For the longest time, Giveon thought he “sounded weird.” He resided in vocal depths far lower than those of his original heroes: Frank Ocean and Miguel. Embracing his baritone range was a winding path. As a child, he found himself singing along to his mother’s recordings of Mary J. Blige and Anita Baker. Even at a tender age, he could recognize his own skill. This, of course, was until puberty struck. As soon as puberty brought his voice to an exceptionally low register, he lost his youthful confidence. For years, he sat at the crossroads of insecurity and passion, as his interest in music continued to blossom. As a highschooler, Giveon managed to capitalize on his interest so much that he ended up in the prestigious Grammy Museum music education program. The experience proved pivotal to his artistic self-esteem, as leaders at the program told him to listen to singers within his register, like Barry White and Frank Sinatra.
Discovering successful artists with voices similar to his was the start of a reinvigoration that would last years for Giveon. Even as he entered adulthood, he remained inspired. So much so, that he even sought to make the most out of a 2015 chance encounter with SZA outside of a Bubba Gump Shrimp Co where he would later work for years. The Ctrl singer was kind enough to give him her phone number, a gesture which added fuel to the fire of his ambitions. While that might not have been the conventional big break, it certainly bookends Giveon’s steady climb to mainstream success. Only four years later, in 2019, he managed to secure a spot on Snoh Aalegra’s tour, a move that would usher him into a stratosphere where he would rub elbows with none other than Nicki Minaj and Drake collaborator, Sevn Thomas. While still unsure himself how their bond managed to prove so fruitful, Giveon has recalled how the super-producer recognized his potential and sought to include him in Drake’s hit single, “Chicago Freestyle,” off of the 2020 album, Dark Lane Demo Tapes. Since the release of the single, Giveon has released his critically acclaimed EP, When It’s All Said and Done, with Epic Records, and has shown no sign of stopping.
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