Stov Da CEO: Interview With Small World LA

Stov Da CEO: Interview With Small World LA

What inspired you to pursue a career in music, and when did you first realize you wanted to be a musician?


Growing up my two favorite passions were sports and music. I pursued sports my whole life and kind of used music as a hobby or something fun to keep me entertained. My first real studio session was in LA early 2020 and I made my first song in 20 minutes. I thought it was normal but everyone in the room look amazed like it was different. After that day I kind of saw a future in it and started to fall in love with it

What are some of the biggest challenges you've faced as an emerging artist, and how have you overcome them?


I would say creating my image and coming from a small town. Transitioning from an athlete to an artist is hard because people view you as this person who is supposed to be all about sports. Clean image, dress a certain way, can’t party too much. But while I was playing sports I still did all of those things, I just had to hide it for the most part. So to most people I’m changing my image but in reality I’m finally embracing it. Also coming from a small town. It’s hard because sometimes there’s a lot of negativity because there isn’t a platform or outlet to help push artists. So it’s alot of misdirection but I just recently made the move to Dallas, TX which has helped me network and connect with bigger names to help push me as an artist. 

Who are some of your biggest musical influences, and how have they shaped your sound and style?


I would say Drake because of the versatility. It’s easy to be one demensional in music and have one specific sound, but when you create music for the entire world then you will last forever and it’s about longevity. I also would say the Detroit rappers. There’s a bunch that I could name but during the pandemic when I started taking it serious they had a sound that gradually caught on to the world and it was a free flow that allowed you just talk about whatever and make it entertaining. 

How do you approach the songwriting process, and where do you draw inspiration from for your lyrics and melodies?


Everything that I write about comes from experiences and things that I’m familiar with. So if I feel like I don’t have anything to write about or if I’m stuck on a song I try to go live more. Take a trip or get outside and do something different. This allows me to see new things and hear stuff from others that can create lyrics that I put together. I draw Melodie’s from the vibe I’m feeling. So if life is really uptempo (partying, club scene) I gravitate more towards the high energy songs. If I’m dealing with a-lot of pain and depression in life then where more of the melodic/auto tune songs come into play.

What can listeners expect from your upcoming album or project, and how does it differ from your previous work?


My next big project coming up is “Brief Business”. I’ve been working on this for 2 years. It’s technically not an album but the way I’m putting it together I want it to give off an album feel. This project will have every type of sound you can think of when it comes to Hip-Hop/Rap/R&B. Basically telling the story about how my life has shifted in the last two years from becoming a professional football player to a full-time artist. 

How has your background or life experiences influenced your music and artistic vision?


My background has a great influence on my music because I’ve probably lived every situation in life. I grew up in a very diverse environment so I can relate to many different genres and groups of people. A lot of people try to make music for different crowds and it doesn’t come off natural. Everything I’ve ever created has come from me being who I am and it’s just created with that energy . 

Can you talk about a particularly memorable or inspiring performance you've had, and what made it special?


I’ve only had one performance at Small Tour 3. It was obviously special since it was my first one. But what made it real special was that I flew to LA from Dallas and performed in front of a crowd who had no idea who I was. Seeing their reaction to my music and feeling the energy that was created from my performance gave me a better outlook on my work. 


What do you hope listeners take away from your music, and what message do you want to convey through your art?


I hope listeners can engage in my music to connect on all levels. If they need motivation, I have something for it. If they need an extra push in the gym, I have something for it. If they need to get ready for the club, I have something for it. If they have a 5 hour road trip ahead, I have something for the entire ride. My message is living YOUR life how you see it through yours eyes because that’s how I create my music.

How has the music industry changed since you first started, and how have you adapted to those changes as an artist?


The music industry has changed A-LOT since I first started. When I first started it was much easier to engage with others on social media. Now the algorithm has changed so you really have to grind to get in front of the people you need too. The pandemic created a lot of artists which can be a good and bad thing. It motivated me more because I had to put in the extra work separate myself from the pack. I had to take my content more serious. I had to put more hours in the studio. I had to understand the algorithm and how I can fit into it to maximize my work. 

What advice would you give to other emerging artists who are just starting out in the industry?


The best advice I can give is put yourself in the room. Social media is great for marketing and advertising. But now a days it’s a lot of fake stuff you see on the internet. People will be more moved from your vibe and can get a real view from you when they connect with you in person. Also putting yourself in the room will allow you to learn and grow as an artists. Small shows, podcasts, interviews are all stepping stones to help build confidence and give the people more than just some music on a platform. 

- Stov Da CEO 
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