Leon Rhymes and Ross Standaloft are from London and met at University a few years ago where their collaboration gave birth to Too Many T’s, a rap and hip hop outfit full of positive vibes and high energy funk! They now have a faithful following, us included, so we wanted to speak to them to find out more.
How has 2019 been for Too Many T’s so far?
Leon: Seriously cant believe how much we’ve achieved this year – I mean we’ve been busy the last few years but this year has blown them out the water. It’s been mental! Brilliantly mental.
Ross: Yeah we started the year with a 4 month tour around Australia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, India and finished in France. We’d never done the gap year thing so had this dream to combine music and travelling and created a concept called Rap Year. Ended up getting sponsorship and support from Pioneer, Shure, MiniRig and GoPro and managed to but together a 20 date tour with a shit load of fun inbetween the shows as we backpacked around meeting a bunch of legends.
Leon: We got back in April with the intention to chill a bit but instead jumped right into recording a new album we’d started planning and writing whilst on the tour – a collab album with 14 french artists we’ve met whilst touring out there.
Ross: So yeah we got on that but got some received some exciting bookings that took us to Hip Hop Kemp in Czech republic, all over the UK for festivals including Glastonbury, Germany for Fusion festival and up to Liverpool for Sound City which led to the latest tour in South Korea.
Leon: Yeah Sound City took us out to South Korea to Zandari Festival – a kinda SXSW of Korea. We played 4 shows out there and got tour the country and eat LOOOADS of fried chicken. We literally just got back.
Ross: Thankfully as we were about 1 more fired chicken meal away from actually turning into fried chicken.
Leon: Big shout and thank you to our agent Adam at This Is Now agency and Andy at Steaming Kettle PR!
You have probably been asked this question a lot, but where did the name idea come from?
Ross: Nah, never been asked that 😉
Leon: We wanted something that sounded good, looked good, that we could say on stage and had a good rhythm to it.
Ross: And we’ve got looooads of T-shirts and drink a lot of tea.
How have you managed to put out such strong high quality video content, and stayed so original whilst still being emerging artists? From Patterns, Hang Tight, and Dream to the new video for #Freaky ?
Leon: In all honesty we put a lot of energy and focus into the music videos. The visual is super important and we wanted to create unique videos & concepts that would stand the test and stand out.
Ross: Up until 2 years ago we were both working full time as well and we basically put all of our money into our music videos and called in favours from a lot of our extremely talented and generous friends.
Leon: We actually did a presentation on this at last years BBC Introducing event in London – how to engage with your community and pool together all your talents to create high end visuals on low budgets.
Ross: We’ve spent years touring and gigging (and partying) making loads of good connections and friends which is so important as an emerging artist. We’ve met loads of people who want be involved in our journey and help us where they can.
Your new album ‘La Fam iLL’ is about to drop with a very different angle than the previous one – tell us about what you have gone for this time round and inspired you guys to take this route!
Ross: The last album South City had zero features and was produced by two people – Odjbox and Flux Pavillion. It’s incredibly well produced but we wanted to create a more classic feel with the new album.
Leon: South City was released in France by Banzai Lab, a Bordeaux based label who have been amazing for us. They introduced to Cartel Concerts, a big booking agency in France, and we’ve now played about 80 shows out there and made friends with a load of artists along the way. We spoke to Banzai about the idea of an EP where we collaborated with some of the artists we’d met in France.
Ross: Banzai reached out to a load of the artists and much to our surprise and excitement nearly all the artists came back positively and the EP slowly became an album.
Leon: We were sent a ton of beats from the label and started writing whilst we were on tour early in the year then when we got back got in the studio and began recording demos then went back and forth with all the artists to finish the tracks.
Ross: We recorded it all at our studios, The Rattle, in London and Bobby Bloomfield (the bloody legend) mixed it all to tie all the tracks together and make it sound like all the individual tracks sounded like a collective album.
Leon: We’ve gone for a more cross genre alternative hip hop sound with a heavy lean towards classic old school beats with all the fun of that era of hip hop. We’ve managed to infuse some dub sounds, some funk beats and modern electro infused hip hop.
Ross: We’re super proud of it – go check it!
You have the ’Secret Handshake Tour’ around the UK and Europe tour coming up with Grieves – looking forward to it?
Leon: Hell yeah!!!
Ross: We’ve been fans of Rhymesayers and Atmosphere in particular for about 15 years so to be going on tour with one of their artists is massive for us and we’re buzzing about that.
Leon: We’ve toured in Europe before but this is gonna be our first proper full European tour with a proper tour bus and stuff. Aside from worrying about losing my voice with all the shows I cant wait.
Ross: Playing live is where it’s at, where we feel at home and every show is always a load of fun. We’ve got a load of new tunes, a brand new live show and can’t wait to hit the road with Grieves. Come see us!
Tell us about what you have been listening to and watching recently – any big recommendations?
Leon: Check out Anomalie – saw him in France last year and blew me away. Also Ady Suleiman and CW jones!
Ross: Anderson Paak. and Jonwayne on repeat at the mo!
Finally what is your tip of the day?
Leon: Smile. And try to keep a balanced life.
Ross: If you cant keep a balanced life, stop doing the bad thing.
We will be catching the boys on tour when they play at Brighton Green Door Store in November on their double headline tour with Grieves (who we interviewed earlier this month and you can read HERE ) !
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