The R&B duo release new track “Stop Playin”, signalling the start of a new, ambitious chapter.
Following up an EP that features the likes of Jeremih, Wiz Khalifa and Jessie Reyez is no mean feat, but “Stop Playin”, the slick new track from R&B powerhouse THEY., confirms the Californian duo’s rising talent.
With “Stop Playin”, THEY. moves into a new chapter which aims high whilst sticking to their roots. Dante Jones and Drew Love are undoubtedly changing the game with their “grunge R&B” sound, consistently releasing highly-acclaimed songs and touring with Bryston Tiller and 6LACK, and this is just the beginning for the duo.
We chat to Dante and Drew about their influences and some of the best advice they’ve received…
What’s your earliest memory of music?
Drew Love: My earliest memory of music is listening to Luther Vandross and Barry White in the car with my mom. That’s definitely where I get by smoothness from.
Dante Jones: I have so many good memories from back in the day, one that comes to me right now is sitting in the basement with my cousin watching the flip out about the Boyz II Men “Water Runs Dry” video premier. They were in the sand and my cousins started crying and shit.
Who was your favourite band or artist growing up?
Drew: Growing up I loved Backstreet Boys and NSYNC like every other kid. I knew every word to every hit they made. “Here We Go” by NSYNC was my shit though .
Dante: It just kinda happened. I didn’t really have many expectations about when I would really be able to music full time. I just worked everyday at my craft and took advantage of every opportunity I could.
When did you know you wanted to do this full time?
Drew: I believe it was around 2013 or 2014 , I was making music with my boy Nikko Lafre. As soon as I put my first music out independently on blogs and got an invitation to come to L.A., I left and never came back.
If you could collaborate with one person, who would it be?
Drew: Frank Ocean, hands down.
What’s your favourite of your lyrics?
Dante: “I get my drinking for my daddy” from “Pops”.
What’s the best live gig you’ve ever done?
Drew: For me it’s a three way tie between Panorama Festival in NYC, Sumol Summer Fest in Portugal, and Lollapalooza a few weeks ago in Chicago.
Who is one band/musician killing it right now?
Drew: H.E.R. is shredding it. She’s so talented instrumentally and vocally. Her hard work and dedication to her craft shines through in her music and live performance.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Drew: Take everything with a grain of salt. Don’t get too high or too low.
Dante: You are only as good as your next song.
What’s your goal for one year from now?
Drew: A year from now I want to be done with our third album and I want to travel to more places I haven’t been like Asia. I want to see how far our music can reach.
What are you motivated by?
Dante: I want to make a classic, Purple Rain/Thriller level.
Do you give much importance to fashion and public image?
Drew: I don’t think I did at first , but now I definitely pay more attention to it. I don’t let it dictate everything, but the more cognizant I am of that the better I feel about myself as an artist and full package.