Words: Amir Najib
“IF YOU DON’T KNOW… NOW YOU KNOW” (The Notorious B.I.G., 1994)
Image via: Nicha Rivera
SOUND: Trap, Rap
FEELING: Chill, Psychedelic
"88Glam might be one of the first to break out of just the Canadian market and be known globally with their distinctive accent and sound"
Although they might have a form of popularity in their native country of Canada, the rap duo 88Glam who comprise of 88 Camino and Derek Wise deserve more recognition than they get. With their distinct Canadian accent and production that is almost trance inducing, they stick out from their contemporaries.
Rappers such as Drake, Tory Lanez and Nav all have an American accent when rapping, which is something that they might not be able to control. However, if you look at it from a different perspective, it might be detrimental for the Canadian hip-hop scene as there is no defined sound, but 88Glam might be one of the first to break out of just the Canadian market and be known globally with their distinctive accent and sound.
A song that shows this is their collaboration with another rising Atlanta rapper Lil Keed on the song Bankroll. In this song they rap about women coming into their life and trying to use them for their newfound money. They incorporate Toronto slang terms such as ‘mans’ etc, with their accent this adds to the authenticity that they have as they are not altering the way they talk. Toronto slang has often been compared to British slang, which I think is a potential gateway for more people from the UK to listen to them.
In 2017 they got signed to XO which is a joint label between Republic records and the Weeknd. Within 3 years they released 2 projects which performed well in Canada but not anywhere else. Which takes us to 2020 where they have parted ways with XO and are now independent, the reasons unknown but this may be a blessing in disguise as 2020 has started off well for them.
One of their songs from their last project 88Glam 2 has gained a lot of momentum, because of the phenomenon that is Tik Tok. The song in question being Lil Boat, this song is upbeat and talks about how they are now seeing more success in the music industry and because of that they have bought jewellery, which makes them feel like Lil Boat which is a nickname for popular rapper Lil Yachty, who is known for his outlandish jewellery. It is now their most popular song with 70 million streams on Spotify. This is showing the power that apps such as Tik Tok have on artists careers.
Although they have a song that is blowing up, I hope that people take time to look at their catalogue and appreciate them for their bodies of work such as their new project New Mania which came out last week, or their original self-titled mixtape and not just for their one song, as this will build a stable fanbase globally and not just locally.
& IF YOU DON’T KNOW… NOW YOU KNOW.