Bolo is an artist from Milwaukee Wisconsin. He has been writing music since the age of 8 years old. He is a founding member of the label Top Notch Entertainment (T.N.E.) and a member of the T.N.E. Flyboyz.
As a song writer and an established producer he has contributed to many of the groups projects and songs. As a solo artist he is diverse, brings strong delivery on the mic, and paints a clear picture of his life in his music. On a cool Winter day we got to catch up with the homie. It went something like this ..
HipHopLead- So Bolo how exactly did you come up with the name?
Bolo- My cousin Quik, who is tatted on my left arm, gave me that name. He really was the one that got me into music when I was a kid. He took me under his wing in regards to music and the streets. My last name starts with Bol so he started calling me Bolo aka (Boss Over Little Otha N*ggaz) but of course I don’t use the n.
HipHopLead- When did you make the transition from Producer to solo artist?
Bolo- Really I started one the artist side of things. My homeboys Young Nova, Philly Mill, and Doc Holiday really put me up on making beats. I liked everything about making them and got tired of paying for them. Writing and hitting the mic has always been my thing though as long as I can remember.
HipHopLead- What is the hiphop scene like in Wisconsin compared to the other regions of the US?
Bolo- Wisconsin, more specifically Milwaukee, is a funny thing. There are a lot of hungry and starving artists out here. There are a lot of people that I respect. There’s more talent here than people really understand. Compared to other places, our music scene isn’t as united as it could be. I think that has made it difficult for us to really make the impact and get the credit we deserve up here.
HipHopLead- What made you wanna get into HipHop?
Bolo- Music has just always been in my blood. Like I said my cousin helped me. We wrote my first song together. I love everything about the music, the stories, the rhymes, the connection with other people. I think more than any other kind of music HipHop is music that you can really see.
HipHopLead- Who were your influences to get into music?
Bolo- Well I don’t like to limit myself so I listen to everything. I’m talking from The Spinners, Temptations, The Bee Gees, all the way down to T.I., Pac, Wayne, and Gucci.
HipHopLead- What projects have you released to date?
Bolo- Man there has been a lot of stuff that we have put out. “Never Seen It Comin Vol 1&2 (2006/2007)”, “Never Turning Back (2007)”, “New State Of Mind (2007)”, “Back In Business (2008)”, “Back From The Dead (2008)”, “In T.N.E. We Trust (2009)”, “Fly Boii Musik (2012)” and my new project “Heart & Soul” is due out in April. So we’ve done a lot of work since 2006.
HipHopLead- Can you explain what services “Top Notch Entertainment” offers and how it was founded?
Bolo- Right now it’s just strictly music, beats, songs, features. Eventually I want to branch off into writing books, screenplays, and anything else that comes out way. I never wanted to be limited to what I get involved in.
HipHopLead- Any new projects coming out? Any features?
Bolo- Like I was saying “Heart & Soul” is due in April with features from my fellow Flyboyz Loc, Yung Fresh, and B-Nasty. I also got some assist from my partner Murda Blakk, Franchize, Doc Holiday, and Coo Coo Cal. After that I have a mixtape lined up that I’ve already completed and “Heart & Soul Part 2″ as well before the end of the year.
HipHopLead- We heard your track “I Aint Going No Where”, which will also be appearing on Digital Dynasty 24 (Hosted by Killah Priest). You were really venting on that track. What inspired you to make that type of record?
Bolo- Man Doc cut that beat on and I just heard it. I’m not one of them dudes that just writes or goes to the studio to say I did. I have to feel it and hear it. When he played that I was just like people think that we not working, or that we not making music or that we stopped. I’m gonna make me own lane and when I do “I Aint Going No Where”. That’s how it came about.
HipHopLead- You spit “When I was down and out and no one gave a damn/ now they see me doing good and they want to shake my hand/ It’s kind of funny when I see them and smile in presence/ But I done PAID attention and I Bought plenty lessons”. First off props on the slick word play. Do you feel like artists giving there all and challenging themselves happens less then it should in this current climate of Hip Hop?
Bolo- It’s hard to say. I’d have to say in certain aspects… yea. I know some people dumb their music down to do what’s trending or catchy instead of making the kind of music they want to hear. I challenge myself to stay fresh and stay hungry. I want to grow with every track, and every project I do. I can’t say that other artists don’t though because everyone has their own approach.
HipHopLead- What makes Bolo give that 110 percent. You have artists nowere days getting deals by spitting Cat In The Hat rhymes (laughs) ?
Bolo- I mean it’s just in me. I don’t wanna go half ass at this thing. Either do it 100% or don’t do it at all. My music represents me, my life, my story and my people. I couldn’t imagine just making a song just to finish a project. Everything I do has to have meaning and hopefully that is experienced when you listen to my music. On top of that my babies fam. I want them to see they can do anything they put their mind to and work hard for.
HipHopLead- I don’t want to spend too much time focusing on that track, but it was really dope and caught our attention. So one last thing we wanted to know is .. do you think being from a state like Wisconsin brings more haters or less? Another words being the place you rep isn’t as infused as say NY or ATL with rappers… are more people supportive or haters of your music venture? Because on “I Ain’t Going No Where” it seemed like it was more negativity then love..
Bolo- Hmmm that’s a good question. I think it’s a toss up. The people that I know and deal with got plenty love for each other. We want to see each other make it, it’s just a matter of taking the right steps to get there. Don’t get me wrong though. There are some haters out here that have something say or think they can do it better than this person and that person. But they haters and they just doing they job I guess. Imma keep doing mine and making this music you feel me?
I hear you! Here at HipHopLead.com we like to ask our features some questions that really are out of the norm.We do this because it gives the fans a broader outlook on you.So lets get it cracking ….
HipHopLead- Which is one of the best years for hiphop music in your opinion?
HipHopLead- Grade Obama A-F on his Presidency thus far?
HipHopLead- If you had to listen to this persons next album who would it be. Lil B, Trinidad James or Soulja Boy?
Bolo- Wow! Prolly Soulja Boy.
HipHopLead- Tell us a hidden talent Bolo has?
Bolo- Hmmm… hard one. I can clap with one hand (laughs).
HipHopLead- What was the best album you heard in 2012?
Bolo- “Life Is Good” from Nas.
Back To The Norm…….
HipHopLead- Who exactly makes up the T.N.E. Boyz?
Bolo- Me (Bolo), Loc, B-Nasty, and Yung Fresh.
HipHopLead- What have you guys released to date?
Bolo- As far as items that are online, “In T.N.E. We Trust”, “Flyboii Musik” and “Back From the Dead”. The other stuff sound quality wise isn’t proper so we haven’t put all that stuff out.
HipHopLead- How would you describe your style of Production?
Bolo- It has range from dark, to uptempo, to a down south sound.
HipHopLead- What are your weapons of choice when making the beat?
Bolo- Give me a some horns, some nice keys and a dope bass line and I’m on it.
HipHopLead- So let them know 1 more time what albums or mixtapes on the way?
Bolo- “Heart & Soul” this April, “80/20″ this June and “Heart & Soul Pt.2″ in October. In addition B-Nasty’s “Rated Nasty” and Yung Fresh’s “Wonne’s World” are due by the end of the year. That’s what’s planned. A lot can change though again I won’t limit what we can do.
HipHopLead- Any features worth mentioning?
Bolo- Just the ones from before; The Flyboyz, Doc Holiday, Young Nova, Franchize, Murda Blakk, Coo Coo.
HipHopLead- Before we get ready to bounce where can the fans purchase or download your music at?
HipHopLead- Name 1 song you’ve done that will have the HipHopLead.com viewers hooked!?
Bolo- I’d say “I Aint Going No Where” or “Wassup”.
HipHopLead- Thanks for hollering at us and in closing give any shoutouts….links to your sites….F.U.’S or whatevers clever
Bolo- Just you know shout out to the whole 414 music scene we on our way to the top. And def shout out to Tha Advocate for helping me with this. Make sure yall link with on twitter too @mrbolo2u I don’t do too many F.U. ‘s… Ima keep making these songs, getting this money, and shining. That’s FU enough!