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Two Concrete Ways To Gain Influence As A Rapper



Progression is fickle in the musical environment. It’s both the most important method of measuring improvement, but at the same time, utterly meaningless unless it’s the right type of improvement. Over the past couple of decades, rapid advancements in technology have completely changed the way that we communicate with each other. In 2007, a majority of high school children owned flip phones, ten years later we have fully functioning computers capable of replacing our home desktops. In short, with the rapidly changing world, the path to stardom rapidly changes every single day. What may have worked for artists like Nas, Jay-Z, even Young Thug, may not necessarily work for artists in 2017. It’s important to realize that every artist begins at a different starting point on the road to glory. Take this in stride and create the right type of progress to push yourself in the correct direction.

This type of progress is what I wish to push in this essay that I’m writing today. While I love popular music as much as the next, I spend a majority of my listening time on Soundcloud. In addition to this, I am fortunate to call a number of excellent musicians my friends. Furthermore, I listen to around 75% of music links that I find online. Lastly, I read and listen to a lot of musicians interviews about coming up out of sheer curiosity. The point of explaining these points is that while I’m not directly affiliated with the music making experience, I know quite a bit about what it takes to “make it.” My ear for music constantly changes, allowing me to adapt to what’s hot at the moment as well as what will be hot next. As I sit on the sidelines watching artists’ stories unfold, I’ve come up with two factors that influence the rate of progression. For 2018 and beyond, I’d like to discuss these parameters so that all of the amazing hip hop artists I know are able to sprint to the finish line, regardless of where they started in the race to success. Quick Disclaimer: everything that I’m going to talk about is my own personal view. I’m well aware that these rules may not apply to everyone.

Create a spectacle.
In order to be anyone of importance in the world, you must be a spectacle. Act like an anomaly to attract an audience. Let’s face it; the days of getting noticed for sheer lyricism are long gone. It’s still possible in rare cases, like J. Cole or Kendrick Lamar (two artists who worked extremely hard to get in the positions that they are today) but don’t bank on it. That’s why so many artists go unfulfilled in their quest. Give the listener something to remember you by. What would you want your fans to say about you when they describe you? Bring the spectacle to your music. I’m not saying to have just one sound, but add similar characteristics so that we know can follow the growth in your music. Without remembrance, artists come and go quickly. Future’s trademark shtick of warbling charismatically originated on his Pluto album. It also consisted of songs such as Same Damn Time that featured traditional rapping styles. After seeing that his experimental sound garnered better reception, he would go on to use it heavily. This was the creation of the shtick.

Be confident in your shit. seriously.
One of the biggest killers of could-be great music comes from the artist: portraying their uncertainty on the track. Trust me, if you think you sound nervous you do. Even if it takes more than one hundred takes of making the song, keep going. Once you finish, begin experimenting with different cadences and pitches. Have a circle of friends who will give you an honest opinion. Make sure that you are confident in your work. Tee Grizzley’s “First Day Out” oozes with confidence that makes itself evident from the first line. How did it manage to amass tens of millions of views over the course of a few weeks? People gravitated to the song. The confidence Tee Grizzley conveyed captured the listener’s interest. That and the beat is ridiculously beautiful. When your confident in your work, it shows.

Apply these two rules and you’ll be well on your way to success.


4Men By Women

Bronx Celebrity Wardrobe Stylist, Denise Styless, Talks Hiphop Fashion and Fatman Scoop



Denise Styless, New York upcoming celebrity wardrobe stylist is making moves and breaking barriers in the fashion industry. Commencing her budding fashion & entertainment career in 2019 Denise is already making a name for herself as a fashion staple. Growing in her career she has styled NYCs elite from Fatman Scoop, actor and child prodigy River Mason Eromosele, and Rizr Footwear. Denise styling technique is a merge of lifestyle meets couture. As well, she is a model liaison merging models with events, runway shows, photo-shoots and casting calls nationally. In addition to gaining online support from fashion house FUBU.  Rising in fame she has been featured on various top tier outlets: Medium24hiphopVocal, One West Magazine, and Grind Magazine.  Here’s my interview with  celebrity wardrobe stylist, Denise Stylesss.

 How did you land such prominent hip-hop clients? I landed my clients by building my relationships with people. As well, through networking within the entertainment industry. When you’re transparent with your intentions, opportunities present themselves. 

What made you get into fashion? I got into fashion through my grandmother. She had a sewing machine and would create my Halloween costumes when I was a child. Her creative influence inspired me immensely. Once I unearthed my vast zeal for fashion I realized her influence carried me through my adulthood. 

celebrity wardrobe stylist Denise Styless and FatMan Scoop on set together

How was it working with the legend FatMan Scoop? Working with Fatman Scoop was an amazing experience. Fatman scoop is an icon that I watched in my youth. It made me reflect on my childhood. It was a full circle moment for me to dress someone that created roots within the hip-hop community.

What is the best advice you can give to someone aspiring to dress as a hip hop artist? The best advice I can give an aspiring celebrity wardrobe stylist is  to be normal and organically yourself. You want to treat your clients with love; similar to family. You want to enhance their style while capturing the essence of fashion.

What is the key to your success? The key to my success is God. My faith in God continues to keep me motivated and devoted to my craft.

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Co-Founder of Haute Agency, Chealse Sophia, Aims To Build An Empire Within The Talent And Model Industry




Toronto’s Very Own Chealse Sophia is the beauty-preneur creative behind your favorite brand. She has shattered the glass ceiling and revolutionized what it means to be a woman in a patriarchal entertainment industry.

It’s 2022, and this generation is moving different –the masculinity complex stigma is being challenged by empowered, devoted and self-driven women that are pushing the needle, trailblazing for the upcoming generations, and leading the charge for the hard-working women that hold contrary opinion, a voice of change that suits the world we live in today, and that value independence, and gender impartiality.

From Toronto, Ontario Canada – a woman currently grinding through her teeth to champion women’s resurgence in the corporate world, more so – the creative executive world –that is generally considered by a majority to be just music, film, sports & entertainment – and very much predominantly male and chauvinist in the boardrooms – is Chealse Sophia Howell, a 31-year old modeling executive that is building an Empire, a creative and healthy space for women to feel empowered, and equity to men alike.

Chealse is the founder & CEO of eponymous skincare product company SOPHIA, and the founder of talent agency Haute Agency, both of which have been making leaps in the creative industry. 

For Haute Agency, the company began in 2014 after a heaven-sent intuition sparked in Chealse’s mind that she could offer more to the more business, management, creative and branding side of the modeling industry. The company she founded at 23 years old has worked with multinational corporations such as Cover Girl, Amazon, OVO, New Balance, Pandora, Hello Canada, New Era, but not limited to. 

About six months ago, having been a model and in front of the camera before, Chealse would know a thing or two about what self-care & image essentially encompasses. The SOPHIA brand she says is about venturing into the cosmetics world, and later fashion. 

SOPHIA is a dream come true itself and it was only launched less than six months ago. In these 6 months we have gone viral multiple times on TikTok, sold out twice on our website and sold out on Amazon in the first 30 days of being listed, and have had a tone of organic support from big influencers” she chimes in vehemently.

Currently, Haute Agency is a 360 talent agency that was unearthed from her sheer determination to apply herself in vast areas of the modeling industry other than the actual performance aspect of it.

Haute Agency originally launched in 2014 as a model and talent agency, but I saw how social media was taking over this industry, so I quickly transitioned Haute into a full brand development agency where companies come to us to turn their brand into an empire” she explains.

Check out some of the work that Haute Agency has been a part of below:Hedley (models and video production) – “Crazy For You“Tory Lanez (models) “Traphouse“Trina (models) “F*ck Love,” ft. Tory LanezFelix Carter & Lights (models and video production) “Love Me

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Artist To Watch

Gusto sets the tone with his new track “Frozen Heart” featuring ZayZayy




While most of the population was muddled over the pandemic lockdown, this young artist saw a golden opportunity to capitalize on his free time and pursue his passion for music. In the past two years, Gusto did an incredible job tapping into the global audience through his art. Now, he has established a stable fanbase that can’t seem to get enough of his unique flow. 

On January 28th, Gusto released his latest track, “Frozen Heart,” ft. ZayZayy. This artist went the extra mile to top the success of his last single, “Pray for Me.” The new track by Gusto focuses primarily on the impact of life experiences on a person. He mentions that betrayals from close friends, loss of love, and loved ones’ death can leave lasting scars on a person’s heart. 

“Music is therapeutic for me,” mentions Gusto. “Being able to get my thoughts out through music and knowing people can relate to the things I think keeps inspired me to continue. All my life experiences continue to shape my music. As I go through different situations and learn things about life, I put that into my music.”

While developing himself as an artist and sharing his musical journey with the fans, Gusto aims to collaborate with African artists to promote his culture. He believes that a man should stay true to his roots and take life challenges head-on to achieve greatness. For Gusto, music is about connecting with other people and sharing his piece. 

The track “Frozen Heart” is available across all platforms for listeners to enjoy. Gusto is also working on new projects to bring to the fans later this year. To learn more about this blessed artist, visit his Instagram at @godsgiftgus13.

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