Sol has always been one to take the road less traveled — whether that’s declining to adopt an alter ego through a rapper alias or hitting pause on a burgeoning music career to travel the globe for 10 months. On The Headspace Traveler (out March 4th on his own label) he continues to chart his own course, mining his experience in all its complexity for an album that is both personal and universal.
After returning home to Seattle from his travels, he experienced fits and starts attempting to write the follow-up to his 2012 breakthrough, Yours Truly. But trying to replicate the same creative process after a transformative experience didn’t work. It wasn’t until he allowed himself to sit and process what he had been through — and was continuing to go through — that the album took form.
"The Headspace Traveler is the result of me diving deep into my mind in order to write what I needed to write on the most personal, fundamental level,” he explains. "As individuals and especially as artists many of the obstacles we face are inside our own head, and for me the battle carries out on record.
"There is something divine about making art, so naturally as artists we have look to a higher power, but with that higher power we also have to confront all of our flaws and darkest thoughts in the process,” he continues. “This dichotomy is what sent me so deep into my head. This album is the result of that journey."
Sol first captured an audience in 2012 with his Dear Friends EP trilogy. Following shortly after, he independently released the full-length album, Yours Truly, which quickly hit #1 in the U.S. and #4 worldwide on the iTunes Hip-Hop charts. Then, at what seemed to be a decisive moment in his career, Sol did the unexpected; he left.
As a cum laude graduate of the University of Washington, Sol was offered the prestigious Bonderman Honors Travel Fellowship as he simultaneously was receiving offers from record labels. Ultimately, he chose to keep blazing his own trail and embarked on the 10-month journey across the globe. While traveling, his music continued to flow as his new experiences only added to his already global perspective. Sol’s journey and his new inspiration deeply influenced his next project, the Eyes Open EP, which debuted in the Top 10 on the global iTunes Hip-Hop charts.
Just as Sol’s influences have expanded beyond music so have his aspirations. Whether it be through performing at major festivals such as Sasquatch!, Bumbershoot and the Capitol Hill Block Party; touring with artists including G-Eazy, Iamsu!, the Blue Scholars, Zion-I and Grieves; public speaking; or organizing and playing benefit concerts he naturally finds ways to connect with people.
BOISE! Excited to finally play Treefort Music Fest this year. March 22-26. See y'all soon. #treefort2017
📸 by Rafy8a Media
Today is the 5 year anniversary of my album Yours Truly, a day that changed my life and connected me with so many of you... In celebration, I recorded a timely 2017 "Stage Dive Remix" featuring some of the dopest young emcees representing the future of my city Seattle; J'Von, Travis Thompson & Koga Shabazz. Bump the remix, revisit the album, and share the music to help spread some positivity to the day. ✊🏽
soundcloud.com Today is the 5 year anniversary of my album Yours Truly, a day that changed my life and connected me with so many of you... In celebration, I recorded a special 2017 "Stage Dive Remix" featuring some
Back by popular demand. ✌🏽 hats live at shop.solsays.com. New colors. Limited quantity.
Three million streams of "Ain't Gon' Stop" on Spotify & Soundcloud! Much love to everyone who has connected with the music and shared the message. Thank you to my producers Nima Skeemz & Elan Wright for making this song with me. More music soon!
So long as you keep listening, I ain't gon' stop: https://soundcloud.com/solzilla/aint-gon-stop
📸: Katarina Bell
First photo of 2017... sounds so futuristic.
📸 by Jason "Goonie" Tran
Feels like the only thing 2016 has been good for is the music... Humbled to have the ears of so many and to have been able to contribute to the world with my album #TheHeadspaceTraveler this year. Looking forward to what is next in 2017!