Nice To Meet You
"Nice To Meet You" is a bit of a stretch. To be brutally honest, not that many people even know GoldLink at all. The select few producers he works with and those that have been lucky enough to catch one of his live shows have seen him in action, but that's about it. He says that even some close friends and family still don't even know that he is GoldLink, or even a rapper at all.
What we do know is that he was born in our Nation's capitol, and moved from motel to motel after his childhood home burned down. He eventually moved to Maryland, and then subsequently Virginia, where he resides currently. He has said before in interviews that he doesn't smoke, drink or do drugs and that 50 Cent's Get Rich Or Die Trying is his favorite album. A DMV lifer, his music bears the raw storytelling nature of traditional East Coast hip-hop, but with none of the traditional-ness. He's carefully crafting his own individual sound, and he seems to be evolving within that soundscape with every new release.
Hiding his identity from the public seems to allow him to focus solely on the music, not having to worry about an image to uphold with the public. Think how much more dope music we'd get from today's artists if we cut all the selfie-taking time out of their day. He wears a mask at his live shows initially, before pulling it off when the time feels right. So it's not that he's totally invisible, you just have to know where to look. We had to ask what the motive was in hiding his face for so long, and GoldLink explained, "I really wanted people to get to know me for my music before anything else. Especially in rap, where so much of an artists popularity is based around image, I needed to make sure my fans were with me because of the art before my face."
GoldLink describes his sound as "future bounce", and it's quite fitting. If you listen to a song like "Sober Thoughts," you hear some hints of 90's funk and R&B, and maybe a dash of Andre 3000. He has a unique ability to not let his flow get in the way of a prevailing melody or groove, instead almost building his verses around the most melodic parts of the song, making it extremely easy to vibe out to. Good luck getting it out of your head any time soon. We asked if the enormous shift in hip-hop to a more melodic sound over the last year or so made it the perfect time for him to make his mark. He told us, "Most definitely. I want to make people dance and enjoy themselves while listening to my music. For a while, it seemed like music was gravitating away from that, so I'm just trying to pull it back."