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FOREFRONT: Roy Wood$ | Unlock The Underground




When we talk about young talent coming out of the city, Roy Woods has been up there for some time. The 22-year old stands out from the rest of the artist’s in the city because of his unique R&B sound. Roy Wood$ signed to OVO in 2015 and has been adding his own flavour into the music game since.

            Roy Wood$ was born in Toronto, but raised in the city of Brampton. He started to write music at the age of 16. Although Roy now has a passion for music, his first love was Football. He started playing when he was a kid and excelled throughout his high-school years. He was one of the star players on his team, playing Receiver/Safety. When his football days came to an end, Roy turned his full attention towards the music. His favourite artist growing up was none other than Michael Jackson. When listening to Roy’s music, you can hear the Jackson influence in his voice/sound. Growing up in the GTA, Roy was also influenced by some hometown artists. A few of his local favourites include PartyNextDoor, The Weeknd and Drake.

Drake – Toronto

The Weeknd – Scarborough

PartyNextDoor– Sauga

These three artists from different areas in the GTA helped Roy Wood$ shape his own style/sound and put on for his own city Brampton.

As a teenager, he would perform live at the local YMCA with a lot of people in the community in attendance. His style was different, as he explained most other artist’s would rap about what’s going on in the streets.

In an interview with Noisey, he explained how singing separated him from the rest:

“All of the rappers would come out and be freestyling in a circle. I would go up with something completely different, my flow and lyrics were completely different. All those guys were talking about street sh*t and I was talking about my past situations and relationships, plus I would sing too. All the girls would love the singing and they loved me.”


The word started to spread of this youngin’ who was bringing new sounds to the city. Roy was only 19 years old when Oliver El-Khatib from OVO discovered him. Oliver hit his Dm’s talking music and the two started to link up from then.

They got to know each other on another level, Roy stated in a No Jumper interview with Adam22:

“We connected from then on. That was after the Dej Loaf track… I think like a month or two after. We connected for months, we were just going back and forth having a conversation. Oli is my guy man. He is a real one. He held me down when I was like… He believed in it when I didn’t know what to believe in. I just knew I had and loved music.”

The next year in 2015, the idea started to spark of Roy Wood$ joining the label.

Drake had just opened his OVO Store in Toronto, where Oliver had a conversation with Roy. Oliver proposed the idea of him joining the label, and without a doubt, Roy knew his decision. Drake shot him a text welcoming him to the OVO family. Drake and Roy first met onset of the music video for “Energy”. The two clicked right away and built a relationship.

Roy had wrote Drama, which is featured on his first EP “Exis”. Drake hopped on the song and the rest was history. The world was introduced to Roy Woods$ in 2015 when Drama premiered on OVO Radio. He released Exis, with some notable songs such as Drama, Jealousy and Get You Good.

 Given an opportunity of a lifetime at a young age, Roy still had a lot of learning and growing to do. He would then release projects throughout the years such as Walking at Dawn, and Nocturnal. These mixtapes are where you can hear Roy grow and prosper. He made his way into the game and worked with different artist’s such as MadeInTYO, Swae Lee, Lil Yatchy, PnB Rock, Majid Jordan and one of his favourites PartyNextDoor.


His debut album “Say Less” dropped last year in December. It was a great project with many different vibes to enjoy. If you are happy, in your feelings or just chilling, there is plenty of music to choose from. You might’ve heard “Monday to Monday” somewhere on the radio as it was his hit on the album.

Since then he’s been on different shows doing interviews and went on his “Say Less” tour for almost 2 months earlier this year. He also opened up for “Aubrey and the Three Migos Tour”, which was an impressive 54-city tour. Roy continues to keep working on music and we can probably expect his 2nd album to release in 2019.

Roy Wood$ is one of the more unique artist coming out of the city. His music is refreshing and can most definitely get you into those deep thoughts. He also seems like a cool person. If you get a chance to watch some of his interviews, he seems like a genuine, humble and dope guy. He still has that Toronto vocabulary, so you will catch him throwing some words/phrases out there that others may not understand and it’ll make you crack a smile.

We leave you here with Roy Wood$ new music video to “Snow White”.

Roy Wood$ Exclusive Backwoods

Roy Wood$ Exclusive Backwoods


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