“There’s No Limit On My Sound”, XXL Freshman Fridayy Speaks On His New Album
30 Aug 2023
In a span of several months, Fridayy has accomplished what takes others an entire lifetime to achieve. His accomplishments include multiple entries onto the Billboard Hot 100 chart, garnering three Grammy nominations, and collaborating on tracks alongside music legends. The singer, songwriter and producer skyrocketed to success with his captivating hook on DJ Khaled’s ‘God Did’.
The Grammy-nominated record garnered widespread acclaim, featuring esteemed music heavyweights such as Jay-Z, Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, and John Legend. Subsequently, Fridayy continued his success trajectory with ‘Forever’, a chart-topping hit crafted alongside Hip-Hop luminary, Lil Baby. With the upcoming release of his album, the Philadelphia-born artist continues to solidify himself as a household name, having made the XXL Freshman Class of 2023.
You’ve achieved success after success over the past 12 months from numerous spots on the Billboard Hot 100 to three Grammy nominations. How has the experience been so far?
Oh, it’s been good. It’s been really fast. I’ve just been working and focusing on what I’m doing. I don’t really like to focus on the past, I’m onto the next. I’m focused on this album I’m about to drop and it’s been real fast.
What have been the most rewarding and challenging aspects that accompany this newfound success?
The best is giving out music, and seeing a reaction to my music. There ain’t really no worst, it’s probably people adapting to me and adapting to my success.
I know your music also incorporates a lot of gospel elements. Can you tell us a bit about growing up in the church choir and how your gospel background plays into the way that you create music today?
It plays a lot into it. That’s where I learned instruments, that’s why I learned how to sing. So that’s in my heart while I’m creating. It’s just where I come from making music. I used to lead the choir so I need those harmonies to finish a song. It’s just me doing different voices, acting as a soprano, a tenor or an alto. It’s just me stacking my vocals maybe thirty or fifty times. Some days I’ll spend hours just stacking vocals and adding that choir element to it.
Do you have a favourite place to record and write?
My room, probably in the house. I like writing everywhere though, but I like being in my own space.
Are you someone who prefers recording by yourself, or do you like to have people in the studio?
I like to have a small group but I don’t like recording in front of a lot of people. My music is very emotional, so there could be a few people in there, but I engineer myself and I produce, so I like to focus. I don’t like a lot of noise in the studio.
I know that you play a few different instruments. Do you feel that gives you more control over the way that you create your sound? Can you also tell us which instruments you play because I know there’s a lot?
Yeah, I play the piano, the guitar, the bass and the drums. I’m engineering myself, I’m producing, you know? That’s why my sound is so different. As soon as you hear a song, you’re like, all right, that’s a Fridayy song because I’m completely in control. I could take it where I want to take it, both with the melodies and musically and lyrically.
Congratulations on the success of both ‘God Did’ and ‘Forever’. How did those collaborations come about?
With Khaled, I came up with the idea to make the song (‘God Did’), and then my manager Edgar connected me to Eddie. It was Eddie who got me my publishing deal. We sent the record to Eddie, and Eddie sent it to Khaled. I was watching Khaled on Instagram every day say ‘God Did’ so I just made that hook, not even knowing how I could get it to him. It just played out so perfectly and as soon as we sent it to him, he said, I need this on my album.
Lil Baby was actually through an artist named Vory. It was actually me and Vory’s song. He posted it to Instagram and it just went viral. Lil Baby then hit up Vory and said, I need that hook.
We know you’ve dropped your album, do you feel more pressure for that release after the success of these records?
No, I don’t feel any pressure at all. When I dropped my last EP, I already built my core fan base that knew what I was supposed to give them and needed the music that I gave. I don’t feel any pressure, I just give the music to my fans.
Do you have a favourite track on the album?
Yeah, I’m excited by ‘Stand By Me’. My favourite song on the album is track three. But I have Fireboy on the project, I got Chris Brown, I got Adekunle Gold and I got Byron Messiah.
Where did you record it and what did that process look like?
I did it all in New York, in one studio. We made this whole album in three or four weeks. I would get on the piano and create a melody. I’d make the beat and it was just free, you know? I was locked in with my producer, Kareem, and another two writers, Ambrose and Bebe. But every song that we made, we used for the project.
What would you say your biggest sources of inspiration were for it?
That’s a good question. I wouldn’t say it’s one source of inspiration. My inspiration comes from how people react to my music and how I put realness in my music and how it touches people. That was the inspiration to make this project, knowing the impact that I have when I make music.
Can we expect you to be on the road soon?
For sure, man. Hopefully a tour in the fall. You know what I’m saying? Definitely, for sure though. I’m actually coming to the UK this weekend.
Oh, no way! What’s your plans when you’re over here? Are you staying for Notting Hill Carnival?
I’m trying to see Asake perform. I love Asake.
In terms of your sound, how do you envision your sound evolving?
There’s no limit to my sound. There’s no place where you could really put me in a box. Especially on this album, I incorporate a lot of different genres. There’s an R&B side, there’s a Hip-Hop side, there’s a Gospel side. It’s going to continue to evolve because there’s not one genre I can’t step in. You know what I’m saying?
What advice would you give to a younger you? What would you tell your younger self?
I wouldn’t tell myself anything, I’m not gonna lie. I’ll just let him do what he’s doing because I was always focused on music and I always didn’t care what anybody said. I always had my own sound. I would just confirm things in his head that he was already doing. I wouldn’t tell him anything different if you get what I’m saying.
I mean, it definitely worked out.
Yeah, I would just tell him to keep being himself, keep being different, keep making music.
Well, thank you. And we really look forward to the release of the project.
I’m definitely excited. I can’t wait for you to hear it.