23-year-old musician, Lavi$h, made the move from Winnipeg to Toronto two years ago to pursue his career in music. Coming from a smaller city like Winnipeg, Lavi$h says, “It’s been amazing, I’ve met so many new people and received so many opportunities.”
“When you come from a small city, most of your support is on social media, so you don’t get that much physical attention and fans,” he says, adding that he has been able to put together an amazing team to help him jumpstart his career in Toronto.
Toronto has been praised by the music industry as one of the hottest hubs for music production. Lavi$h says the move from Winnipeg has been more of a refresh for him rather than a restart. “Toronto is more about the culture, and is a bigger platform for what I want to do,” the young musician says from his home in Toronto.
Lavi$h describes himself as a rapper, singer, songwriter and all-around artist. Despite multiple offers from major record labels, he has decided to remain independent so that he can keep working on his craft and maintain creative control of his music and image. He takes his artistry very seriously, and doesn’t want that watered down by the machine that is a major record label.
Although he’s fierce about his independence, he understands that to achieve his goals of being one of the top artists in the world, he’ll eventually need to go through the industry gatekeepers. Today however, he’s not ready to do that, and is focused on growing his already loyal fan base and releasing singles that showcase his talent. He says he’s motivated by achieving financial freedom for himself and his family and by being a mentor to other young artists, just like him.
Other young musicians message him on social media all the time, and while he responds and also shares his responses on social media, he says he doesn’t want to be praised for it. “It’s just basic human decency,” he says, as he reflects on the time he takes to give advice to other artists.
Moving a whole family from the third world is not easy, my parents did that. So for that I owe them—I aim to be the greatest in the world for them.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed the world down, it hasn’t slowed down Lavi$h. He has used the time to focus on his health, and continues to create at least three songs everyday from his home studio. kind's entertainment editor, Jenn Sanasie, caught up with him at home to live the life of a young artist in quarantine.
After Lavi$h brushes his teeth, showers and finishes his morning routine, he sits down at his computer and starts recording. “When I sit down to record a song, I always finish it, whenever I start a song, two hours and I’m done,” the musician says. “If I don’t finish it, I delete it.” For him, it’s all about the process. His home studio looks out over the financial district in Toronto, as the buildings tower over us on an overcast day, his voice cuts through the gloomy mood, filling the condo with creative energy.
His roommate and best friend, Obi Nnadi, is also from Winnipeg and is one of Lavi$h’s biggest supporters. Obi often appears in his best friend’s music videos, and could be described as a “live-in hype man.”
For lunch, Lavi$h whips up a vegan chili. While browning his Beyond Beef Crumbles, he says he took up a plant-based diet during the pandemic, and admits he was influenced by, “someone very special.”
“I recently switched my diet from eating whatever, to being vegan,” the rapper says, adding that if he didn’t make the switch, he feels like he would have gained quarantine weight. “When I get hungry now, I eat plant-based. I eat vegetables. I’m eating healthy food,” he says, reiterating that he strives for a healthy body and mind so that he can create to his full potential.
Kitchen towel tucked into his pants, the musician chops vegetables to add to his chili while he listens to grime—his favourite genre. It’s a whole vibe.
After lunch, he sits back down at his computer and throws a music video on TV. Obi sits on the couch and the two talk about their plans for the day. Lavi$h’s upcoming single, “I Got It,” and Obi’s plans for his personal training business, Lift With Obi.
“He makes it easier to stay in shape,” Lavi$h says, talking about his roommate. Obi has been building his own personal training brand, and motivates Lavi$h to maintain his workout routine. Since gyms have been harder to access during quarantine, the two usually work out in city parks or go for runs. The clouds and rain didn’t stop these two while we were there, using a simple set up in their living room, they made sure that they got their workout in.
What’s next? Rise and repeat, and these two said they were just going to do it all over again. Lavi$h sat down to record after getting inspiration during his workout, and Obi got on the phone to start returning calls he missed during the shoot. Later they would have another meal, talk shop and if the rain let up—venture out into the city for some air. It’s just one of the ways that Lavi$h stays fresh.
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