By | Samantha Bergeson
Your summer is not complete without listening to Connor Evans. The smooth-voiced rapper croons good vibes to match his good looks. But most importantly, Evans knows how to relax.
The Coachella Valley-raised artist moved to the Virgin Islands to explore his musical talents, working with a shaman to experience an enlightened artistic element. His 2016 breakout album The Vibe incorporates his centered meditative approach with catchy lyrics and chill beats.
“Growing up in Southern California inspired my music, but it was my time in the Virgin Islands that birthed ‘The Vibe’ which I consider to be my best work to date,” Evans said.
Evans, the talented singer with BET Music Matters and featured on Zak Downtown and Taylor Gang tracks, was destined to pursue music. With a DJ father, musician uncle, and classic rock enthusiast mother, Evans draws from a variety of inspirations. “Music is something I felt my parents had a connection with, and from a young age I gravitated towards it,” Evans said. “I guess it runs in my blood.”
But it was when his brother introduced him to West Coast hip-hop like N.W.A. that Evans found his calling as a rapper. “It just just kind of blossomed from there,” Evans said. “Once I found hip-hop, it king of changed my life.”
Today, his main musical influence is Kanye West. “No one else can make an album as complete and incredible as that man. He’s reinvented himself over and over again, project to project. He pushed culture forward,” Evans admired. His favorite Kanye track is “Last Call” from College Dropout. “Any time I need motivation, I spin that track,” Evans said.
Evans’ own work is also versatile, offering a diverse take on modern music. Each song discusses elements of faith, love, and sex– “the three most powerful emotions,” as Evans explained. “It’s the balance between those three that makes us who we are.”
Singles like “American Bandstand” and “Go” offer a twist on reggae styles with infectious hooks. His personal favorite though is “No Stress.” The impressive track has addictive lyrics (I don’t need no stress, no stress/I’ve been feeling blessed no less) and carries a message typical of the enlightened rapper. Evans wrote the song after his first experience with ecstasy. “I had a revelation that I was causing all my own problems myself,” Evans mused. “I was stressing myself out. Everything I was really getting down about was self-inflicted. I’m not going to stress about that shit anymore.”
Evans surely shouldn’t stress about his future. His talent is definitely here to stay. “In five years I want my first platinum album. I want to be running billboard charts,” Evans said. “I want to be dominating the industry. Period.”
Evans even hopes to write for artists in other genres to show a different side to himself. “I think I have the ability to write songs for people who may be more capable of delivering records that might not be me,” Evans said. “You can do different things for different ones and come up with a different styles for each based on their voice.” Such artists he hopes to collaborate with include Alessia Cara, Calvin Harris, and Arianna Grande.
The Vibe has been featured in USA Today, Yahoo! Music, NahRight, VIBE, and HipHopDX, praising Evans’ summer album. The collection was produced by Bryson Tiller and Kevin Gates producer The Cratez. The Vibe is available on iTunes and Soundcloud.
Remember the name Connor Evans.