Interview with Rosh Grove
Rosh Grove is a Toronto based R&B artist who is known for his smooth and reflective musical approach. He began writing and producing music at the age of 11 and has evolved into a unique artist, combining musical genres to convey messages of hope, love and determination.
WEAKDAYS: Friday Vibes is Rosh Grove’s latest release and second installment of his album WEAKDAYS. The three songs on this EP aim to inspire feelings of relief, fun and positivity through joyful production and thoughtful lyricism.
We had a chance to talk to Rosh Grove about his EP and upcoming projects in a pandemic-friendly format. Click below to listen to Weakdays: Friday Vibes and keep scrolling to read the interview!
Q: When did you decide to pursue a career in music and what led you to take that path?
It was really my persistent passion and desire to pursue music as my career that constantly moved me along this path. From a young age, I was heavily inspired by incredible artists like Ne-Yo and Lecrae, so when it came to choosing which path I wanted to take in life, it was a very short decision making process. I began really trying to build a brand and work on music professionally when I was 16. I always functioned as my own songwriter and producer, so it only felt natural to see how far I could take things.
Q: Can you tell me about your personal outlook on life and how that has affected your music?
I find I look at life through a unique lens. There are countless opportunities for us to enjoy it to the fullest, but not all are accessible to everyone. In my world, there is no such thing as “can’t” or “not for you.” I am naturally an optimistic soul with a positive outlook on life, to the point where I feel like any obstacle can be overcome using the right tools.
When I started making music, I wanted to learn how to play the piano/guitar so I could know how to interpret music notation. However, coming from a single parent household, it was difficult trying to take classes with my two sisters also wanting to pursue their endeavours. My mom was always encouraging me to do it regardless of our circumstances. Instead of getting discouraged, I found ways around it. I had a great relationship with my music teacher in high school, who saw that I was passionate to learn. He would let me stay a couple of hours after school and play the piano in the back room, just so I could teach myself the basics. I would just sit there with headphones and try to play my favourite songs. That’s why overcoming adversity and struggle are recurring themes in my music, because I’ve had to go through so much in order to do what I love.
Q: You’re based in Toronto so I have to ask. What’s your favourite thing about the Toronto music scene? What’s the best thing about the Canadian music scene?
My favourite thing about the Toronto music scene is the diversity. There are many different artists, each possessing talent like no other. I feel a lot of us have the advantage because we are influenced by our environment. Being in a multicultural city exposes you to things outside of our normal everyday life. You are then able to take elements of different things and create something that will appeal to a broader audience than your genre.
The best thing about the Canadian music scene is how much pride and support we give our artists. Even though a select few of us have made an impact on an international scale, it’s nice to see how much fans rally behind their favourites and show love to their hometown heroes!
Q: Who are your favourite Canadian music artists?
There are many I can name, but at the top of the list are The Weeknd, Alessia Cara, Justin Bieber, Drake, Jessie Reyez, City & Colour and Maestro.
Q: You’re currently working on your album “Weakdays” and just released your second installment “Friday Vibes”. Can you tell me about the concept for the album?
It’s a rather unique story of a common narrative I feel many can relate to. Overall, I wanted to tell a story about how the many situations throughout my life are affecting me. This made me think about things that happen on a daily basis and how they affect me emotionally. I thought putting this into a full length feature would be too much to grasp all at once. I wanted to give my fans a unique listening experience, where they are walking through a week with me, yet they can relate to what I’m talking about. Usually, certain days of the week tend to trigger different emotions, which made me split the songs into groups and associate a particular feeling with them. I thought titling it WEAKDAYS would help represent that message.
Q: Tell me about your new EP “Friday Vibes”. What was the concept behind creating it and from where did you draw inspiration?
For Friday Vibes, I aimed to capture that feeling of freedom most of us tend to feel on Fridays. I looked at the people around me and noticed a trend. Monday to Thursday are usually the days we spend on our grind, going to work/school, and just driven by the expectations of others. We are essentially doing things we need to, instead of what we want to. When Friday comes, there’s this rush of excitement because we are planning to do what we want for the duration of the weekend. With that in mind, I compiled songs from the album that best captured that vibe. Friday Vibes is more upbeat than its predecessor, Thursday Feels, but still allows my fans to escape into their feelings a bit.
Q: What can we expect to see from you coming up?
I have the 3rd installment of WEAKDAYS coming on August 21st, which is titled Saturday Waves. This will be the last EP for this album, but it will be a fun ending to the WEAKDAYS era. It is very uptempo and is what you can expect from a beautiful Saturday morning/afternoon. That will be the focus of this release, and I have to end it off right!
Q: You’re releasing your new EP in the middle of a pandemic. Has COVID-19 affected your release? How has COVID-19 affected you as an artist?
It was rather challenging to say the least. There were alot of things I wanted to do to coincide with each release, including visuals that told the story of each song and a couple of live shows. However, when quarantine became a thing, it forced me to look at different avenues of releasing my music. I connected with visual artists who made me think about using animation for some ideas, as well as utilizing IG and YouTube to still maintain a presence. The lesson I take away from COVID is to always be a couple of steps ahead of yourself, such as having material ready to release in case of a global pandemic. I’m proud to say that I was prepared but I could go even further.
Q: What do you think the music scene in Toronto will look like in the aftermath of COVID-19?
There definitely will be a plethora of music coming out from most artists. Although it will take a while before things really boom again, you can guarantee that artists will take advantage of technology and do more online initiatives such as shows and interviews. COVID has shown us that we can reach way more people at one time. The only thing that may be tricky is supplementing income from live shows/tours, which hit a lot of artists hard this summer. Nonetheless, it will be exciting to watch a new industry emerge from this pandemic.