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In this edition of FDL: A new album and interview with an artist that XXL calls “a movement ready to blow”. Featuring production from Thomas Barfod and Ludwig Goransson, Floating While Dreaming is the new, acclaimed album release from Pell, a singer and emcee hailing from New Orleans, LA.
“I push myself to be better than my last release by learning something new everyday. I’ll always use everyday experiences to help me grow as an artist as well as a human being.”
Download Pell’s new BitTorrent Bundle to get his new album Floating While Dreaming for free. Enter your email to unlock two unreleased singles and three HD music videos.
Packing a deft flow and singing voice with a timbre so unique that it almost sounds hauntingly familiar, Pell has been a regular feature in major hip-hop trades as of late, including recent features from Complex, Vibe, The FADER, and Noisey. Pell took a few minutes to chat with us on this hazy Friday afternoon while traveling to his next show on his current Midwest tour.
Words with Pell: Tales of the Come Up
BitTorrent: In what ways has New Orleans impacted your sound; your brand? What other places and artists do you count as influences?
Pell: I think New Orleans has impacted me more as an individual than as a musician. I have been exposed to the culture down there and I love it, but I want to bring something new to the scene there as well as everywhere else. I feel as though the the east and west coasts have both been huge influences, just as much as the south honestly. I have been influenced by Kanye West, Lupe Fiasco, Erykah Badu, and Stevie Wonder mostly.
BitTorrent: Would you consider yourself a rapper who sings or a singer who raps? You have an incredible voice and a equally impressive flow, which is unique for an artist these days. Do you find that’s a challenge as much as it’s gift? Are hip hop listeners slow to embrace a rapper who sings?
Pell: Sometimes I feel like a singer, other times I feel like a rapper, but the end result is always my art. I would consider myself an artist. I’m not sure what comes before the other, but I know when I create the result will is going to be magic. I find it as more of a gift because I’m not limited to approaching a track a specific kind of way. I can come on it however I feel. It’s interesting because hip hop listeners are a little hesitant at times to listen to someone who sings and raps, but you can definitely persuade them to pay attention by being honest to your sound.
BitTorrent: Every time we chat, you are either going out on the road, or have just returned from a tour. How has your tour schedule impacted how you release music? Does an artist have to continuously release new music to keep fans’ attention? How do you push yourself to make the next record better than the last?
Pell: I feel my tour schedule has enhanced my subject matter because I’m exposed to more things on a daily basis than usual, but I don’t think it effects my release schedule much. I don’t think an artist has to continuously release new music to keep his/her fans – if anything you wouldn’t want to overwhelm your listeners with too much of a good thing. You would want them to get the product when it’s time for them to, and you’ll know when it’s time. I push myself to be better than my last release by learning something new everyday. I’ll always use everyday experiences to help me grow as an artist as well as a human being.
BitTorrent: Your video production as of late is on point. I know you have a pretty small, tightly-knit team that you roll with. How involved are you in the production of your records, both audio and video? How important is it for a young artist to invest back into your brand?
Pell: I’m highly involved in the production of my records. I select every beat I use and place on a project. Most of the production you hear is created while I’m in studio with the producer. As far as the video production, I usually draft up a treatment with my team and have someone direct it. There have been a few times when I reached out for video treatments just to expand one idea into something greater. As an artist that’s working with a team as small as ours, it’s awesome to invest in myself completely and watch the benefits roll in. It feels too rewarding.
BitTorrent: You’ve got some pretty exciting projects on deck to follow up the new album. How do you see your style progressing, as you look towards the next project?
Pell: I don’t want to give any spoilers away. But I’m trying to turn heads with every release from here on out! Expect the unexpected.
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