Updated: Nov 29, 2022
Cover and article images courtesy of Alive Coverage via Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival.
Born in Florida and based in Los Angeles, rising rapper Tyla Yaweh has been making waves with his ultra-successful singles, including "Tommy Lee" (featuring Post Malone), "All the Smoke" (featuring Gunna and Wiz Khalifa), and "Stuntin' On You" (featuring DaBaby). The tunes will all appear on his highly anticipated sophomore album, RAGER BOY, along with numerous other exciting musical additions, and have amassed billions of streams across multiple platforms.
Yaweh's most recent release, a collaboration with Trippie Redd and PnB Rock titled "Do No Wrong", highlights his original and ever-evolving sound, as well as his ability to turn out hit after hit. Having toured extensively, playing arenas and major venues around the world with Post Malone and SAINt JHN, the musician was no stranger to the stage when he arrived at Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival this year. Bringing an energetic punch to the festival's main stage (Lands End) this Sunday afternoon, Yaweh performed numerous fan-favorite songs, keeping the audience engaged with his showmanship and crowd-surfing skills.
We spoke with rising star Tyla Yaweh in a live interview about his set at Outside Lands, earliest influences, and upcoming projects (an album, fashion brand, and docu-series). Check out the full interview below and let us know what you think.
Where are you based?
I'm based in LA. I have a house in Florida, too, so I sort of go back and forth between them. When I need to just chill out, I go to Florida for a week or two.
Tell me about the move from Florida to LA and how that impacted you musically.
My life changed in LA. I moved there from Florida and really chased my dreams. I had 'em in my hands already, being on the road and around a lot of stars in Florida. I was touring and I was involved in the whole underground Florida music movement, so it was a blessing to be part of that. It's just cool coming up from Florida to California, you know?
At what age did you start making music? Who or what first inspired you?
I was around 13. My sister was in a girl band and they were signing her independent label that was pretty popular. I was a skater–I still skate to this day–but I also loved dancing, singing, and just being around artsy things and fashion. I went straight to music and it just worked out nicely.
How would you describe your sound?
Super alien. I don’t just do hip-hop, I make everything. I write alternative music, I play instruments, I experiment with my sound… I just enjoy music. I don’t put myself in one box with genres.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
I have a lot of influences, but my spirit animal is Jim Morrison for sure. I was also with Green Day last night, and Billie Joe Armstrong is also super important to me (I call him my stepdad). He shows a lot of love–the whole band does, and they honestly inspired me to want to play instruments and be a rockstar when I was younger. I used to watch Fuse TV and old classic MTV rock videos all day just to feel and experience in my head what it would be like on stage.
"I used to watch Fuse TV and old classic MTV rock videos all day just to feel and experience in my head what it would be like on stage."
So you grew up listening to a lot of rock music?
Yeah, I loved anything from the CBGBs era, the Sex Pistols, David Bowie, Madonna, Prince, Michael Jackson… I also really liked Al Green and Earth, Wind & Fire. There’s a lot of different music that I love and that sort of brought me to where I am now.
Did you have a favorite moment from your show today?
I don’t really usually remember things when I’m on stage as much until I see the videos because I’m in my own world, my own meditation, when I’m performing. I just want to give the people a good show and stay in the moment–I never think about the mistakes because everybody makes them sometimes. Nothing is perfect, but I always have a lot of fun on stage.
Was the crowd surfing planned or was that a spur of the moment decision?
I usually crowd surf in my shows. I usually get in the crowd, enjoy life with the kids. It’s just a blessing to be here doing what I love.
What’s your dream venue?
I’ve performed around the world… at Madison Square Garden, out here multiple times, and I’ve performed at big arenas. I’ve been all over the world and I’m just going to keep going; I’m not going to stop. It's a blessing to be where I'm at for sure.
Tell me a little bit about your upcoming album, RAGER BOY.
RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY, RAGER BOY. Enough said.
I've been working on the album for like three years now. I haven't dropped a project in three years because I wanted to really experience my life and just keep recording and developing my sound before putting anything else out. This sound is definitely more mature and it's a combination of a lot of different stories, but it’s still turnt up. I'm giving you a bit of a sneak peek into who I want to be in the next 10 to 15 years. I want to be a household name. I just carry that idea with my music, which is what I feel in my spirit that I'm supposed to do.
"I'm giving you a bit of a sneak peek into who I want to be in the next 10 to 15 years. I want to be a household name."
The singles that have already been released feature some pretty exciting collaborations and original musical content. What else can fans expect from the rest of the project?
I have a docu-series coming out as well. It’s about the creation of the album, but I'm gonna give people a glimpse into the years of me just being around the world, writing, and living my life–everything. I’ve got footage of everything I’ve been to and how I’ve developed as an artist. It’s crying, arguments, constant work, turn-up, and more… It's just awesome.
How long have you been working on the series or known you wanted to make one?
I just always wanted to film my life wherever I went. I'm always filming, always going, never stopping. Actually, this would be a good thing to film, too!
Walk me through your creative process. How do you write your songs?
A lot of it starts off with a melody. Lately I've been building music from scratch a lot, too. I've just been out coming up with new stuff. I came out here early to work with a band and build some music and experiment with sounds. I love drifting off to a whole new wave of Tyla Yaweh, where I want to be seen. I do usually start off with a melody, though. If I hear a song, sometimes it just comes straight to me–the chorus is right there, based on my life experience and what I did last night or what I say to you in our conversation. It all comes from me just living my life and being me.
Will the collaboration you worked on the other day appear on RAGER BOY or another upcoming project?
I can’t say exactly, but I will tell you that I'm definitely going to be coming here to work more. I like it out here in the bay and in San Francisco.
What’s next for Tyla Yaweh?
Album, album, album, docu-series, album, album, album, album, album. I’m also working on dropping some new clothing, getting more involved in the entertainment business, and acting.
Are you designing your own merch or clothing line?
Yes, I’m designing my own fashion label and it’s going to be crazy. I’m really happy with how everything is looking right now. I just want to find new ways to connect with my fans and give them everything I can. I’ll be touring at the beginning of October and the album drops soon, but I’m not giving a date.
"I just want to find new ways to connect with my fans and give them everything I can."
Are there any dates on the tour for which you’re especially excited?
Every date, every city. It's just amazing that I get to be on the road so consistently. I haven't left the road for a while and even during the pandemic, we were still getting booked in certain places. It was crazy. Places were open and we just kept going, which was wild.
Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?
I just want everyone to release all good energy, you know, and rage to the highest. Enjoy your life, stay healthy, and love it all.