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Meet duvol of Tell Your Friends in Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to duvol.

Thanks for sharing your story with us duvol. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I’ll go ahead and start back when I was a kid. I was born in Charlotte, NC but grew up in Columbus, Ohio. Music was very important in my house. On weekends my dad would tell us to turn off the TV, but we had a jukebox. And he would have us find music from his collection we loved and he made us CDs for us to listen to. Ever since, music quickly became my main priority in life, even when I didn’t know it.

My parents were very into the 80s New Wave (The Cure, Depeche Mode, The Smiths, New Order), etc. that played a huge role on me. I was seven years old singing, pretending to be Robert Smith, from The Cure. They were both very into the Trip Hop scene that took over as well. Portishead and Moby played a big role in my childhood as well. Over time I slowly discovered an area of music I was never taught before. I heard 808s and Heartbreak and it easily became my favorite album ever. So influential. Kanye changed my entire way of thinking with that album. I came across Travis Scotts’ music in 2012 and that’s what really made me start trying to create. I hadn’t heard anything like that at the time. I wanted to be making music 24/7. I couldn’t get enough. It became an obsession almost.

I was a quiet kid in school. I wasn’t academically gifted. As I got more into music, the more I would skip school to go home and make beats, practice singing, or just studying areas of music in general. Kids used to judge me when they didn’t even know me. So I stuck to a few close friends who were just as into music as I was. Those were the time’s Kid Cudi really helped with sanity—another favorite artist of mine.

After high school, I went to Hocking College, near Athens, Ohio, for audio engineering. It was a great place to build relationships and studying something I loved. I didn’t need college, but I’ll never regret going. My professors and friends really helped shape me into who I am today.

Four or five years ago, I found this kid on Tumblr who had sent me a demo to listen to. It blew me away. 451 became not only my favorite artist but a dear friend and our friendship slowly started building relationships around itself. Meeting Loner (producer), Kill September (producer), and Mark Cruz (manager) and more, has been a blessing. Seeing everyone improve with each song. It’s inspiring. Building relationships is so key in this industry. We all just consistently made music together, sending each other demos and ideas. Eventually, it started clicking. We didn’t all meet in person until 2018-19. But it had felt like we all knew each other for decades.

After graduating from college, I worked full time to save up to move. In March, I moved to Los Angeles. Sadly we got to LA a day before COVID broke out and the lockdown was initiated. I moved at the worst possible time, but I’ve made it work. Which makes me believe we can get through anything. I don’t regret moving when I did and I can’t wait to see what happens as time moves forward!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It’s pretty rare you see a smooth road on the come up. There’s a lot of adaptation needed. So much patience. It gets to you after a while. You want to succeed so badly. You want the world to see all of the efforts you’ve put into your art. But it just doesn’t happen overnight. So I believe in putting energy into things I can control. I just want to get better every day. There’s always room for growth. However, that gets in the way of things sometimes. It’s tough to be content on things you’re working on when you’re always in competition with yourself. I think it’s important to enjoy the moment you’re in. Have fun with the process. Enjoy every victory but strive for more at the same time. Balance is key.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
“Tell Your Friends” is a talent management company that really focuses on the youth of the industry. It is going to be really special with consistent growth, and over time it will expand. Mark organizes events around LA to inspire and dive into the next generation of the industry. I really want to do more of those events. It’s all really exciting and I can’t wait to see what’s next with some of the ideas we have.

I’m kind of the wild card for the team. My main job is the day-to-day management for 451. Curation, and organizing for projects, going through ideas, helping with mixes. Anything in that realm, and I’m your guy. I also do a lot of production myself. My music Is a little out there. I’m in love with movie soundtracks. I really like experimenting and crossing genres.

I think what sets me apart is the fact that I enjoy being apart of each step. I love managing, and being that day-to-day guy, I enjoy producing, singing, mixing, writing. I love it all. I want to be apart of so much. Why do only one thing? You know?

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I meet The 1975 in LA in 2018. And although it’s not a “proud moment”, I did get to listen to their new music with them and ask them a few questions that really shed some light on who I wanted to be in this industry. That was an epiphany type of experience that means a lot to me.

I think my proudest moment is being one of the executive producers for 451’s upcoming project. It hasn’t been easy but it’s been a really incredible time organizing the project with him, working on ideas, and keeping him going. It has inspired me to work harder and to keep improving every day. It’s a real blessing to be able to work with your favorite artists and to be able to consider them close friends. I’m really proud of the team. Even when it gets tough, it’s all worth it.

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Image Credit:
Peteros Mekonnen
Hassan El-Amin
Faiz Ghori

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