Maryland native Black Zheep DZ grew up on the east side of Baltimore. Easily influenced by the rap, hip-hop, and reggae music in his household, he started writing at the age of 8 years old. By age 10, Black Zheep was recording and producing his own music. Along with music, Black Zheep is involved in fashion and designing. With no interest in attending college after high school, Black Zheep was able to focus on making early accomplishments with music. Now at 20 years old he is creating a popular low buzz, locally as well as in other states and countries, with his astounding music, visuals, shows, and events he has been featured in. He is also the head of an independent label/brand/collective called “7th Floor Villains”. Black Zheep DZ has released four mixtapes in the past three years, and is currently working on new music. Take a glimpse inside Black Zheep’s world below!
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What is your music background?
BLACK ZHEEP: I was raised on many different genres of music in my household, not just hip-hop. Many of my relatives owned their own studio and I learned how to use it. It made me want to get into making music. There is a Baltimore rap artist, Tim Trees, who was getting a lot of airplay in the early 2000’s. He is my brother- in- law. I picked up a lot of pointers from him who inspired me to keep going and overstep any boundaries that neither he nor any other Baltimore artists have reached.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Why do you want to record and release your own music?
BLACK ZHEEP: I want to make a name for myself and my city. Not only that but I want to leave a legacy and live comfortably off of what I love to do.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your songs about?
BLACK ZHEEP: My songs are about different concepts. Sometimes they’re about personal feelings, sometimes real life situations, or sometimes problems that many others can relate to. Sometimes I make exactly what I like to hear and that no one else is making.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Who is your fan base directed towards?
BLACK ZHEEP: My fan base is directed towards anyone and everyone who can relate or enjoy the sound of my music. If I were to specify an age group, I would say ages 15-30 but there are kids younger who take an interest in things.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Who are your musical influences?
BLACK ZHEEP: I would have to say that Jay-Z is a huge influence. I would also say me as a person because of my experiences that make me feel like I have things to say.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How would you describe your music to people?
BLACK ZHEEP: I would describe my music as appealing and meaningful. If it isn’t the sound that you are attracted to, it will be the words. I would say it is different from a lot of other things because of my accent. Words can’t describe it; you just have to take a listen to gain an insight of imagery.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What makes you stand out from other artists?
BLACK ZHEEP: Like I said in the last question, I would say my accent and being from Baltimore, along with my own personal experiences. I would also say that my voice and how I say things make me stand out from other artists. I’m more about giving you the meaning of what I’m saying and wording it differently. Even if you don’t understand it you’ll like it because of the way that it sounds.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are some upcoming projects you are currently working on?
BLACK ZHEEP: I am currently working on a six song EP right now titled “Refugee” which is 90% finished. I also recently released a free album on May 23rd titled “Zheep”.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your career goals? Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
BLACK ZHEEP: My career goals are to change the way my own city looks at becoming a musician. I want to leave the legacy of being one of the few artists from Baltimore to inspire not only the city but the world.
In 10 years I see myself owning my own independent label called “7th Floor Villains”, still doing work behind the scenes, even ghost writing. I see myself picking back up clothing design which I was about to go to college for but then decided to focus more on music.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How can your fans access your music and contact you?
BLACK ZHEEP: You can gain access to me, my music, and all other updates at www.blackzheepdz.com. This site has every social media link to get in contact with me or check out my music.
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