An Interview With: Davon Lavor
By Sean Lee
As a bohemian who is active in Los Angeles’ boiling hip-hop scene, Davon Lavor is more than just his raps. The artist turned rapper has made multiple appearances in music videos by Juice World and other up and coming rappers as well as having cultivated his passion for photography, modeling and music production. In a time where young creatives utilize social media champion artistry free from any particular medium, Lavor reigns supreme. CAMLTENT had the pleasure of catching up with Lavor over FaceTime despite his busy schedule for this interview.
Hi Davon! Could you tell us what you worked on today?
I’m actually about to get to work right now (it’s currently 9:30 A.M.). I’m finishing up a bunch of songs that I’ve started. My goal is to release a song every month, but with the music video shoots and whatnot it’s mostly been just a bunch of organizing. The hardest thing is really completing things. It’s easy to start stuff really quickly because of the rush from the initial idea but going back and finishing it is the problem. I’ve been taking more time off to work on this song I’m trying to put out in January. Basically instead of giving something all at once like a tape or project I wanna put out consistently good songs that bang.
Can you tell us a bit about your musical background?
I really don’t have one! I started making music two years ago, I mean I guess I played violin a bit when I was a kid but never really got into it ‘til I started making [hip hop]. I grew up listening to New York rap and Kanye shit. But as I got older I started branching out of hip hop and got into artists like Mumford and Sons, some real “Take Me Home” shit. A couple years ago I had a friend stay at my pad for a bit and he brought a home studio with him. I never really had the courage to rap until then, which was around May 2015. My friends used to be over all the time recording music but for some reason this one time they left everything and were gone that month. One of them had left ProTools open and for some reason. I just had this feeling that I had to record! So I got a beat from YouTube and recorded a song. I showed people and they said it was trash [laughs] but they liked my voice and lyricism. I actually used to rap in a really high pitched like Lil Baby [laughs again] but I just got tired of straining my voice so I had to change it up to what I got now.
Your latest release was "Hell of a Night," a song on SoundCloud that you decided to take down. Can you tell us more about that decision?
Oh yeah, I didn’t even tell my manager that I was gonna do that. I have this weird thing about dropping music and that time I was just like fuck it, I’mma just put a song up for 24 hours and take it down. I posted about it once on my social media and the people who fucked with it really fucked with it. I probably should’ve hyped it up more and posted more about it. I’m probably gonna do it again actually with this song I’m finishing right now.
In today’s modern culture hip hop marketing owes more to social media platforms like Instagram than ever. How has social media shaped how you make or sell your music?
I love social media. It gives you a platform for whatever you want to say, whether that’s good or bad, I don’t know. As an artist who makes music and visual art it helps bridge the gap between the two mediums.
Who is that girl in your SoundCloud Profile?
Shouts out Gaby the Baddie [laughs].
Can you tell us about other artists you are associated with and how those individuals came into your life?
I have a close inner circle. I met Black Freckles (Washington DC rapper who relocated to Los Angeles) back when I was first starting out at a photo shoot near USC and he introduced me to a majority of the artists I fuck with today. Your Grandparents (rap trio based in Culver City) for sure, Schmenna (Neo Soul Singer based in Los Angeles), shouts out Young Don with the big forehead, and Gold Franko who’s the first artist I’m exclusively producing. I take the Kanye West approach to music, I love collaborating with anybody who’s on their shit right now.
Is there a Davon Lavor debut album on its way anytime soon?
Not an album but maybe a nice sized EP coming to you September of next year (hopefully)!
This piece is by Sean Lee. Follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leee.