DH OFFICIAL has been consistently producing music for years. The Texas native, an independent artist from El Paso, currently residing in Dallas, is making moves as an independent artist and as a member of the Southern Super Friends. From his debut project, Young Black Scholar to his countless collabs on SSF projects and his features with other artists, DH OFFICIAL has carved out his own slice of the Hip-Hop pie.
DH OFFICIAL is a lyricist in true form. No words go to waste and are delivered with intent. He has music for all ears of hip-hop, a rare feat considering a lot of young artists only cater to their fans. He goes against the idea that music should be 3 minutes max. His more popular songs are well over that mark. What’s more, even across his scant discography, you can sense his sound and content maturing for the better. Young Black Scholar centers on a young black man from an urban community, who graduated from college, and is ready to share some of the experiences he learned along the way. While his latest project is something much more larger than that.
To Whom It May Concern:, presents a different DH OFFICIAL compared to Young Black Scholar in 3 specific ways. First, TWIMC: is a tight project. About 8 minutes is about 2 or 3 songs depending on an arrangement. Less run time means more cohesiveness in the long run and it shows. Second, the sound is more concise. The hard part with any lyricist is finding the right beat that won’t conflict or compete with the message. A hardship TWIMC: avoids with hit sound after hit sound for a nearly unskippable play through. Third, theme has matured for the audience. TWIMC: contains positivity and keeping focus on goals and ambitions despite the daily devices. Something more easily said than done. Though there are still the expected turn up songs, TWIMC: is very balanced between saying what it needs to say to the audience and uplifting in the right way that is more relatable and relevant than overbearing and out of touch.
When I had the chance to interview SSF’s DH OFFICIAL, I wanted to celebrate his work on his latest project, “To Whom It May Concern:”. The interview became a very real reality check. Following an episode, DH OFFICIAL came clean about his daily mental battles and expressed his interest in sharing a bit of his strife for others in similar circumstances. Though, this was far from the focal point as we also touch on his growth from his debut project, Young Black Scholar, as well as his identity as an artist.
DH OFFICIAL keeping cool in the heat.
Where are you from? How has your hometown influenced your content?
DH OFFICIAL: I was born in the state of New York, but I was raised in the borderland El Paso,Texas on the northeast side, off Dyer St. My home is my heart, and no matter where I go I always rep my city. You can hear it in my music. The EP, the Sun City, the Chuco, that’s in my heart and I put my heart in my music.
Describe the sound of DH OFFICIAL.
DH OFFICIAL: Dope. Wavy. Bass Heavy Melodies. Plus bars for days. If you really on the OFFICIAL vibe, you’ll mess around and learn something. My music is the expression of myself and the culture I was born into. Hopefully, the music takes you away from your insecurities and negative state of mind, and puts you in a place of happiness, positivity, determination, and motivation, etc.
How do you view the current state of Hip-Hop?
DH OFFICIAL: Right now, I think it’s a harder time to be in the game because it’s so over saturated, but it’s also so dope to see where Hip-Hop has come from. There are more artists out here who have taken control of their careers and are a driving force for pushing the culture forward. You just have to keep your ears and mind open.
How is your current release “To Whom It May Concern:“ different from your last project, Young Black Scholar?
DH OFFICIAL: From graduating, to performing, to long nights in the studio, each of these projects embody me as an artist and a person. I guess the difference are the times where I was at in my life.
DH OFFICIAL – black and white aesthetic
Who should be concerned with TWIMC:?
DH OFFICIAL: Anybody that wants a more in depth look at the mind and emotion of Yung DH [OFFICIAL]. A Lot of rappers scared to show their vulnerability especially with emotion. I wanted to address some of these feelings early on.
There are overtly positivity themes throughout TWIMC: especially in the songs “Best Regards” and “P.S.”. What made you want to explore positivity as a concept?
DH OFFICIAL: I would consider myself a spiritual person. I believe in duality. You need both positive and negative, good and the bad. There’s always a little bit of good even in the bad, you gotta stay focused on that positive. That’s what keeps you going.
There is a sense of constant struggle between juggling relationships and chasing dreams within TWIMC:, is this something you’re personally dealing with?
DH OFFICIAL: Everybody has gone through or will go through a growing process that requires you to maintain your foundation while you seeking to further yourself in your goals. Keep moving forward and believe in yourself. What is suppose to happen will happen regardless.
What keeps you grounded when you are struggling the most?
DH OFFICIAL: My spiritual relationship between myself and the Creator. All my external problems are only magnified when my internal problems are neglected. Alot of people, especially young black men be going through things mentally and spiritually. I have to speak on it because I know a lot won’t or don’t know how. I’m learning myself.
DH OFFICIAL w/ the official SSF beanie.
How does anxiety and depression affect you when it comes to your music?
DH OFFICIAL: Hip-Hop is my love. Hip hip is my escape. There’s power in the written word and the spoken word, so when I mention these positive uplifting messages, it’s a reminder for my self but also for those who struggle with the same thing. There so many people we lost recently due to mental health issues, I’m trying to do my part to help.
What advice do you have for someone that may also cope with anxiety and/or depression?
DH OFFICIAL: Gotta keep moving forward. It isn’t going away easily, but you got keep ya head up live each day for you. P.S. We blessed.
What artists have influenced your sound?
DH OFFICIAL: That’s a hard question. I love music, I literally hear inspiration from everywhere. My musical spectrum is vast. If you talking hip hop, too many: Tunechi [Lil Wayne], Wiz [Khalifa], Wu Tang [Clan], Kendrick [Lamar], Biggie [Smalls], [Curren$y] Spitta, [J.] Cole, Drake, Dizzy Wright, Joey Bada$$, Jay-Z, Trill Fam, 3 6 Mafia, Outkast, Yung Nation, SSF, of course. That’s just to name a few.
What drives you to make music in an age where everyone seems to be making music?
DH OFFICIAL: Everybody is making music, but not everybody has the same story. For those that listen closely, you can hear and conceptualize what’s goin’ on in my life, my goals, my faults, my ambitions, my fears all through my music.
What can we expect from DH OFFICIAL in 2019?
DH OFFICIAL: Content. Content. Content. Whether it is a single, or a music video, or an article, shows, or projects, you’ll be seeing a lot of DH OFFICIAL across your media. S/O the team to. Go get that new Southern Super Friends, Freeze Warning, streaming everywhere.
Check out DH OFFICIAL’s To Whom It May Concern: