More Than Music: An Interview with Ollie

Ollie may not have an exact reason as to why he left behind a college and football career, but it’s not hard to see that his heart belongs in music.

Growing up, he aspired to play in the NFL but after graduating high school the passion to pursue football professionally was lost. Instead, he became interested in the music scene.

“I think so many people coming out of high school are scared of disappointing parents or peers and feel like post-secondary education is the only logical route, but the more I grow up and mature I realize that everyone’s situation or goals are different and therefore have different paths,” he said. “University has become a huge expense and while some students are prepared to be thousands of dollars in debt when they graduate, I decided that I could work and put the money I saved towards pursuing my dream. I got a feeling every time I was recording a new song or releasing a project I had been working on for months, I knew right away this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Music was there for me when no one was, so I decided to spend all of my time becoming the best lyricist and artist that I could be.”

Labelling him as a hip-hop artist might be correct, but doesn’t completely encompass the reasoning behind his sound. Ollie grew up in a small town near Toronto, where he says country music plays a major part in his introduction to music. He was also heavily influenced by the live sounds of guitars and drums that he saw at rock concerts. Mix that with the classic hip-hop he grew up loving, and the unique performance that is Ollie starts to take shape.

His forthcoming EP, Maybe This Was Supposed to Happen, stems from his personal life and career. He tells a story not just of his life as an artist and what he’s accomplished so far, but of a relationship and the heartache that came from it.

“I hope listeners are able to relate to my story and the music on this project and find peace or comfort in some way,” Ollie said. “We all go through break-ups and hard times as well as confusion as to what our purpose is; it’s easy to get discouraged or feel useless like I once did. I pray that people are able to use my music as inspiration or hope when they are chasing after their own dreams or goals. The world can be a dark place and sometimes destroys people’s confidence or makes people feel like there is no end to the pain they are experiencing, my goal is to show listeners that they are not alone and help them find an escape for a few minutes at a time.”

Ollie lives by a mantra: more than music. Music was there for him when no one else was. Music was and still is so much more to him than lyrics and melodies; it’s the reasoning behind his self-discovery, the friendships he’s made and the support he’s longed for. If it weren’t for music, his life may have been playing a different tune.