Bazzi shares inspiration behind his latest mixtape; Soul Searching.
Bazzi shares inspiration behind his latest mixtape; Soul Searching.
First hitting the airwaves in 2016 with single "Alone," Andrew Bazzi (better known as just Bazzi) has since established himself as an artist to watch. With releasing a string of ballads exploring themes of love and heartbreak, Bazzi carved out a niche of his own; And in turn garnered an impressive following along with the hearts of women across the world. But lovestruck no more, he peels back another layer with sharing his journey of self-discovery and how it inspired his most honest and personal project to date.
VMAN sits down with Bazzi to talk soul searching, evolving as an artist, and what the future holds for him. Read the exclusive conversation below.
Hi Bazzi! We are super excited to talk to you about this new chapter you are embarking on with your music.
I'm super excited about this release as well. Soul Searching is a really important step in my career. It’s a more mature step for me [in terms of] the things I'm talking about. I mean it's just growth, you know like sonically and spiritually. It's me growing up a little bit and talking about things that are more pressing in my life other than when I was a kid, kind of running around like falling in love. So yeah, so spiritually it different and sonically it's different. I am really excited for people to hear it.
Would you say you with this sort of maturity that you've channeled into like you know you're upcoming release? Like how would you describe it? Do you get a little more serious about your subject matter is it like political?
I think it's more serious in the sense of I am talking a lot about myself and the things I've gone through. And what I've realized from the first run at putting out music is you know how important it was...I mean I was just making songs without thinking about anybody. But then I put it out and I saw how I was talking about these stories and talking about the issues created some sort of community for people. So with new music, I wanted to talk about things that were you know not just about love. You know that was about myself and stuff that was a little bit more general for people to connect to. So yeah it's more retrospective for sure.
Yeah. Well, I asked if the album or the release is more political because listening to a song like caught in a fire. I definitely got a good sense of like urgency. I don't know if that's like an accurate read on the song.
Yeah. For sure. That's a really accurate read on it. I'd say on this one I kind of left off some of the political tones just because I'm personally trying to think about how I want to talk on that because it's so messy. It's such a disaster right now, it's so ugly. It's like I want to be able to have some sort of productive approach to it rather than just pissing on the world and not having a solution. You know what I am saying? I wanted to leave that out and kind of build a lot of substantive approaches, so when I talk about it I'm not just going to be like Debbie Downer I'm going to have some sort of solution or something productive quality to add over it. Which I don't have right now. I think right now all I have towards the idea of that is just frustration and anger. So when I can come up with something a little more to communicate...I think I'll bring it back.
When you were creating the mixtape, were there any that stood out to you?
The tenth song on the project is a song called "Conversations With Myself" and half of the song is me literally speaking, like preaching. The first half is just like a spoken-word type feel—actual conversations with myself—but it's a dark song. Basically, there's a part of the song where it goes; "Sometimes I think about a younger me. He'd be proud of the man he sees. I guess I'm rich. I made it out my town played it from the thousands. You know, shut it down. Look little Bazzi I'm living out our dreams. Mama cry every time we on the TV. Got a fancy car, got a fancy crib and you couldn't even dream of this girl that I am with. That's how we would remember all of our idols and the people that we love? I met 'em at a party, we were all doing drugs. (Laughs) It goes into this crazy thing where it's like none of that [stuff] is making me happy basically. That's what I wanted as a kid, that was like what I lived for, you know? Then you get it and it's like you realize [it's not what you wanted].
Yeah for sure. No that's great. I think that's a really powerful example. Like your evolution is like a musician and as a songwriter. I want to ask you about the name of the mixtape; Soul Searching. Did you go through that kind of a process in sort of creating or before creating your album?
I think I've been I've been making a lot of music. There's a whole other little vibe that I'm sitting on right now but all the songs on Soul Searching just kind of favored that side. I felt this retrospective, linear thread going through all this music so it felt like it was separate from the other [stuff] I've been working on. All of those songs were days where I was really searching. Those were days where I was really just asking Why. [These] songs just connected to each other and I wanted to make the project out of it.
Totally! Would you call soul searching a departure? Or more so just like you know still you, just at a different time with different experiences.
I wouldn't call it a departure. I like that reference, I'll call it more of a detour. I'm still kind of headed to the same place, but I had to pull off the road for a sec to talk about some stuff. It's still Bazzi [though]. One thing I've realized about myself is I make the music I like. With Soul Searching I'm talking about different stuff and there's a level of different emotions on display as well.
Tell me a little bit about some of the collaborations—I believe there's one with 21 Savage and 6lack?
I'm really excited about the 6lack one because I think he kind of hit it on the head. That song is once again a very retrospective one. I think out of all the songs on the project, "Fallin'" kind of has the most communitive energy to it—like something that people can really buy into. It's something that everybody feels. I know everyone feels it cause it's such a specific emotion to myself. That's one of my favorite things about music, too, you get to talk about things that are so personal and realize how common they actually are.
I don’t know if you think about the future in this sort of way but what is the vision for your future? You mentioned that this project is kind of like a detour, where do you hope the road leads you?
Honestly looking at the future, I really try not to think ahead. One of the things I've realized in the soul-searching process is that being present makes me happy. Thinking ahead gives me anxiety and thinking in the past makes me sad. So I just try to be super present. I realize when I put effort into being present and in the moment and appreciating the things around me—things just tend to kind of work out on their own. I kind of move in the right direction. I'm going to be present, I'm going to keep doing what I love. I'm going to make great music. I'm going to make great art. And you know wherever that takes me, I think it's the right place.
Listen to Bazzi’s latest project Soul Searching Below