I stumbled across ROBy at the January edition of the immaculately curated monthly hip-hop showcase The Thesis—excellently produced by We Out Here Magazine and XRAY.fm every First Thursday at Kelly’s Olympian. Backed by KPSU DJ Rockwell, the 22-year-old emcee (formerly known as Yung Rob) bounced around the small stage igniting the at-capacity room and working through a set of cuts from his debut project, The Red Carpet, released this past September (and available for free download here).
Portland was feeling his swagger and when ROBy made his way to the confident “Around It,” it was obvious that the track was a standout. Braggadocious without being off-putting, the banger “is about overcoming obstacles while understanding the journey won't be a walk in the park,” ROBy explains. “I’ve been through a lot in the past six years, so a lot of the motivation behind this song comes from my past experiences.”
After Kelly’s, ROBy hit the road, which ultimately led him to his birthplace—Los Angeles—where he also shot the brand new video for “Around It” (below). And although the Madison High grad has been holding it down in NE Portland since he was 12, he plans to move back to L.A. in the coming months “to expand my brand and to network in a bigger market” as he looks to build on the momentum he’s established. “Portland is great and the music scene is as healthy as it’s ever been, but as an artist, you owe it to yourself to put yourself in the best situation to win,” he explains.
Next up: “I plan to release a couple of singles as I continue to work on my next project,” he says. “I have more videos in the works and I'm very excited for people to hear some new music I've been working on.”