EditorialFor the love of music


For when you’re feeling social


Jonathan Knox

June 22, 2016

“I’ve never plateaued ever.”

It’s clear that Vancouver rapper SonReal has a career that is still very much on the rise. For close to a decade, Son has been honing his craft through independently released mixtapes and albums, eventually snagging a Juno nomination in 2012 for ‘Rap Recording of the Year’ for The Closers, his collaborative album with Rich Kid. Last year and this year, Son scored a couple more Juno noms for his very good EP, For the Town (and “Preach” video) though it’s now that seems to be the time for SonReal to really take things to the next level.

Chances are that you’ve already heard his infectious new single, “Can I Get A Witness” on the radio (or watched the video) and that’s just the beginning of things to come. Before his major label full-length debut arrives, Son is putting the finishing touches on a new EP titled, The Name, set to be released in August.

“It’s called, The Name, because after this no one will have any question who the name is… we’re going to let the world know with this EP.”

The response to “Can I Get A Witness” has been impressive even to Son, though he has a couple more hits up his sleeve with this new EP. The next single, “Soho” (which he describes as “very rap”), will be released in the coming weeks and from there Son plans to release the “very pop, very big” crossover track, “Hot Air Balloon” which will likely be inescapable from radio.

For The Name, there are no guest vocalists – it is strictly SonReal – although it does boast some genuine A-list producers. Big industry names such as RedOne, who was behind Lady Gaga’s massive debut, The Fame co-produced (along with his protégé Rush) Son’s “Can I Get A Witness” giving it a distinct pop flair. Also involved is Rahki, who has worked with some of rap music’s biggest stars, including Eminem, Talib Kweli, 50 Cent, and Kendrick Lamar (who Rahki earned a couple Grammys for with his work on To Pimp A Butterfly and it’s leadoff single, “I”).

In listening to SonReal’s musical output over his career, one of the first things you notice is that “Can I Get A Witness” is the most pop Son has ever sounded – especially compared to the harder sounding, For the Town EP. It’s this turn in Son’s music that has also brought him more fulfillment than anything he’s done previously. When Son speaks of his new music and the upcoming EP, his love of the material is clear.

“They’re my favourite songs I’ve ever done, they’re also the best writing I’ve ever done… also the most heart I’ve put into songs. I want to make the best music I can make and reach as many people as I can, and I want to make the songs I love the most.”

Fans have responded much the same way with SonReal’s new material, and they won’t be disappointed with what’s in store. Tirelessly working in the studio for close to 18 months, readying a hit-loaded EP, and following it up with an increasingly anticipated full-length debut, the sky truly is the limit for SonReal. “I work insanely hard and I think we’ve got a bright bright future ahead.”

Watch SonReal’s “Can I Get A Witness” video below and make sure you pick up SonReal’s The Name when it gets released August 12th on Universal Music Canada.