Artist profile: Anderson .Paak

staff writer

From a six-bedroom house on his parents’ strawberry farm that was then destroyed by a California drought, to sleeping on multiple band members’ couches, Anderson .Paak has finally been blessed with the breakthrough that he has deserved.
This breakthrough came in the form of national recognition by being named a member of the XXL Freshman class and more importantly, receiving a nomination for Urban Contemporary Album of the Year for his album “Malibu.”
For those new to .Paak who might have seen him walk the red carpet with a huge smile, looking like the happiest man alive, you may know little about the trials and tribulations that he had to go through for him to get to this point.
.Paak grew up in Oxnard, Calif., which is right outside of Los Angeles.
He was born into a family of strawberry farmers, and very successful ones at that.
His parents’ strawberry farm was one of the most successful in the state of California, but his life started to become turbulent when his father nearly beat his mother to death, then served 14 years in prison.
Shortly after, his mother invested their savings into more plots for their strawberry farm, only to be hit with a drought, destroying everything they had.
Due to this, .Paak’s mother committed tax evasion and fraud, and was eventually caught and sentenced to prison.
.Paak’s interest in music started at a very young age.
Starting out with a love for the drums, he was said to be creating beats in his bedroom since he was about 13 years old.
He really got into music when he was in his late teens, then quit due to a girlfriend, but picked it back up in his mid-20s.
This is when he really started to gain some traction.
While .Paak was working on his debut album “O.B.E.,” which was released in 2012 under the name of Breezy Lovejoy, he was literally homeless.
During the time, he was drumming for one of his friends’ bands and to have enough money for studio time, he was actually risking his life working on a marijuana farm to pay for the expenses.
After all of these hardships, his greatest success wouldn’t come until 2014.
This is the year that he released what some consider to be his best work: his album called “Venice.”
The album featured the hit single, which most of you may have heard, called “Might Be.”
The album also included popular songs “Drugs” and “Paint.” This was the album that really created his name and laid the groundwork of opportunity for this follow-up and eventual Grammy-nominated album “Malibu.”
Requiring nearly two years of work, “Malibu,” was one of the best albums of 2016.
The album can only be described as a cross between hip-hop, rap, soul and a little bit of alternative rock.
.Paak combines beats with soulful lyrics to make a sound that is so unique, he is in his own lane with the style and the themes.
The album includes hits “Am I Wrong” featuring ScHoolboy Q, and personal favorite “Room in Here” featuring The Game as well as “Come Down” and “The Season / Carry Me.”
.Paak’s style is so hard to put into words, but what it comes down to is that he is simply a funky kid from southern California living the dream, creating music that he loves.
If you need a physical comparison, it could almost be described as a cross between The Beatles and Chance the Rapper.
At age 31, he is finally getting the credit that he deserves, especially being recognized at the Grammys.
Not only was he nominated for an award, but he also had a fantastic performance.
If you haven’t heard his music yet, get out and listen to him on Apple Music, SoundCloud or Spotify. You won’t regret it.

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