But don't take it from us. Listen to his new single Baby below.
Stay informed on our latest news!
But don't take it from us. Listen to his new single Baby below.
Where does the name come from?
Before I was a rapper, I was a trapper. That’s one of the names that the boys from the hood gave me. They used to call me Santana. Then my cousin used to be like, I love the way you dress, you look so saucy. So I collabed them together. It has that ring to it, huh?
How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style is very urban mixed with a little high fashion. Sometimes I just need to be comfortable, sometimes I need to be dramatic, so it’s just a very unique sense of style. Some days I want to put on a Nike outfit, other days I want to have on Chanel. Very material girl.
I love Chanel bags, I love Gucci sandals, I love Valentino perfume, I love Adidas, I love Nikes, I love Jordans, so you know I like a lot of the ‘in’ fashion labels. It reflects in my music style too.
My music style is very like—me living in Florida for a long time, I just have a very Miami, very south Florida sound. We all kind of like to rap about the same things. But it still reflects me—a lot of my music is my real life. The things that I talk about in my music are actually real life examples that I’ve been through.
How’s the Miami scene?
I love Miami.
I’ve never been but it seems pretty sweet.
Miami—girl, it’s so fun to be in Miami, it’s so pretty, there’s so many boys with money. And there’s all the brands I like.
What rappers do you listen to?
My favorite rapper is Gucci Mane. I love Gucci Mane, I like 21 Savage, Meek Mill, Lil Baby, Da Baby, Rick Ross, Moneybagg Yo, Meg the Stallion, that’s a lot.
If you could collaborate with anyone who would you do it with?
My top person would be Gucci Mane. My top five would maybe be Gucci Mane, City Girls, Moneybagg Yo, Cardi, and Meek. Oh, Nicki too. And if anybody else wants to come out of retirement that I would collab with, Jackie-O. Definitely.
When was the last time you felt starstruck?
I don’t think I have. I don’t think I’ve felt starstruck in a long time. Growing up my dad did security for celebrities. Kind of seeing that as a child, I remember realizing after a while, you know, we’re still people, we’re still human. Everybody still puts on panties one leg at a time.
A lot of the celebrities I meet already know who I am. So it’s more kind of like we’re just glad to see them, like “hey, what’s up, glad to meet you,” rather than “oh my gosh!”
What’s one thing you never leave home without?
My Chanel bag.
What’s one thing your fans can look forward to in the near future?
A collab with their favorite artist.
Left - Vest + sweater by Louis Vuttion
Right - Jacket + pant by Off-white
What made you choose to go with Nas and Mass Appeal Records—how do you think that decision has changed your trajectory?
100 percent. I feel like Nas is definitely one of the greatest, if not The Greatest—one of the legends, one of the icons and one of the people that I have always looked up to. I just felt like the connection was ill, ‘cause we’re from the same hood basically. I was in Queensbridge everyday. I could walk to his building where I was from, and me and his brother was super tight, so it was beyond just getting a deal with somebody or somebody just saying, “Yo wanna sign?” It was a really dope connection, man. Even when we first met we had so much in common and so much to talk about—just blocks, people, stuff that I know we can’t do with the average audience you sign. So as dope as it was that it was with Nas, it was a lot deeper than the music.
You’ve recently announced your debut album Survival. What can we expect?
Classic, in my opinion. I feel like I got something for everybody. The production is elite. The topics of discussion are worldly and something that anybody can relate to. I kind of experienced it from just talking about where I am from, the blocks and stuff like that to make it more relatable.
Left - Coat by Heron Preston, sweater by Moncler x Palm Angles, pants by Gucci
Right - Jacket + pants by Off-white
With survival comes success. What does success look like to you?
Success to me looks like no stress as far as your family goes. For a person to get successful, it comes with stress, but my thing with success is that my mom is good and doesn’t have to worry about nothing. That’s success to me. And also being able to sit back and watch the seed I planted. Not really sit back, ‘cause I’ve been working the whole time, but I’ve seen the work I put in from the older and the younger people around me. I want to continue that.
How is this one different than any other you’ve recorded?
I feel like Survival is my most detailed body of work. Probably my most—I wouldn't say passionate, but there’s a lot of pain just because of the things that were happening while I was recording this project. Like through my last two to three projects, somebody died in the making of them, and I mean that didn’t happen this time, besides Nipsy and my boy Cliff; they got killed. At the time when that happened back in March, I was active, so I was kind of off the rack for awhile. I wasn’t even in my own thoughts for days. I got back to that maybe around August. So this is also the most time I’ve spent on a project—going back and tweaking it and letting people hear it. All my closest people that either inspired me or that I inspired gave me feedback. So I’ve paid the most attention to this project. It’s my baby. It’s gonna mean something forever, ‘cause it’s my debut album on Def Jam, and from where I’m from, that don’t happen everyday.
Coat by Heron Preston, sweater by Moncler x Palm Angles, pants by Gucci
You’re a gemini, notoriously known for having two contrasting, yet equal sides. What would you say are your two personalities?
God and The Devil. Straight like that. I feel like I have a great heart. I’ll let you sleep on my bed, and I’ll sleep on the floor—I got a heart like that. But don’t cross me. Don’t try to play with me or think I’m dumb. I can be a whole other person. That did happen with a few people in my life. They’d meet one day, and they ended up knowing. I gotta say that as I have gotten older, my geminism cooled out. It used to be hot, cold, hot, cold, hot, cold, all the time. I truly believe that shit is real, ‘cause me and my father are both geminis. I’m June 3, and he’s June 8—and I wouldn’t call it bipolar, but it was like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde shit, you know? He was cool in the morning, and then at night, he is speaking to you like, “Fuck outta here!”
I want to also talk about your role as Method Man on Wu-Tang. What was the process like getting into that character?
It was a challenge, but I was relieved when I got the lead as Meth. I went into the audition two times, and then I got the role. Maybe a week or two went by before I actually chopped it up with Meth, so I was panicking for a little bit. Then I went on set with him, chopped it up, got the vibe with him and really did my research on him as a person. I talked to people that know him and stuff like that. It made it a lot smoother for me. I couldn’t get out of his character; I’d be leaving the set and still be Shotgun, and it was dope, ‘cause I always wondered what it was like for actors to become their character. You know they say like Heath Ledger (RIP), when he played the Joker, he locked himself in a room and turned into the Joker. So it wasn’t that extreme, but I was definitely on some Wu-Tang shit. I was listening to all of the interviews, watching all of the videos—I was just totally consumed with Wu-Tang.
Left - Vest + sweater by Louis Vuitton
If you could go back and give your younger self a piece of advice, what would you say?
Relax. Think about the consequences of your actions, and know that shit will get better. I had a mental block up until a certain age. I didn’t know where I was going. I was watching a lot of people pass, go to jail, and shit like that around me at a young age. So it kind of had me thinking, “Well this is life. This is what it is.” And Nas changed that for me, to be honest. He moved me out of the projects. He showed me a different outlook on life and what I was capable of becoming. He gave me a different outlook on life that I was able to show others. You know, it’s a chain reaction. So, I would definitely have told my younger self to calm down. I mean it ain’t that serious—focus on your craft a little harder. There’s things I wish I could delete. It’s helped make me the man I am today, but there’s stuff I’m not proud of. But I had to do all of that to get right.
One last question, how many times have you watched Belly?
Seven billion, man.
Though the last 'Boo party wrapped in 2013, and in 2014, Rohan flew to London. Since living in Europe, Rohan has only continued to release sounds made for the club (under Bell Towers, duh), and expanded his portfolio. From playing Boiler Room to a residency on NTS Radio, and endlessly cutting those 12” records for Berlin's infamous CockTail D’Amore, Bell Towers tolls for neimand.
Years of clubbing experience can either harden, or enrich one’s mind. Underground parties are having a renaissance right now, across the globe. Music fans from various demographics emerge under the discoball to experience pure ecstasy, sans substances. Returning to the dancefloor with “Juicy Blend”, ahead of his forthcoming EP — out on Public Possession, and Cascine, Dec 6 — Bell Towers' new music video proves to be a seamlessly sibylline transition. Essentially, it is a meta club track about the club itself.
If you’re ready to groove once more, voyeuristically preview the video premiere below.