“My music is a vibe,” Ty Dolla $ign says. “It’s R&B that you can fuck to, not make love to.” No games. It’s sonic Spanish fly. Play it loud enough with the right alchemy of illicit substances and it could incite an orgy.
Right now, the Atlantic Records artist might be the hottest singer in LA. His breakout mixtape, 2012’s Beach House gets nastier than Luther Campbell or Nate Dogg ever wanted to be. Drugs, sex, and stripper booty popping. Just the finer things in life.
His hit single “My Cabana” was not only last summer’s 24-7 party anthem, it figures to be played in every pool and beachside cabana from here until the liquor finally runs out (or no more people can fit in).
“Beach House is definitely who I am, so I’m talking that shit,” Ty says. “It’s everything that I’ve lived in life. It’s bringing that R&B and soul with a slap.”
Don’t trip on the subject matter, Ty writes some of the most well crafted and melodic pop songs you hear on the radio. Y.G. is signed to Def Jam and is one of the most popular street rappers in LA, but it wasn’t until Ty wrote and produced his hit “Toot it and Boot it”, that he earned radio airplay.
Welcome to the omnivorous world of the South Central-raised star born, Tyrone Griffin. Music is in his blood. His father was in the funk band Lakeside (“Fantastic Voyage”) and an uncle was in the Isley Brothers. Ty has been creating music since he was a three-year old writing lyrics and playing a keyboard. Since then, he’s taught himself how to play the drums, bass guitar, electric and acoustic guitar, the violin, the piano, and the Wurlitzer organ.
“I can play music with the wall and some pencils,” Ty says. “I want to leave people with incredible and timeless music, it’s a soundtrack to people’s lives. I want to get better every time. I really take pride in my sound.”
Complex hailed him as “a less self-serious version of The Weeknd…one of the most promising artists to work in this R&B Kelly-style R&B vein since The-Dream first broke.” The magazine also named his forthcoming Atlantic Records full-length, Free TC as one of 2013’s Most Anticipated.
But Ty might be the most eclectic artist of his peers. His inspirations go way deeper than just R&B. Ella Fitzgerald, 2Pac, Prince, Michael Jackson and Nirvana are as important to his conception of sound as Mint Condition and Brian McKnight. So is contemporary electronic music. If anything, Ty Dolla $ign might be heir to DJ Quik’s title of America’s most complete artist.
This is why he’s collaborated with everyone from top 40 perennials like Wiz Khalifa and Chris Brown, to West Coast hood stars like Y.G. and Joe Moses. And in the immediate future, Beach House 2 is adding a sundeck, Jacuzzi, and more bad chicks to the cabana.
“It’s just the next step—some club joints, some slower ones. I’m saying things that every man feels. It’s going to get a lot of people laid this summer,” Ty says. “But I’ve stepped up the music and production, the singing and the videos. You’ll see.”