When it comes to musician’s origin stories, it can feel like you’ve heard it all before. But then you’re presented with a kid like Daenan ‘Kofi ’Gyimah and you realize that there’s always someone ready to bring a fresh perspective.

Moving to Los Angeles to pursue music, Kofi experienced a culture shock by leaving his native Scarborough for Bel Air, where the majority of his peers had grown up in a much more privileged position. However, the experience helped him to open his mind to thinking beyond Toronto rap’s local scene, while doubling down on the elements that helped to make him stand out. “If you’re black in LA, you’re African American, and that’s your history,” he explains. “Whereas in Toronto if you’re black it’s like, ‘Are you Caribbean or are you African?’ So, the music there is so much more heavily African, Caribbean and Haitian influenced.”