Baltimore, MD – Whenever a group manages to make a few songs that capture the attention of older listeners by rekindling that good old 90s feel, they get put into a box — with the quickness. For some, it’s a role that forces them outside of their comfort zone. However, emulating a sound sometimes translates poorly to larger bodies of work.
It can also result in colossal fan base dips when it becomes clear that the magic was a one-off.
That’s likely not going to be the case for Jayy Grams, Von Wilda and Hayelo — who make up the buzzing Cinematic Music Group-backed group LOWFi. Having all been raised on a healthy dose of Hip Hop by younger parents, their youthful energy and evident penchant for bars have made them a hot commodity on the indie scene.
Nothing was overnight with the trio. As they break down to hitmusic, it was their unwavering belief in themselves that put them on the map. In the most Hip Hop of fashions, the scales tipped with a freestyle.
“I made a poll on Instagram one day and was like ‘Y’all think I could make XXL Freshman cover,'” Jayy says. “I thought I’d get messages like ‘Keep striving’ and things like that. Instead, it was like ‘Fuck that, you’re delusional … you crazy man.'”
It was that response that lit a metaphorical fire under the Baltimore MC, inspiring the freestyle that changed everything for the LOWFi team.
“I made a freestyle (and video) to counteract everything that everybody was saying and I sent it to Jonny Shipes [of Cinematic Music Group],” he says. Though he’d sent stuff to Shipes in the past, he decided to try again — and the rest (as they say) is history. A month later the boys were flown in and the details were mapped out.
Jayy has since established himself as the unofficial leader of the group, having already two projects on the Cinematic imprint, Grime & Basslinez and Good Times. Still, pushing the overarching movement remains at the forefront for everyone (including Jayy) for the time being.
“The Allegory put things in motion for us as a whole,” Jayy notes. That’s when a whole bunch of people started really finding out about LOWFi — and then finding out about Von and me, specifically.
“I feel like the people that discovered us during that time became devoted … it was like [that project] had a little coke on it,” he adds with a laugh.
Von echoes the sentiment, adding the collective surprise the group experienced after seeing the reactions from (new) fans.
“I didn’t understand,” he says humbly, “so many people were saying this is one of the best five for the year. ‘This is my favorite project of all time.’ It was crazy too, cause [The Allegory] dropped a little early.”