Sol has always been one to take the road less traveled — whether that’s declining to adopt an alter ego through a rapper alias or hitting pause on a burgeoning music career to travel the globe for 10 months. On The Headspace Traveler (out March 4th on his own label) he continues to chart his own course, mining his experience in all its complexity for an album that is both personal and universal.
After returning home to Seattle from his travels, he experienced fits and starts attempting to write the follow-up to his 2012 breakthrough, Yours Truly. But trying to replicate the same creative process after a transformative experience didn’t work. It wasn’t until he allowed himself to sit and process what he had been through — and was continuing to go through — that the album took form.
"The Headspace Traveler is the result of me diving deep into my mind in order to write what I needed to write on the most personal, fundamental level,” he explains. "As individuals and especially as artists many of the obstacles we face are inside our own head, and for me the battle carries out on record.
"There is something divine about making art, so naturally as artists we have look to a higher power, but with that higher power we also have to confront all of our flaws and darkest thoughts in the process,” he continues. “This dichotomy is what sent me so deep into my head. This album is the result of that journey."
Sol first captured an audience in 2012 with his Dear Friends EP trilogy. Following shortly after, he independently released the full-length album, Yours Truly, which quickly hit #1 in the U.S. and #4 worldwide on the iTunes Hip-Hop charts. Then, at what seemed to be a decisive moment in his career, Sol did the unexpected; he left.
As a cum laude graduate of the University of Washington, Sol was offered the prestigious Bonderman Honors Travel Fellowship as he simultaneously was receiving offers from record labels. Ultimately, he chose to keep blazing his own trail and embarked on the 10-month journey across the globe. While traveling, his music continued to flow as his new experiences only added to his already global perspective. Sol’s journey and his new inspiration deeply influenced his next project, the Eyes Open EP, which debuted in the Top 10 on the global iTunes Hip-Hop charts.
Just as Sol’s influences have expanded beyond music so have his aspirations. Whether it be through performing at major festivals such as Sasquatch!, Bumbershoot and the Capitol Hill Block Party; touring with artists including G-Eazy, Iamsu!, the Blue Scholars, Zion-I and Grieves; public speaking; or organizing and playing benefit concerts he naturally finds ways to connect with people.
First photo of 2017... sounds so futuristic.
📸 by Jason "Goonie" Tran
Feels like the only thing 2016 has been good for is the music... Humbled to have the ears of so many and to have been able to contribute to the world with my album #TheHeadspaceTraveler this year. Looking forward to what is next in 2017!
Happy and in Mexico on my birthday 🎈
Photo by Stephano Altamura
Been locked inside recording new music the past two weeks. 2017 can't come soon enough...
N'ap Kembe // We Are Strong 🇭🇹
Haiti Relief Tee available at shop.solsays.com/ now!
100% profits go to rebuilding schools in Haiti.
Today is #GivingTuesday and we are getting close to a combined $30k raised between the $15,746 raised at our #HaitiRelief show and the $13,052 we've raised for hurricane relief online so far! These are not just numbers, our efforts are saving and changing lives right now... If you're able to contribute, no amount is too small. 100% of your donations are going directly to the village of Les Abricots, Haiti to help rebuild the schools my aunt started 41 years ago and provide relief post-Hurricane Matthew. Make a contribution to our YouCaring page and include #YouCaringGives in your donation message or a social media post to nominate us for further funding from YouCaring!
So humbled by so many of you joining me in this effort. Love y'all. Donate here! http://bit.ly/lesabricotsrelief
Thank you, Seattle! Last night, together we raised $15,746 for #HaitiRelief with a sold out show. This is the proudest moment of my career and it would not be possible without y'all... If you missed the show you can still help us reach our separate online fundraising goal of 15k by following the link bellow. Together we can rebuild these schools, replant these trees, and help restore the community of Les Abricots. The work continues!
You can still donate & help us reach our online goal: YouCaring.com/lesabricotsrelief