“Don’t give up and stay focused. There’s going to be long nights and sacrifices you will have to make if you’re truly serious about this.”
Check out the interview with Montario exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
SKILLY: Tell us where this all began. What is your history in the music scene?
MONTARIO: Well, I was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado but moved to Indianapolis when I was about 3 or 4. Music was always a part of my life my mom would always play old-school hip-hop like LL Cool J, Tupac, A Tribe Called Quest, Bell Biv Devoe. But I used to not hate rap, but just didn’t understand the hype around it until we moved to the east side of town. Before we moved there all I listened to was alternative rock, so I was about 12 or 13 when I found my love for rap because I discovered Drake when he released his first tape “Room For Improvement”.
That made me do my research and start making music myself so when I was 14 I made my first tape called “Rising Legend”. Haha only made about five copies of it honestly just to experiment with it. Fast forward to now I’ve released somewhere around 25-40 mixtapes, 12 EPs, and 1 album. 7 almost 8 years since coming into this game and now I’m seeing results.
What are the best ways to promote yourself as an artist? Any tips you can give us?
Consistency. Constantly release content especially if you are just starting. Always record more than you need for a project. Say you got a project and there’s only going to be 10 songs on it, record 15-30. Just so you have records to leak to promote yourself. Especially now we have access to social media. Work and be hungry if you have friends or trying to start a collective have them promote to get a team going. Reach out to other artists too.
What do you ultimately want to become in your career?
I want to become one of the greatest. I want to be put on the same pedestal as Pac or Biggie. And have more net worth than Dr.Dre haha as well as one day create a record label bigger than what Death Row, Roc Nation, and Sony have put together…the biggest powerhouse the industry has ever seen.
What is the hardest thing about being in the music business?
Honestly, believing in yourself. Because you see people who just started making music getting more money than you, a bigger fanbase than you and they came out of thin air. When you been grinding your whole life for this and feel stagnant.
What is it like in your city? What is the music scene like, and how is it like living there overall?
Man haha, my city is lit honestly you never know what’s going to happen. I wouldn’t trade where I grew up at for nothing. Our music scene is amazing, so much potential out here like if we all worked together we could cause a bigger wave than Atlanta, Florida, New York, and California are causing right now. Like we all have different sounds you got me the proclaimed HRTBRK RCKSTR, Poindexter he’s like energetic as hell but versatile, the entire BBB collective, Drayco McCoy, We R Ent collective, Sidmfkid even though he moved to Colorado, and Devon Trill. You can’t compare our sounds whatsoever we all make music for different demographics.
But living here man honestly it’s a good city but something gots to give because I’m tired of losing friends here most people honestly don’t make to 18 but if they do they get complacent. I’m going to always ride for my city, first thing I want to do when I make it big is build another homeless shelter and donate to all the schools I went to for Elementary, Middle, and High school.
What are some of the advice you can give and share with other artists who are still trying to come up?
Don’t give up and stay focused. There’s going to be long nights and sacrifices you will have to make if you’re truly serious about this. You will cry, you will take some losses but the rewards are more tremendous than you can imagine. A little quote I live by with this is something my grandpa told me,”To climb to the top, you may fall a few times but if you get back up it’ll be worth it.”
What is the best thing that’s ever happened in your career?
Finally dropping my debut album haha, that took forever to get up off the ground.
What is your inspiration?
My mom, most definitely she’s the strongest person I know. I do everything for her and my little sister seeing them smile gives me the push I need to move forward.
Do you feel anyone can be successful now in today’s world of music?
Depends, if you got the work ethic to match what you want to do. Most people give up nowadays, but those that keep pushing past the barricades will be the ones that will be successful.
Where can we find you on social media?
And if you trying to run some Fortnite