Miami hip-hop artist Dlaurend is gear up to release his newest collection of recordings on Itunes. These tracks are heavy, yet smooth, and woven over a backbeat that just doesn’t quit. Dlaurend pulls no stops, allows no quarter, gives no room for competition. He does not imitate, and his sound, which may even be too fine for the modern era’s tin ear, is entirely unique to him.
Dlaurend Young started singing at the tender age of sixteen, and had already garnered the attention of the music industry in the Miami, Florida, area, which is a highly competitive and unforgiving hip hop scene. Nevertheless, the music of Dlaurend stands out against the usual backdrop of homogeneous hip hop, a trait that has alienated him from major labels whom are too scared to release anything but the same-old, same-old. His music mixes the cool, harmonic sweetness of Boyz II Men with the groove of artists such as New Edition, and a subtler funk hearkening to Prince.
His loops are background music, not melodies, and his beats are rhythm, not the showing-off of a flashy percussionist. His music reminds one of the tasteful hip hop of the late eighties and early-mid nineties, when hip-hop hit a stride in its quality that stretched from the rawness of gangsta rap to the undeniable expertise found in performers like Seal and Brian McKnight. His sound is sonorous and soulful, executed with patience, precision and tact. His lyrics are heartfelt, honest, earnest, and natural. His lines are full of conviction and steadfastness. Upon being asked about the content of his lyrics, Dlaurend has said his music “reflects love, heartbreak and the celebrations of life.” These themes are perhaps his most permeating topics, but they are far from his only ones.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What city and state are you from?
DLAUREND YOUNG: My name is Dlaurend Young, I was originally born in Tallahassee, Florida and then move to central Florida. Later, I resided in Miami and was introduced to the art of making music.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What is your music background?
DLAUREND YOUNG: As student I was in band where I started playing the trombone and then started playing the drums, but I have always just dabbled with playing the keyboard. I understand and read music, so I try to play different instruments whenever I can.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Why do you want to record and release your own music?
DLAUREND YOUNG: I want to release my own album because I feel that I have a story to tell. I want people to remember what real singing sounds like, along with real substance. I haven’t heard any artist coming from a perspective like me, which is two working parents, still married today. I was not deprived of opportunities and I think that is cool. I miss the days when you had to have a hot album and not just a hot single. I am going to make an attempt to change that because as a customer first, I demand that. Now as an artist I feel anyone that purchases my album deserves nothing less than that.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your songs about?
DLAUREND YOUNG: My music is about actual account of feeling and stages in my life. I talk about the time when I cheated as evident in my song “Don’t Take Your Love Away” and I talk about being faithful and needing my girlfriend to trust as in the song “She Ain’t U”. There is no subject that is off the table as long I have personally experienced it or a close friend has opened up to me about it. Then, there are my songs “Pray For Men and “Champion” that reassure my spirituality and a constant strive to inspire people. I just say what is really in my heart and life’s travels.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Who are your musical influences?
DLAUREND YOUNG: My musical influences are Prince, New Edition, Terence Trent D’arby, Elton John, Keith Sweat, Marvin Gaye, Teddy Pendergrass, Simply Red, and Michael Jackson just to name a few. It is so many great artist that I can say contribute to my approach to creating a new song or even just not being afraid to put my real feeling in my lyrics.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How would you describe your music to people?
DLAUREND YOUNG: The best way to describe my music is, that real R&B that has a timeless appeal, whether you are young or old you can relate to it. Then I bring a hip hop swagger to the music with my delivery and subject content and everything is comes together with a Pop appeal, also known as R&B Hip Hop music with a Pop appeal.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What makes you stand out from other artists?
DLAUREND YOUNG: I feel that I stand out from other artists first and foremost because there is not another me. I don’t try to go with the trends that have everyone sounding like each other. I feel that I have a very unique and original sound. I am in my own lane, and I don’t believe anyone can do what I do better
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Tell us about one of the hardest challenges you had to face in your music career and how did you overcome?
DLAUREND YOUNG: One of my biggest challenge was to just have the confidence to really believe I could create a song that people would like enough to know and learn the words to. It was very hard to put my heart into something that I was so insecure about, especially when at times the people I surrounded myself with were less than supportive. My confidence and determination really got tested, but I am a firm believer that persistence out lasts resistance, and I was persistent. With all those feelings I was feeling during that time, I developed an all about me attitude. I made my circle smaller and really focused on my music. Then I just said to myself all I need is one stranger to like my music, and I would be happy. That stranger was going to be my motivation. However, I got more than just one stranger and even radio stations. Once that happened my creativity just went to another level because now I had my confidence.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are some upcoming projects that you are currently working on?
DLAUREND YOUNG: Right now, I am working on completing my album. That is my top priority at the moment and making sure that my official introduction to the public is a very well done album that people will demand to hear more of the story. I also have a few very talented artist that I am looking to sign under my label once all the paperwork in order. I just don’t want to be an artist that just takes and not give something back. Power is in numbers and if my entire team is experiencing success of some kind, I know we could be a force and create a new era of music.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your career goals? Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
DLAUREND YOUNG: My ultimate goal is to be able to say I own the label with the number one artist. Ten years from now, I want to be able to say my music still is relevant. I want new artists to remake my songs. I think that would be the ultimate show of gratitude for my contribution to the art of R&B.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How can your fans access your music and contact you?
DLAUREND YOUNG: The people that appreciate my music can reach me at the following links
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