The Break Presents – Bizzy Banks
Bizzy Banks found inspiration for his rap career right at home. The Trinidadian-American rapper watched his older brother freestyle around the house, which lit the fire within for Bizzy to master his own skills in hip-hop.
The 22-year-old Brooklyn native committed to rap in 2019. Bizzy decided to put out music more often, as opposed to sporadically releasing SoundCloud freestyles like he once did. Consistency was key. In July of that year, Bizzy dropped the piano-driven, ominous track "Don't Start," a banger with that familiar Brooklyn drill sound. Only here, the rhymer is more focused on his lyrics and flows than some of his peers. Two years after its release, the video has 7 million views on YouTube, and the song has racked up more than 4 million Spotify streams.
"Why these niggas be talkin’ like they won’t get it?/Feelin’ invincible/Until I send them monsters to make you invisible/Dash i’m sending these niggas to finish you/Mortal Combat how I pull up and finish you/Come to the block is what I call a business move," he raps on the no-hook track.
Bizzy can jump from flow to flow, plus his references are clever. Those standout traits in his music have helped his name ring all over New York City before the year was up in 2019. He carried that momentum into March of 2020, when he signed to Atlantic Records. Six months later in September, he dropped his first mixtape, GMTO, Vol. 1. Bizzy's fans have pushed other songs like "Don't Start Pt. 2" and "Bandemic" to over 4 million and 2 million Spotify streams, respectively. His most recent single, "Adore You" featuring PnB Rock and produced by D.A. Got That Dope, was released last month. The slow groove puts the rhymer in a prime position to keep evolving.
With his forthcoming 12-track project, Same Energy, arriving in July, Bizzy Banks speaks to XXL over the phone for this week's edition of The Break.
I grew up listening to: "A lot of Lil Wayne. I also grew up listening to a lot of reggae. People like Sizzla, Capleton, Damian Marley, Bob Marley. But when it came to rap, mostly Lil Wayne. I really used to look up to my older brother, and that's my older brother favorite rapper. I wasn't really introduced to rap until Lil Wayne, because my family is West Indian. So when he started listening to Lil Wayne, I basically just liked whoever he liked."
My style’s been compared to: "I know most people say I remind them of Fabolous, because it's more of a New York sound."
I’m going to blow up because: "I just go along with everything that's coming. I'm getting used to everything. I just feel like because music has changed my situation, even my thoughts on stuff, keeping me away from the streets, I feel like that alone is helping me know that I'm doing the right things and going the right way. When it comes to music itself though, that's something I'd really have to think on."
What’s your most slept-on song, and why?: "'Extra Sturdy.' I see the interactions with my fans on TikTok or even when I do shows. I see how people are so invested into that song because of a particular part. I feel like the views itself doesn't match. Views on YouTube, it's like a million views, but views on streaming services, its crazier. I'm a person that looks at YouTube a lot."
My standout records to date have been: "'Don't Start,' that's my most viewed song on YouTube. That's the song that got me noticed further than just Brooklyn. I just came with a different sound that people really wasn't hearing when [Brooklyn] drill was getting lit. People felt like Brooklyn drill was dying out until Pop Smoke came back with a different sound, so, I feel like he had the party vibe. Then people hear me rappin'-rappin', it just changed the outlook of everything."
My standout moments to date have been: "Shows. Certain shows I was doing, I just started to realize, I just learned how my fans really feel about me and how they react to me. I wasn't seeing it because of the pandemic, so, I wasn't able to really interact with my fans personally. So, me doing shows and hearing them sing my songs word for word, that's a big moment to me."
Most people don’t know: "I grew up vegetarian. I'm now trying new things; I eat steak now, but I wouldn't eat chicken, which is very weird, because most people think I would eat chicken first before steak. I eat crab legs, but I don't eat shrimps or regular kinds of fish. I'm just picky."
I’m going to be the next: "I don't have an answer for that one. That was great!"
Follow Bizzy Banks on SoundCloud and Instagram.
"Adore You" featuring PnB Rock
GMTO, Vol. 1 (Get Money Take Over)