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BLAck pARty makes music for a living: Interview 2022

Moments before meeting Malik Flint, best known as a bLAck pARty rapper, singer and producer, I am introduced to his loyal fans.

It’s a Monday night in mid-June, and I’m expecting to meet him outside The Seville – an intimate lounge tucked away on the ground floor of the James Hotel in Manhattan where the event is taking place. of RCA’s Black Music Month – when a small legion of its supporters arrive at the entrance. They know about the private event because bLAck pARty accidentally shared the address on their Instagram page hours before the show, and they came here on a mission to sneak inside.

“Sometimes I forget that I’m a recognizable figure now,” he told me later. “I’m walking down the street and someone will stop me like, ‘Yo, aren’t you black party!'” Even though he has a long night ahead of him, he always makes sure to take a picture with every fan.

His fans came here on a Monday afternoon to try and hear songs from his upcoming third studio album, Humming-bird, because bLAck pARty makes music that fits perfectly into their daily lives. “I just like making music for life,” he explains. “One of my favorite artists is Al Green, and my pops were always about how my family played his albums back and forth at home because it was just life music. It was music for a living, and that’s the philosophy I use in approaching my own work.

With guidance from his RCA and Wolf + Rothstein mentor and good friend Donald Glover (who signed him to the label in 2019), bLAck pARty shaped Humming-bird throughout three years of living, learning and experiencing new things. Like Glover, he had his newborn while working on the album, and he learned to balance the new responsibilities of fatherhood with music by watching Donald do it first. “[Donald] had a child while working Wake up, My Love! I was therefore able to get a glimpse of it”, explains bLAck pARty. “All of those things are terrifying, so to have someone who is good at balancing all of those things and succeeding is great.”

To embrace tender and rejuvenating sounds on his debut album Mango, to distil the thriving energy of daytime parties and the warmer months into 10 tracks on endless summer, the rising artist has always been focused on creating music that doesn’t have a short shelf life, and Humming-bird is no different.

After the release of his new single “On My Way”, bLAck pARty sat down with Complex to discuss the creative process Humming-bird, which is due out on July 14. We also talked about the meaning of his name, what he learned from Donald Glover, and more. The interview, slightly edited for clarity, is below.