We had the good fortune of connecting with Solomon Cruz and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Solomon, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
My favorite quote I ever heard, well I have two. The first one is my own “I don’t make right or wrong choices, I make decisions” It was a lyric that I said in a song called “#SmellTheFlowers” which I wrote to kind of put a light on my self-doubt, and to overcome it. It was so impactful to me because when I wrote it I was like-“Man, someone is going to resonate with this bar” We spend so much time thinking about our actions after acting on them, and regretting it- or we never make a choice for fear of failure so much that we end up failing in the first place. This quote, helps me snap out of that self-conscious fear that would’ve prevented me from doing the things I wanted to do. In efforts to not look coincided, my second quote is “Treat others how they want to be treated” It’s a variant of the Golden Rule “Treat others how you would want to be treated” with a caveat that transforms the Golden Rule from being subconsciously arrogant to consciously mindful. I know that I want to be treated a certain way, however that may or may not be how the person I am speaking to would like to be treated. If I am mindful of their needs, I can formulate my message to them in a way they would best recieve it.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am an Independent Rap Artist that gains inspiration from my past experiences and environment. I like to have each track I do to have a piece of me on it. My goal is to have the listeners play a song, any song, and say “I learned something about So-Low just now”. The main thing about me that sets me apart from others is that I don’t follow trends, but rather my own personal inspiration. I make the songs that I want to make that I know my listeners want to hear. I got to where I am today professionally by creating goals that were structured, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time orientated (SMART Goals). For example, instead of me saying “I want to increase my audience” I instead said “I wanted to expand my audience on a specific platform by said date. I would then set up multiple tasks for me to accomplish that were as specific as possible for me so that when the time frame was up I could self-grade my progress. It absolutely is not easy, and a lot of the things I did other people would find mundane. In today’s world, the artist cannot simply be “Just the talent”, we need to be our own marketer, promoter, and manager. To put it in Rap terms, I had to be both Biggie and Puff Daddy. I overcame these challenges by staying focused and self-motivated. There’s no real guide to envoke “Want” either the artist wants it, or they don’t. Luckily for me, this is something I absolutely desire. The main lesson I learned on my way to increase my audience is that if people start critiquing you, that means you’re doing something great. The listener will only care if they see you care, and if you’re surrounded by people that only say “This sounds good” then you’re headed in the wrong direction. I want the world to know that I am 100% authentic, and it took consistency and discipline that got me here.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If one of my best friends were coming out to visit the area, the first place I would show them is Camelback Mountain so that they can take in the view of the city. I would then head over to Thirsty Lion at Tempe Marketplace so they can experience their steak and great drink selections. I would also head over to The Bridge Improv Theater to experience some of the best in-house talents in Short/Long Form Improv. We would obviously catch a Phoenix game (Diamondbacks, Suns, Coyotes) mainly because the Arizona sports culture is electric. We would hit up Casey Moore’s Oyster House to capture the chiller nightlife of AZ, but if they want to go on Mill Ave, that’s nothing but a 5-minute walk. IF it’s First Friday we’re taking in the culture more in Downtown PHX so we can see the urban art, or we can go to Second/Last Friday in Mesa for an entertaining more family orientated stretch of art. We absolutely have to go to The Duce for great drinks, dancing, and indoor cornhole. At some point Chandler Fashion Square Mall to shop, and then head over to Benihana for their top tier Bahama Mamas (Don’t judge me, I know what I like haha). I would end the time with either Gravity the indoor trampoline place with the most intense SkyWalk I’ve experienced, OR we could go to Main Event for Bowling, Laser Tag, and great food.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My Engineer Freeze for recording my music, X for helping me with my growth, and Jay2Gud for keeping my mind sharp.