The beauty of the age of internet goes beyond being able to creep anyone you like (or hate). Artists, specifically rappers, are using the internet as a highly effective way to gain a following before they even get signed or release an actual album. What’s in a name? Well this kid is a paradox of a name fit for a king with a stage name fit for the streets. Sir Robert Bryson Hall II sounds like the furthest thing from a rapper. This 24 year old has taken the name Psychological but you probably just know his as Logic. Without an album out yet he has gained his fame from the internet and it’s a story definitely worth knowing.
First of all I should clarify that he is by no means royalty or knighted. The ‘Sir’ just came from his mother at birth determining that quirky creativity does in fact run in the family. He was born in Gaithersburg, Maryland which doesn’t sound vey gangster but he had a fairly tumultuous childhood. His African-American father and his caucasian mother both suffered with crack addiction and alcoholism throughout his childhood. The man who he shared a name with, his father, was not a part of his childhood but they are now in contact. His mother was abusive towards him using racial slurs. They are no longer in contact as he notes she had emotional and mental problems. Logic faced issues with his mixed race, his brother selling crack cocaine and his lack of interest in school. As a young teenage Logic was seeing crack cocaine manufactured and sold out of his apartment building. He was kicked out of his high school in the tenth grade as he began skipping resulting in him failing everything but english. He had the recipe to be a rapper already he just needed the creativity and the drive, he already had the struggle and English skills. By the age of 17 Logic had moved out and gotten two jobs, the grind begins.
So clearly his childhood would provoke one of two things: massive amounts of character and persistence or a bad attitude and distaste for life. We both know that I would never write about a distasteful rapper, don’t be ridiculous. In an article in The Baltimore Sun Logic opens up about his coming of age stating “It wasn’t the best childhood, but I did my best to make it good on my end. I didn’t let it pull me down. In my music I don’t glorify [my upbringing]“. This is one of the most refreshing things you could hear from a rapper even if he admitted to being a ‘huge pothead’ as a youngster. Too many times the genre is defined by the glorification of gang violence, drug selling, and abuse, but here is a guy who has seen it, and decided to not let it define him. Many times he has been criticized for his clean image but I say the hell with them, he has flow, lyrical ingenuity and a great sense of style.
Logic had been rapping seriously at the ripe ole age of 15 influenced after hearing the score of ‘Kill Bill’ produced by Wu Tang leader RZA. When Logic was 16 his mentor Soloman Taylor, who had came into his life at age 13, gave him beat CDs to write lyrics over. In 2009 by the name of Psychological he released an unofficial mixtape ‘Psychological: The Mixtape” (real creative). He opened a show for Pitbull, EPMD, Method Man, Redman and Ludacris and soon after dropped his name to Logic. His rap career really took off in December 2010 with the release of the mixtape “Young, Broke and Infamous”. If that title isn’t straight up honesty then I don’t know what is. This project included two videos for singles on the mixtape ‘Stain in the Game’ and ‘Backpack’.
Logic began to get noticed including by the likes of independent record label owner Chris Zanou. He was signed to Chris’s Visionary music group soon after. Logic released his second mixtape ‘Young Sinatra’ on September 16, 2011. The video for the single ‘All I Do’ was the first of his to hit over one million views. By March 2012 Billboard had named Logic the Next Big Sound. Th this mixtape by the name of ‘ Young Sinatra: Undeniable’ was released in April of 2012. If you haven’t caught on Logic was influenced heavily by Frank Sinatra and how he treated people. He says that Frank is the reason he carries himself ‘in an intellectual and kind manner’. In his songs he exposes the struggles he faces growing up with stark honesty. This kid is as versatile as he is likeable. He states about the mixtape “There’s stuff on there for the motherfuckers that don’t pay attention to lyrics and just want to have fun, but every kine in constructed with such depth that the real lyricists and nitpickers have something to listen to and analyze as well”. This statement is a great backup to why I believe it is more important to fall for an artist and not just their music. Artist are going to change sounds, they can never stay stagnant or you will grow old of them. They have to be able to show who they truly are and if you like them to the core, that’s what makes you a true fan. Now that was a little soft lets get back to the good stuff.
In the beginning of 2013 Logic was working on his fourth mixtape while finishing his European tour in March. On May 7 ‘Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever’ was released with the announcement of the Welcome to Forever Tour throughout the U.S Like our boy Kendrick Lamar, Logic was named to the ‘Top 10 Freshmen List’ for XXL. He solidified he was here to stay when he signed to Def Jam Recordings on April 15, 2013. In July it was announced he would be touring with the likes of Kid Cudi, Big Sean and Tyler the Creator which makes me extremely jealous of any of you who got to that one.
2014 is looking promising for this up and comer with announcement of a debut arriving sometime by the end of the year. He stated to XXL about the album that he won’t have any major collaborations even with his tour hook-ups because he wants to make it his own. He toured with the EDM group Krewella on their Verge Campus Tour this spring which I also hold a high amount of jealous for you if you got to see that one. Basically, keep your ears out for this debut album, its going to be a gooder.
Now for the style. Much like his paradox of names, his style tends to sway between two extremes. This might sound like he is confused but really he is nailing it. Logic can wear a button up hipster print shirt one day and chains, backwards hat gangster style the next. He walks the line between hood and hip and does it better than most ever could. Think leather and letterman’s paired with hoodies and graphics. A brilliant contradictory if you ask me.
Logic is an admirable rapper with a twisted past to back up his quick paced flow. He’s a force raised by the internet. From crack cocaine to touring alongside some of the biggest names in the game, he’s been a class act. Take a listen, would I ever steer you wrong?