Finding Black Boy Joy is a priority for Daz Rinko.
Story | Nico Blitz
Since releasing his debut EP LIFTED. (Life is For the Everyday Dreamer) in June 2016, Daz Rinko has been milking off its funkadelic sounds exemplified in “Vibe Wit Me”, “Luv Ya”, and its most popular single “Angel”. Then surprisingly enough Daz’ existence across the internet momentarily dissipated.
During his hiatus, the United States was struck with plentiful reports of police brutality, acts of racism, and the election of a president that did not receive majority vote amongst voters. In an interview with the Memphis-based rapper, he revealed that during this time he needed to formulate his voice, and his sound after simply rapping over funky beats he found on SoundCloud.
– Related: Exclusive Daz Rinko Interview (Podcast) –
In April 2017, Daz Rinko unraveled the first single off Black Boy Joy, titled “Following Love” featuring Blasko, which explains Daz being blinded by love, leading to a boatload of distractions towards his career. Though he took a similar approach in content with “Luv Ya”, the Donato-produced record proved his sound comparatively evolved with a vocal focus on low-tone singing and harmonization.
Later on in the year, we learn that Daz values much more than just romantic relationships. “SOS“, though not established at the time, became the second single off his 2017 EP that tackles police brutality and racism. He partnered with Chicago-based singer/songwriter theMIND (who’s worked with other Chi City heavy hitters like Towkio, Knox Fortune, and NoName) to evoke the fact that these social issues are also familiar to blacks in the Mid-West.
As a rapper attempting to make his way though an oversaturated industry, Daz channeled his inner demons that are thriving for money and hoes. Though he’s seemingly having a conversation with his friend on the second verse, he reveals he’s actually talking to himself — an excellent verse that provides self-reflection on the temptations of the industry.
“Liam Gallagher is one of my favorites. I touch on things that were going through my mind while making the project,” Daz Rinko said. “When I’m talking to my friend in the verses, it’s actually me on the other end.”
However, despite the tragedies in his relationships, dealing with day-to-day racism, and an industry that can easily steer him down a dark path, Rinko manages to find his Black Boy Joy through Jesus, as explained in EP’s final record “Blessings from Above”. His resolution to this problematic world comes from his faith constantly reminding himself “get on up, you gon’ be somebody”.
This resolution is even depicted in Black Boy Joy‘s cover art. He could have easily picked a dark cover that depicts his pain, sorrow, and anger while making this project. Choosing a cover reminiscent of Tyler, the Creator’s Flower Boy reveals Daz’ undying optimistic outlook on life.
“When it was time to do a cover art I wanted something eye catching, and I wanted to give off a peaceful black boy image. Oh, and I love flowers.”
Black Boy Joy is available here for purchase and streaming.