Patrik, Photo By Malick Issa

Patrik’s “Spadina” EP Highlights His Confidence As An Artist, Details The Good & Bad Of Living In Toronto

I met Patrik about three or four years ago when my brother and I caught up with him at Ritz along Yonge street for some much needed Jamaican food. He and my brother knew each other from Montreal and they were catching up on the many happenings of life and what they were working on and growing towards. I remember Patrik talking so passionately about music and his X10 collective and what it means to him. He was readying a drop at the time, and I assured him I would get it published online, so more people in the city could hear the magic he’s creating.

It wasn’t until recently when I caught up with Patrik at his Spadina EPparty last week that he told me I was “the first person from the city” that wrote an article about his music. We made a serious full circle that night and the growth and confidence as an artist was radiating off of him. “I’ve been getting more and more confident over the years and in different parts of my life,” he told me.

The venue for his party (Brimz on Queen) was spilling with people running in and out looking for Patrik to congratulate him. “There are guys I went to high school with ten years ago that are in here and it’s like freaking crazy, stupid crazy,” he said.

We were posted up outside, talking about his EP, his confidence in God, his strategically planned music videos, and the most personal single on the tape as we were located just a couple blocks away from Spadina street, where it all started.

Hit play on Spadina and read our full conversation below.

Your EP Spadina drops tomorrow. You just walked into a room full of people that all hugged you, all so happy for you, they’re proud of you. Can you tell me what you’re feeling right now?

I am so in awe and so thankful and I don’t even live here no more, you know, so it’s like I have a whole bunch of people at home waiting for me – these are the things that I pray for. These are the things that I bust my butt for, that I make relationships with people for, and not even so they can listen to the music but to actually have a real relationship. To walk in there and see my neighbourhood and see people from work and see people that I met years ago […] There are guys I went to high school with ten years ago that are in here and it’s like freaking crazy, stupid crazy.

Spadina is comprised of good and bad experiences in Toronto. Once it drops, do you think that Toronto has more to offer you musically or are you ready to jump to another city and be inspired by its surroundings?

I think Toronto has a lot to offer in terms of a critique, but I think when it comes to inspiration for music I don’t really think it has anything to offer me. It’s not an insult or anything but being here so long and getting to work with so many people I got to learn so much, you know, now that I have all this untapped information I want to go somewhere else and get that untapped information and move along, but the city itself is killing it.

It has this ability to make artists out of nothing, which I think a lot of cities can’t do, maybe in the states like Atlanta, New York. A lot of cities can’t do that and the one thing I appreciate the most is that people actually vibrate to the music I’m putting out cause it doesn’t sound like what the city is spreading right now.

So for [the city] to be able to offer me critique, support and feedback I think that’s big but like every relationship, you grow sometimes and you have to experience new things and I think moving to Montreal is going to give me an opportunity to do that and that’s why I did Spadina.

I was able to take all that information I got and be in a different place and create something supernatural and be able to release it and have the city look back on it and go ‘Woah’ like we were missing some stuff here.

I want it to be a conversation, people to be like ‘’why did you refer to that? Why did you make that as a reference? Why Spadina?’ This is my door for anybody else from downtown Toronto to be able to give their story and bring the city back together piece by piece, so I think of it as a Star Wars movie I’d say.

Sometimes music is created from hard times and used to soothe the soul. With the Spadina tape can you tell me what kind of song did that for you?

“Dear Momma Too.” To anyone who knows me, my mom is not a big fan of me doing music. She has this very complex relationship with me and music. She finds that it’s not fruitful for my soul, I would say, but I feel like I have a calling for this kind of music so this song is a very [personal] song, able to express all these things that my mom made me feel. To talk to her and tell her I know what you’re going through but this is for me I didn’t do this for you, and at the same time it’s also a song for everybody who had difficulties with their mom, as well.

[…] I want to be a risk taker and life is Martin Short so I’m not trying to be out here just doing what everyone else is doing I want to really use my passion, use my gift to try and do something. That song is very emotional for me and I hope my mom gets the chance to listen to it and look back and say ‘wow this is how he feels,’ cause parents they don’t understand. They really don’t.

I’d rather break records than crack a Guinness” is a lyric from “StayLone.” When I heard that I thought of self-control and instead of going out to party with your friends, you want to sit in the studio.

That’s exactly it.

Was it hard to always maintain control with your craft and not be tempted by one night events and parties?

I grew up in a Christian home so that’s always been something important to me and the Bible always talks about self-control and not being drunk or being filled with the Spirit so I always try to live by that code and it’s very difficult.

I’ve had some crazy experiences going to college, I was drinking a lot and I found that it was distracting me from the things I was trying to do so then I put a lot more energy in my craft and creating my music, creating my style, creating my own sound so it meant I had to sacrifice going to a lot of places and partying with people and chilling with girls. I had to really put that to the side so I’d be known for creating great music and being a great artist than being all involved in partying and social life. Sometimes you got to sacrifice either one to be able to master a craft and I’d rather do that so that’s what the rhyme meant.

In a previous interview you said that God gave you confidence, but when did you get confidence in God?

I got confidence in God I think in 2011. I took a step to become a Christian and I decided that life was out of my control after experiencing the things I had experienced. Ever since then I found purpose in myself and I found purpose in being able to do the things that God wants me to do by using my gift that he’s offered me.

Was there one specific incident where something happened?

I was doing really really bad in school, I got put into academic probation, I wasn’t putting good music out and I was feeling really flat in my freestyles. I had broken up with this girl at the time that I had cheated on and I just really didn’t recognize myself and so at that moment I was trying to find answers and I always thought, you know, I have the answers but then I realized I didn’t and then after that someone introduced me to Christ. So it was really cool and it was really good to have that as a new door of opportunity to really get to know myself, and when I started knowing that, that’s when I started being able to really know who I am and that’s where the confidence came from.

I’ve been getting more and more confident over the years and in different parts of my life.

The last three videos you put our were for “StayLone,” “Entitled” and then”Gang$ter Hippy.” In “Gang$ter Hippy” you were in the streets, not really showing your face. In “Entitled” you were more confined in a bright studio, showing yourself up close and personal and then in “StayLone” it was you in the studio putting in work. Was that pattern on purpose? The portrayal that sees where you are and how far you’ve come?

“Entitled” and “Gang$ter Hippy” were purposely done.

I noticed that right away.

That’s exactly why I wore the same jacket. Thank you, so the whole point of the first one was to be in the dark like no one can see you.

Climbing out of that cellar.

Exactly and then in “Entitled” it’s like okay. This is me and they’re from two different eras of when I was doing music.

I’m happy you [felt that] because the creative would look at that and be like there’s something up there but “StayLone” was just me trying to capture being alone, like me continuously staying on the pattern cause a lot of my videos there’s not a lot of other people in there, two of my best friends are in “Gangster Hippy” but you don’t see them a lot. Now we’re getting more creative even as the EP’s coming out – trying to create things differently. I got my art director who’s always creating different ways for me to approach different things so having that and having different people to work with is going to be even better for the process.

I remember when we first met, you were telling me about X10 as a collective, can you explain to me what the collective is all about?

X10 is the movement for the people by the people, so it’s all about positivity.

We’re trying to create a movement where creators can come and be implicated in whatever passion they have, whether it’s in dance or visual arts, music, your faith, your job, any career to able to push yourself times ten.

To give yourself the opportunity to succeed and give yourself an opportunity to help out. It’s not about putting yourself above everybody, you’re not above everything, everybody is at the same stature together and that’s how we’re forged.

Power Rangers can’t have a Megazord if they weren’t all five there. I’m trying to be like that and the movement is a representation of that and it’s growing and it’s cool that people are too.

Who would you consider to be the most underrated artist?

Most underrated artist. From the city or just in general?

You decide.

I think the most underrated artist, in general, would be, ah other than myself… no, I’m joking. Oh, Saba, from Chicago. Very underrated, but from the city, I think Lex Leosis doesn’t get as much credit. I think people haven’t given her solo work enough of a gear yet but she’s really popular in The States and she’s really interesting. I think her as a solo artist, doesn’t get the credit that she deserves. […] I’d say there’s a lot of artists that probably don’t get it but I haven’t listened to enough music in the city to be able to pinpoint those, but I’ll tell you what doesn’t get enough credit, love, and unity as an actual thing. That doesn’t get enough credit in the city.

Anything else to add before heading back in to perform?

Spadina EP drops November 9th, shout out to Chantilly for always loving me and always showing me love. X10 for the people and yeah, God is good man, God is really good.

*Cover image by Malick Issa



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