Interview By Kim Coco
Introduce yourself to our readers! Let them know your name, where you’re from and the name of the project you dropped!
What’s up? My name is Elijah The Boy- out of Hunts Point the Bronx and my latest single is entitled Send Em Up which is out now on all platforms so go check that out.
Elijah- Big Congratulations are in order! On 11/20/20 you debuted Send Em Up (produced by Navi Beats) and it seems that the moment you released that single – it went VIRAL! To date it already has 250k streams on Spotify, over 270k YouTube views, over 200k on Apple ! Elijah the Boy- why do you think the fans went SO crazy for this song?
The reason I think the fans went crazy for this one is because of the energy it gives off. Send Em Up is just a different lane for me than the fans are used to – it’s more Drill which is popular right now. Drill is the sound of the city so I wanted to experiment with what was hot right now. The way I attacked making the track during the creative process was different for me too– I’m actually rapping in the song and talking about REAL life shit like losing people, struggling in the city, and things that really happen. BUT- while I’m talking about all that real life shit – I still kept the song fun enough to turn up and dance to. I wanted to keep the energy while storytelling. Actually storytelling is really what made me what to be an artist in the first place. That’s what I’m good at-telling my story through lyrics. I knew this one was a winner right away because when I played it for my friends in the studio by the time the third hook came around – my friends were singing along to it. They knew the words. Honestly- I think the fans love the overall vibe of Send Em Up because even though it goes SO hard it’s still fun.
Send Em Up on Youtube: https://youtu.be/9kAalWnBqdM
Stream “Send Em Up“: https://linktr.ee/Elijahtheboy
Elijah The Boy- As I mentioned earlier- Send Em Up went viral immediately following its release. Plug in the team who helped you put the song and video together.
I’m super hands on with everything but to be successful it takes a solid team so I’ve gotta give a shout out to them! Navi Beats is my producer. He’s made every single song I’ve ever dropped. He’s like an alien (laughs) . Navi Beats can make any type of beat and then there’s my Engineer – Mixed by Auden – he’s the one who perfects the sound after I lay it down. He makes everything sound good.
The music video is Directed by A1vision x Honesty. They shot that video and will be shooting the rest of my videos. They really brought my vision to life.
Also I can’t forget my boy- Ferm Famous. He’s like the professional side and business side of things- ya know , he helps with things like branding. That’s the team right there.
Elijah- Tell the Hip Hop Weekly reader’s about the creative concept of the Send Em Up Music Video. Did you film in the Bronx?
I shot that music video right in front of the building I grew up in actually. The whole concept of the video is that I wanted to keep it as real and authentic as possible while showing my fans the gritty side of things and where I come from. That’s the actual street I grew up on. That’s the block I had to walk to get to school every day and the corner store I would stop at before I went to school every single day. I wanted to keep the concept as authentic and as real as possible like with everything I do. Since there’s never been a rapper to come out of Hunt’s Point before me, it was very important for me to film this video in my neighborhood that I grew up in. Hunt’s Point is the place that made me, where it all happened. It’s my roots. Based on a True Story!
Elijah- as you said- you’re the VERY FIRST ARTIST TO EVER to come out of Hunt’s Point -The Bronx. You are the first to put your neighborhood on the map.
I know- Crazy. It’s an honor. There has never been any other rapper to ever come out of Hunt’s Point. Ever. Ya feel me? Never- so that’s real important for me to set that example and the tone. There have been rappers to come out of the Bronx yes- but out of my neighborhood-No. I’m the very first one. Knowing that I’m like- you know what? “I’m gonna wear this badge of honor proudly and if I’m gonna be the first one to come out of here, and to put my neighborhood on, I’ve gotta take it all the way to the top.” I’ve been ready for this moment. I have all these eyes on me and I’m SO ready.
Elijah – The success of Send Em Up is because of you. You alone pushed this record hard enough to go viral. You did over 300 DJ drops and distributed the song by yourself to different DJ’s all over. You even had the record spinning in the clubs and playing on the radio before it was even released. So- without giving away your full recipe, tell the readers how you got Send Em Up to go SO viral.
Thank you! I think it was a combination of a lot of things. For one- the fans really fucked with the record heavy and pushed it with me. They genuinely love it. I did over 300 DJ drops before the record even came out and I think by doing that it helped build the momentum and helped the record catch a buzz even before I actually debuted it. The industry really hyped it too because I had it playing on the radio and in the clubs before it was out. It was playing on the radio – Power 105 and Hot 97 too before it dropped. I think hearing it before it even came out made the fans real excited and super anxious about it. Also because this record is different for me as an artist, it opened up the door for a new fan base. It made people curious about me. Some people actually just discovered me and my music because of Send Em Up. There’s a new fan base now paying attention. It’s funny because I can actually feel that there has been a major shift in the energy. There’s a lot more people paying attention now. But I’m ready.
Elijah the thing that makes you the wild card is that you won’t box yourself into just one genre. Send Em UP is different than your other songs and what the fans are used to hearing from you. So- The million dollar question is- will we hear more drill music from Elijah the Boy in the future?
Oh yeah. I have more songs in the stash so most definitely! I have so much music and a lot more on the way. I have such a loyal fan base that really holds me down and allows me to be creative. There are more drill songs in my stash but I’m also still gonna make my emotional music because that’s who I am. I’m still gonna story tell and be emotional. That’s why I got MOODSWINGS tattooed on my arm. At the core of it I’m always gonna stay true to me but I also don’t ever want to be predictable and box myself into one lane, one sound. I’m blessed to be able to do this as a full time career and it’s because of the fans that I can experiment. They stay curious and hyped for new music from me no matter what. Honestly- I haven’t worked a job in 3 years and it’s because of the fans. Shout out to my fans. Y’all are die hard. Love you guys!
Elijah The Boy Sells out His Show: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bx8zTHpFhv1/?igshid=ossnxfops3bt
Elijah the BOY! Akademiks recently posted you to his page with a captain that reads:
“The streets are saying Elijah the Boy going crazy in NYC. This fax or nah?”
What went through your head when you saw him post that?
Even though there’s a lot of controversy around Akademiks, at the end of the day- he puts artists on. You know why? Love him or hate him the whole industry follows him. Him posting that opened the door for a lot of new fans to discover me and my music. And it brought hope to my fans because it kind of like stamped my place in the industry. My fans that been with me for the last 3 years really cheered me on and showed so much love when he posted that. It kind of gave them hope, you know what I mean? Like “Finally the underdog is being recognized. Finally he’s being put on and doing it.” That was a wild moment because I did so much of this myself. People actually sent me messages congratulating me after that. The day one fans felt like they made it with me.
Elijah, you actually shut down the Reebok Store in Times Square in 2020. Tell us about that very viral moment.
Oh yeah that was crazy like on a Justin Bieber level moment (laughs). I interact with my fans as much as possible through DM, in person, at shows, even on the streets. I knew I wanted to do a meet and greet in the city so I went to the Reebok store in Times Square and asked to speak to the manager. I showed him my portfolio and explained to him who I was and how I had this idea of doing a meet and greet with my fans. I promised him a big turn out and that the fans would buy stuff from the store when they came out to see me. So- we locked it in and I put the word out about the meet and greet and WE LITERALLY shut Time Square down. I think we had over 1000 hyped fans that came out that day. My boys even worked security at the door. We pulled that off and went viral with it.
Elijah do you feel pressure being that they are calling you the Next Big thing out of the Bronx since Cardi B?
No because I’ve been ready for this moment for the last 3 years. Everything that I’ve done and all I have worked for, all the trials and tribulations have led me up to this moment. I’m so ready for what’s about to happen in 2021. I look back on when I first started and I know it’s my time now. I’ve never felt more like Elijah the Boy in my Life than I do now.
You have a very close relationship with your mother. You 2 have been through a lot together. What does your mom mean to you and how does she inspire you in your career?
I’m a super momma’s boy and I don’t hide it. To me- that’s who I am, and my identity. The reason I go so hard and push so hard is really all for her. To see her happy and so she never has to struggle a day in her life again. My mother gave everything for me to be here. That’s why I never gave up. I post about my mother and talk about her because my mother- she is my REASON. I got a reason for doing this music. I’m not making music for designer clothes, fancy cars, jewelry or fame – I’m doing this for my family. I’m trying to end the poverty in my generation and in my life. When you have a real reason- nothing can stop you. God Got You. My mom is the one who put me on to hip hop in the first place. She would play Usher and Biggie in the crib. My first CD was Eminem that SHE gave me. You gotta remember my mother was only 14 when she had me. My father died of gun violence and then her brother – my uncle died shortly after that. My grandmother – her mother was going through her own issues with addiction. My mom was just 14 years old raising me by herself. She didn’t have to have me but she did. She was a child herself raising a child. So I feel like I have to make sure she’s good always because of all she has done for me. Everything I do – I do it for her. What’s interesting is even after everything she went through, she says I was her reason and the light in those dark times. She had no parents of her own, no brother and her kids father wasn’t around to help her raise me yet she still did it. What’s crazy is my mother says that through all of those losses she suffered, losing her brother -my uncle was her hardest loss and she says I remind her so much of her brother. Almost Like his soul came back through me. I never got a chance to meet him but I think he would be proud of me.
Elijah The Boy and His Mother: https://www.instagram.com/p/BmPFMrMnsZp/?igshid=1gokwqrn07k1w
How did you get the name Elijah the Boy?
In 2015 I wanted my artist name to be Elijah and I always referred to myself as The Boy in my music. When I had went viral in 2017 though during one of my shows at S.O.B.’s- the crowd started chanting “Elijah The Boy.” So the fans really picked the name for me.
Fan question: How did ten toes freestyle come about?
Frank Perotta Ten Toes Freestyle was a challenge about 3 years ago that actually my little sister put me on to. She was writing for the challenge in her room and while she was writing I could hear the beat through the door. So I’m hearing the beat and just started freestyling off the top of my head from the next room. I kinda knew it was going to be good- because when I did the video and played it back my arm hairs stood up. I just had a feeling it was going to go well but I had NO IDEA it would go viral. So I posted it and when I woke up I went viral and had 25,000 new followers. Ten Toes really opened the gate to building my Instagram following.
Ten Toes Challenge: https://youtu.be/yOLV2VuXPPc
Your brand is growing. You aren’t just an artist. You also have launched your own Label- ONI World Wide and also your clothing brand Outsiders Never Inside WorldWide. Tell the readers about that!
I decided to launch my label because I felt like such an outsider in the industry which is why I named it ONI. ONI stands for: Outsiders Never Inside. ONI is my brand. It’s my label. It’s what I stand for. It was created in 2019 because I was hitting the Top 10 chart songs on I tunes, selling out shows and meet and greets , flying to LA, Hawaii, all over to perform and doing it all independently but yet I wasn’t be talked about in the industry. So I was like damn if they don’t want to talk about me in the blogs and in the media, if they’re going to act like they don’t notice me -I’m gonna kill shit and force them to fuck with me. They will be forced to hear me and notice me. Now I have the label which is mine and they can’t take that from me. They see me now though. Then I launched the clothing brand and it’s what we are repping. A lot of people can relate to feeling like an outsider and so I think that’s why people fuck with it.
Shop the collection: https://www.oniworldwide.com/products
OK Elijah! RAPID TRIVIA! ONE WORD ANSWERS AND NO ELABORATING. READY?
Let’s do it!
Tupac or Biggie–
Aside from yourself, who is the best talent to come out of the Bronx? – Big Pun
Sum Up the current state of Hip Hop Using one word-
Who are your TOP 5 artists of ALL TIME Dead or Alive?
Ok well in no particular order
Name one thing you think that even with all the riches and fame in the world, Money will still never buy?
Elijah the Boy what are 3 fun facts about you that we would never know otherwise?
1. I can draw really well. I can draw portraits actually. I’m really good.
2. I’m really good at Mario Kart and will smoke anyone
3. I love the show Survivor! I been binge watching that shit.
You walk down a long hallway and at the end you come to meet 2 doors. The door to the left goes to your past. The door to your right goes to the future. You get 24 hours behind either day. Which door are you opening?
I’m going to my future.
OK – This part is called – Do you believe in? Yes or No responses only
Santa Clause– no
Another Universe- yes
Life after Death- yes
A Power Higher than you- yes
Love at first sight- Yes
Elijah the Boy- Do You Believe In Yourself?– Yes
Elijah you recently premiered your new single Make a Name and already it’s got the industry going crazy. 250k views on YouTube and you released it only on Jan 22 2021! Other hit- congratulations!
Make a Name on Youtube: https://youtu.be/x-7pc9vo_Fc
Thank you Elijah the Boy for taking the time to talk to me and Hip Hop Weekly Magazine today! Where can our readers find you on social media? Plug yourself in so we know how to find you for features, collaborations, more interviews, business/ booking inquiries and all things you?
Music Link: https://linktr.ee/Elijahtheboy Stream
“Send Em Up” https://linktr.ee/Elijahtheboy
Google: https://g.co/kgs/NCNRf9 ONI: