Ty Dolla $ign has been grinding for a while. First it was to break into the game and now it’s to push his debut album, Free TC to new heights. Ty’s been focused on this project for the past two years, recording and rerecording it to perfection. Since breaking into the game in 2010, Tyrone Griffi n Jr., has built a name for himself off of his raunchy radio dwelling records indeed carving out a niche for himself in the current rather empty R&B landscape.
Credited with helping to revive the West Coast rap music scene alongside DJ Mustard, YG and of course, Top Dawg Entertainment, Ty, although content with his primary success, has been eager to showcase the full range of his musicality with his debut eff ort. The album’s debut single “Blasé” featuring Future and Rae Sremmurd instantly hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at No. 66 by press time.
With additional guest appearances from Kanye West, Diddy and Babyface, to name a few, Ty, 30, pulled out all the stops for this project. After playing in the background for several it’s now the Los Angeles’ native crooner’s time to shine. On a warm fall day in October, Ty chilled at the XXL offices and broke down his progress.
XXL: What do you think your album will do for the current landscape of R&B?
Ty Dolla $ign: I’m happy to be the one that changed R&B and made it so you can actually say what you want instead of having to be like, “Baby, don’t go.” It’s more real. I think I get recognition musically because there are some people that try to put out albums and do all this crazy music, but it went too far. I know how to mesh the two and make it all right. I wanted [this album] to be perfect. I wanted it to be something you could listen to from start to finish. I got string players.
Not sure if everyone knows, but you are a very musical guy. What do you actually play?
I play basically anything with keys on it and anything with strings on it. And, I play these bitches. I’m like Snoop Dogg. I’ve been playing instruments forever. I get better as I go though. Anything to make a beat, I’m down to learn how to do it. Except for horns because a nigga’s lips be looking fucked up. Then, I won’t be able to play these bitches.
What’s your goal with this album?
I want to gain more fans and I want to show people that I’m a little bit more advanced than you thought I was when it comes to this music shit. Yeah, I can make those me and Mustard songs all day and write other people’s songs, but there’s another side. I’m just going to keep on changing and trying new sounds.