When somebody tells you that showbiz is a tough business to be in, it’s for good reason. It’s not enough to be the best singer, actor or musician – without the proper exposure, nobody will know. You can practice everyday of every week but you still need to get out there and find your audience. Once you do get discovered though, all that practice and dedication will pay off but the hard work will have to continue. There’s always someone else standing in line to jump at the opportunity if you’re not willing to work hard enough for it. Still sound easy? The entertainment industry is so competitive, that many quit and give up on their dreams shortly after they jump for it. Because if your dream is to be successful in entertainment, it starts with a plan.
Big Dreams is music artist, Slim Flex’s latest track. It drops October 23rd on all platforms. Slim Flex is Canada’s leading Afrobeat artist and the Canadian African Entertainment Artist of The Year.
Making his home in Toronto, Slim has made his mark as one of the top Afro-Urban artists in Canada. Slim’s love for performing music originated from his church roots in Ghana, West Africa. With those roots deeply engrained, Slim moved to Toronto bringing with him a style that was rarely heard in North America – Afrobeat’s meets Western Music. Music that makes you feel good. Music that lifts you up. It started with his first breakthrough album, Odehyea (Royalty) followed by ‘Confessions of A Boss. Powerful vocals and a commanding stage presence quickly cemented Slim as owning the genre’ he holds close to his heart.
In 2018, Slim partnered with record label, Diet Monkey Entertainment Inc. The label took his music globally and the artists popularity and vision soared to new commercial heights reaching people from all backgrounds. In 2018 Slim and DME wrote and produced the album Gifted. The multi-talented artist debuted his producing skills on the track, I’m A Boss and Higher, which ranked #1 on the Canadian Reggae charts. Slim was joined forces with Juno award winning reggae artist, Kirk Diamond, Ghanaian super producer – Apya and others.
If you’d like to hear his amazing Afrobeat track, Big Dreams and become a fan then follow the link below. I did… and it led me to searching out more of his music. Slim Flex’s music will invigorate you, it will inspire and remind you that life is beautiful.
Slim and I had a great opportunity to talk recently and I am so grateful for it. Here’s how that went…
“Your music has a very uplifting sound to it. Is that a conscious choice or do you also sing about hard times/bad times/sad times?”
“It really depends and is based on the mood. When I get inspired to write uplifting songs, I write uplifting songs and when I get inspired to write about serious issues affecting the world, I also get inspired to write those songs – I don’t just write one style of music. I try to stay as open minded as I can when I’m writing and when people come across my music. It might be about a party, it might be talking about love or it might be to inspire people. I try to give the audience what they’re looking for.”
“What is the main message in your new track, Big Dreams?”
“Since dropping my last album, Gifted two years ago – this is the first song I wanted to make to inspire people to focus on their dreams, especially in times like this, where Covid-19 is crushing everyone’s dreams. I thought it would be wise to create a song reflecting the current environment we’re in. It’s encouraging people to get out and work hard to achieve their dreams. Try not to worry if you’re not successful today because tomorrow might be the day it happens.”
“Is Big Dreams going to be part of an album?”
“I don’t know yet, that would be up to management. We’re just working on singles right now but maybe in a year or two we might put them together on an album.”
“Did you want to give a shout out to the studio where you made the track?”
“This track was actually produced in Ghana, West Africa. I was there last year and had a chance to work with an engineer, Tex Mex. He gave me the beat and we worked on the message together. I then wrote the lyrics – so big shout out to Tex Mex in Ghana and my management team/record label, Diet Monkey Entertainment for producing it.”
“When did you know you wanted to be a singer?”
“It’s been part of my fabric since I was a young kid, all the way back to six years old – singing at my grandmothers church. When I went to boarding school, I was able to hear other forms of music other than Christian music. I was introduced to rap, I was introduced to dancehall and while I was at the boarding house I learned to harness my gift by singing in the church service for the school. Whenever they would have entertainment night, I would go and try to rap other artist’s songs, copywritten songs and entertainment in general. When I came to Canada, I saw a real need to put my talent to use. I soon came to realize, when it came to African music there was really nothing here, so I wanted to try and fill that void. I began collaborating with other local artists creating Hip Hop and introducing the African sound. I started incorporating it into the R&B, the Hip Hop and that’s where we are now. Wherever you go in Canada, you are destined to hear an Afrobeat song. It took us a long time but we are making progress and I’m proud to be part of the group that helped to propagate that agenda.”
“When you collaborate with other music artists, what do you look for, that makes you want to work them?”
“For me, its about connection and content. First and foremost, the person has to have the talent – in terms of voice, being musically inclined and knowing what music is all about. I’m very musical, so I look for people that have the same taste and can bring something to the table. When we meet, a connection has to be there and the chemistry is going to propel the project when it’s done to get maximum exposure. Those are the things I look for.”
“How long did it take to make this song in the studio?”
“It didn’t take too long – maybe less than an hour for the vocals but it took me two days to write it and about 35-45 mins to record it.”
“Where do you get the inspiration for your songs?”
“First and foremost, all my inspiration comes from God. If he never gave me the brain for my vision, I wouldn’t be able to create the music. Everyone has big dreams and wants to become something in the future. I’ve already dedicated 10-11 years of my life to music and I still haven’t seen that big bang that I was hoping to see and I needed something to encourage me to keep going. It’s a matter of time and trusting the process. This song was about writing something to encourage myself and others. I have another song – Higher, which I wrote when my career was taking off. I wanted a song to remind me to always reach higher and to keep reaching. When you listen to my love songs, I’m telling a story about a relationship that someone told me about or its about my own experience. Reading a lot really helps to expand your vocabulary and construct your grammar. When you read, it opens your mind and puts more arsenals in your head to work with.”
“What is the biggest compliment somebody gave you about your music?”
“One time I was attending a function in Montreal and an older couple walked up and started to thank me. The lady had told me – if it wasn’t for my song, our marriage wouldn’t have lasted and we wouldn’t be together. They said my songs had kept their marriage together… it was about 7 years ago. I was much younger then and to hear that from an older couple was so inspiring for me. I do hear a lot of nice things from other people as well. Many will tell me that ‘my music sounds better than some of the other people out there, why don’t we hear more from you?’ When you hear that, you feel down because it shows you the potential you have but you also realize you can reach higher and do more. When you’re being compared to A-list performers and others that are already successful, it’s a very commendable compliment.”
“Where has been your favourite city to perform in?”
“My favourite city to perform in would be Accra in Ghana. I was performing there in December and every radio and TV appearance I made was very well received. It was an extremely good venture for me.”
“Are you the only music artist in your family?”
“To be honest, I recently found out that my mom, who has passed away – was a great singer and performed with some of the A-list artists back in the day. I also came to learn that my sister is also a great singer of Christian music. So, it is great to know that I’m not alone.”
“What type of advice would you like to offer to new music artists?”
“Rule #1 – believe in yourself, #2 – work on yourself, work on your craft until you don’t need any introduction and work, work, work until you know what to do automatically. If you want to make it, it takes a lot of hard work. You also have to trust the process and listen to advice. When you are thrown to the wolves on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify and people are streaming for you – then you will know your true weight. Don’t let small success go to your head, keep working on those successes until it is concrete and, as I like to say – ‘you cannot be denied entry anywhere you go’. Work hard and pray to whoever you believe in because prayers do work.”
“Since Covid -19 has stopped live performances, how has that impacted your life and your career?”
“It’s impacted it both positively and negatively. On the positive side, although there has been a pandemic, I’ve been able to get involved with a Covid-19 organization to perform some shows. It was a great platform that allowed me to showcase my talents. As an artist, it has also given me more time to work on my writing, work in the studio, discover new sounds and develope myself as a whole – so when the doors re-open, I will be ready to face any battle that is out there. When it comes to the negatives; if you rely on music for survival, it’s very hard because you can’t go out and perform for crowds and make money. With all the venues being closed, you also cannot gauge how well your music is being received. The worst of it, is that you can’t travel anywhere. We were planning to shoot a video in Cuba but because of Covid-19, it’s no longer safe to travel. I know other artists are feeling it too – we are not able to get out there to express who we are.”
Support our diverse Canadian talent so that they can continue to create something we can all benefit from and then thank me later.
If you’d like to connect with Slim Flex, you can do so by: