Rokstarr Hollywood: A Synthesis
With Jamaican and Ethiopian parents, Rokstarr Hollywood is the product of the old world and the new. Blessed with a love for music from a young age, Mathew Asefaw honed a craft he would soon grow to love by experimenting with melodies at home. Discovered by a choir director from Lawrence Heights Middle School, Rokstarr took one step towards a goal and enrolled in the ethnically diverse North Toronto institution. A member of the choir that toured the city performing a blend of traditional gospel and hip-hop, Rokstarr's raw talent converged with classical training.
Appearances in Detroit as part of a YMCA initiative, Reader's Digest and Breakfast Television were followed by Vaughan Road Academy, where Rokstarr became part of a rich eclectic arts program that boasts the likes of Neve Campbell, Ellen Page and Drake. There, a burgeoning career as a performer would meet its next junction, and the decision was made to focus on writing to brew with the melodies. An artist was born, and the hybrid of dexterous flows and saccharine harmonies would soon draw the attention of producers.
Local legend DJ White Owl gave Rokstarr his first cosign before releasing 2 Sides of A Coin, hosted by Toronto tandem DJ Ill Kids. This gave Rokstarr his polish. Like an alloy, the raw freely combined with the refined, and here we are.
"Look-It Look-It" is Rokstarr's first single off 2016's 416, and as a placeholder for an emerging star, it is the culmination of years of work. Organic messages mixed with sophisticated rhythms and narcotic hooks have given the world notice of a music that reflects this seasoned performer. A worldwide response has followed, and sites like DJWhooKid.com and World Star Hip Hop have showcased Rokstarr's varied sound for hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic fans. And there's more from an artist who refuses to be content. The follow-up video, "Sex No More", is again a visual thrill with a song to match, and just as Rokstarr's flows and harmonies approach the calculable, they switch. Hypnotic hooks and sinuous bars are the mark of an artist that is a mix of several variables, then when combined, are bound to create instant magic. Keep two eyes on Rokstarr.