalist. Many artists I listen to also inspire me. Mainstream and unsigned. I may not relate to their exact struggles but I can relate to the struggle of wanting to make it on your own and doing anything possible to guarantee your dreams. A perfect example is Nipsey Hussle (RIP). Everyone that knows me, knows he is my #1, and was long before his tragic passing. Him as a man and artist gave me that motive to take that leap and begin my career. His words and music have been my hussle and motivation since I started, and forever will be.
I am also inspired by my fellow writers. I am blessed to be a part of a circuit of writers that genuinely help each other, and keep one another afloat. These are people I can say are really like my family that honestly care for one another’s well-being and work. And I am forever grateful for that.
Q: What are you currently working on?
I have a few things in the works but what I can speak on is my upcoming, fourth “Midnight Cyphs” compilation. These are projects I put together with artists I like and personally know, with original fresh songs from them. My first three were successful, but with this next one, I plan to do things differently. This time around I plan to create with the artists in actual studio sessions and organically cook up. I also hope to do 2-3 visuals, and ultimately a show with the featured artists. It’s still in the beginning stages but I hope to drop in the fourth quarter of this year.
I also have a few more podcast appearances secured, so be on the look-out for that as well!
Q: Drop a gem for anyone who is aspiring to succeed in your field.
Man, just be real and transparent. Don’t come off as a writer who is doing it for clicks / clout but because you really care for what / who you’re writing about. Also build genuine relationships with fellow people in the industry; artists, managers, writers, etc. A lot of the music world is who you know, not what you know. However, with that being said, learn as much as you can about your craft! There’s always more to learn.
I also pride myself in being a writer that is not just “behind a computer” — so I attend events, studio sessions, industry parties, etc. as much as you can! NETWORK! — You never know who you will meet and how they can put you in position to win! Which will ultimately put you in a position to help your people win! We’re all in this together!
Thomas “Bubba” Harrison, From Hip Hop To Major Flights, He Has Always Shined
Queens native Thomas “Bubba” Harrison has lived an exciting life. Thomas exemplifies perseverance and dedication to pursuing greatness from his time with the legendary rap group ONYX to landing various successful real estate deals and even starting a black-owned commercial flight business.
Dealing with a rocky First venture with a music imprint partnered with Sony that Harrison had to repivot out of due to unfortunate circumstances halting the deal and rekindling his passion for music. 1997 then came, and life changed for Thomas as he began writing under the name Bubba Smiff as he began recording with the ONYX. However, his love for real estate took off during that time, and he netted a quarter million in value from his first property purchases he used from his rap career money.
Now, Thomas started to become a real estate Tycoon and business genius. Throughout the early 2000s, Harrison accrued over fifty properties from New York to California. He used the immense network he gained in music to help maintain upkeep and boost expansion for his ascending real estate empire. He also established a successful credit repair business that helped people purchase the cars and houses of their dreams. Thomas even previewed his future ventures by influencing people to fly with Jet Smarter. This private airline company gave customers flights for quality at the time because it was his passion and dream to run a successful flight business, so he wanted to see the backend side of that business.
This man Thomas “Bubba” Harrison, originating from Queens, has a God-given acumen IQ, and this was only the start because years passed before the recent COVID era. Thomas and two colleagues pooled enough money to purchase a plane together. This motivated Harrison to enroll in Long Island Aviators School to work on his piloting certificate because he wanted to be more than an owner. Now, he is putting together his next ultra-successful business venture, Fly Flashy, which is progressing smoothly with a core base in Florida. Things are set in motion for it to become your new favorite airline soon. God fearing and passionate, hats off to Thomas Harrison for being a role model to artists worldwide and black men.
Get To Know @Uknowflyboi Ahead Of The Release Of “Tokyo Drift”
Flyboi Rich is someone that we talk to frequently at 4ShoMag. He’s one of the best rising artists out of Detroit, and just a look at his consistency in releases over the last few years, plus his rising streams on platforms (he’s had millions of streams) shows that the world is realizing it too.
It’s been a while since we’ve caught up with what he’s doing, but, ahead of the release of his new single “Tokyo Drift,” we wanted to catch up with him quickly about where he’s been, what’s inspiring him, and what we can expect from “Tokyo Drift.”
Check out our brief conversation below.
Could you tell me a bit about where you’ve been since our last conversation?
I’ve been doing a lot of traveling studying planning buying real estate learning more about the business side of music and taking meetings with smaller labels. Ethika recently had me come in to talk.
How has your career elevated?
My streams have been going up and with that comes trouble. People have been hacking into my social media accounts so I’ve just been rebuilding them. I’m seeing streams go up over a million a month sometimes, so I appreciate whoever is listening to me and watching my videos.
What’s the inspiration for your new music?
My new releases are inspired by the drama that I’ve been going through, just life situations that I’ve been putting into the music. When you hear me, I’m putting my all so people who understand my struggles can identify with what I’m saying. I always make sure the punchlines and metaphors hit too, because that’s something I always focus on.
What’s the message behind it?
The message behind it is to really talk crazy and speak your mind. Don’t let your voice get shut out. Open up and do whatever you want to do and take chances for what you want to become Don’t take shit from nobody. And to be honest, it’s also my story of coming from the trenches as an underdog.
What are you working on beyond this that your fans can wait on?
The next thing that I’m working on is definitely more music — starting with the release of “Tokyo Drift.” I’m also working on new ways to present my brand to people — whether it’s more clothes and fashion lines on the way, or being featured on bigger blogs and radios. You’re going to be seeing a lot more of me in the near future.
Keep up with Flyboi Rich on Twitter and Instagram at @uknowflyboi.
R&B/Soul Music’s Newest Star: Oshanna Listeners on a Journey of Self-Discovery and Empowerment
Meet Oshanna Naomi Davis, the rising star in R&B/soul music. She hails from Toronto but grew up in Brampton, and is currently based in Vaughan. Oshanna draws her inspiration from some of the greatest musicians, including Michael Jackson, Lauren Hill, Alicia Keys, Kiesha Cole, Mary J. Blige, and Jhene Aiko. Her music is a unique blend of R&B/soul, chill, and alternative sounds that represent her perspective on life.
For Oshanna, music is more than just a hobby; it’s her passion and calling. It provides her with a safe space to express herself and connect with others. Oshanna’s music invites her listeners on a journey of self-discovery, vulnerability, and empowerment. Her latest project, “Energy,” is a testament to the power of authentic connections and the transformative nature of friendship. It’s inspired by Oshanna’s close friendship with someone who taught her the real meaning of unconditional love.
“Energy” is the first single from Oshanna’s upcoming EP, which is scheduled to be released in August 2023. Her performance at the NXNE Festival in Toronto in June will be something to look forward to. Additionally, as the first-place winner of the Coast to Coast Artist Showcase, Oshanna will be going to the finals in Miami on November 11th to perform some unreleased music.
Through her music, Oshanna hopes to inspire her fans to follow their dreams and conquer their challenges. Her message of self-love, authenticity, and vulnerability is a source of liberation and empowerment for her listeners. As a rising star in the world of R&B/soul music, Oshanna’s future is undoubtedly bright. Her music is a beautiful invitation for her listeners to embark on a journey of self-discovery, vulnerability, and empowerment.
Check out her new single “Energy” below.