April 3, 2021

Read the full interview on Flaunt.com!

Musician Tory Lanez is not stopping until he gets to the top. Hailing from Toronto, the rapper, singer, songwriter, and producer exploded onto the scene over a decade ago with his undeniable talents and versatility: a smooth, sultry voice that not only blessed the R&B game, but the ability to spit bars that gave rappers a run for their money. Lanez swooned the hearts of music-lovers all around the globe, with an output mostly inspired by beautiful women and real-life experiences.

To date, real name Daystar Peterson boasts over 18 million monthly Spotify listeners and over 1.7 billion Youtube views combined… and he doesn’t plan on letting his foot off the gas pedal in the slightest. With hit singles such as “Say It” and “LUV,” the latter which was nominated for a Grammy in 2017 for Best R&B Song, Lanez seems to have figured out his own recipe for success: creating timeless, yet modern music that’s so catchy, you can’t help but want to listen over and over again.

Now, Lanez is putting on his entrepreneur hat and stepping into corporate status: notably separating from his major label, Interscope Records, after fulfilling his contract… but not without a bang! 2020’s The New Toronto 3 was his last tape with the major label, and Chixtape 5 from the year before was his last project signed under Benny Blanco’s Mad Love imprint—both of which left fans in a frenzy.

Excited as ever to be stepping into the independent world, which means owning his own masters and publishing, Tory even rapped on “Letter to the City 2”, stating “the next move is going fully independent, and any label offer under a hundred mill’ is just offensive.”


PRIVATE POLICY  shirt and  GALLERY DEPT.  pants.




FENDI  suit and shirt and  NIKE  shoes.

FENDI suit and shirt and NIKE shoes.

Regardless of what’s happening in the world, Lanez treats music like his baby. A perfectionist when it comes to his craft, the 28-year-old spends the majority of waking hours in the studio, creating from a place of love, passion, and vulnerability. Most recently, he unleashed his highly-anticipated PLAYBOY R&B capsule which quickly went to #1 on Apple Music’s R&B/Soul Music Charts. This project came off the heels of his rap capsule Loner, which featured Melii, Lil Wayne, Tyga, Swae Lee, Rich the Kid, and more. Lanez exclusively dropped early tracks from PLAYBOY as NFTs (non-fungible tokens) on the digital blockchain, which sold out in under two minutes, cementing him as an ahead-of-the-curve artist, while the current gold rush of digital artworks and the new age of propriety captivate the art and media worlds.

Atop all this, the artist finds time to run his own label, One Umbrella Records, signing acts such as VV$ Ken, Davo, Melii, Papi Yerr and Mariah The Scientist. And let’s not forget his hilarious, out-of-this-world personality that kept the masses entertained via Quarantine Radio as we were all cooped up inside our homes.

Flaunt caught up with Tory Lanez, who currently resides in Miami, but had rented out a beautiful house in the Hollywood Hills for a week, catching a vibe and recording good music. Read below as we discuss his new R&B project PLAYBOY, collaborating with Chris Brown, going independent, being homeless, shooting “Big Tipper” with Melii and Lil Wayne, his forthcoming Reggae capsule, love for fashion, creating alkaline water, and more!





You just released your R&B capsule, PLAYBOY. Are you a PLAYBOY?

A little bit. At certain times in my life, I’ve been on both sides. I’ve been the committed guy, then I’ve also been the playboy. I call myself the lone $tone playboy, in a way, because I live a very bachelor-like life. Also because I love women, and I have a way with women. I’ve always felt that was a dope thing about me.

You’ve always been R&B, this is your shit. What is it about this project?

Honestly, this project is a very personal project. Melodically, it’s an incredible piece of work. I spent a lot of time on it, all the songs came from a real genuine place of emotion and vulnerability.

Is this your most vulnerable piece of work?

I can’t say that, because all my music is very real to an extent of what’s going on at the moment. I don’t ever try to compare times. I wouldn’t say it’s the most vulnerable, but I would say it’s very vulnerable and also very open and honest.

I know the last one had crazy features, so are you pulling in the R&B greats on this one?

No, I only have Chris Brown and my cousin Nyce B. Somehow, someway, he makes his way into all of my secret projects. [laughs] He’s the only feature that’s secretly tucked in. He’s on three of the Chixtapes, my only R&B project where it’s mostly solo except Chris Brown.

You recorded ‘Feels’ with Chris Brown in Mexico. How’d that happen?

He had called me and told me he was out there, I said ‘I’ma pull up.’ I pull up out there, and we spent a couple days vibing, being away from America for a little bit. We recorded it out there, it was a vibe. Everything was good, everything seemed to transcend the right way. The energy was good, the vibe was good, the music was good, the beat was great. When I first started the hook, it was so infectious, so contagious that I felt ‘Chris, you have to join this.’ This has to be one of them records we put out there, because it feels like me and you.

How did this record with Chris Brown compare to past ones like ‘FlEXiBle’ & ‘The Take’?

There’s a difference between when we’re having fun. With ‘The Take,’ that was a record from nostalgia and memorabilia. That was more incredible for what it was, we really remixed ‘Take You Down’ and brought it back in 2019. The difference between this record: this is the real feel of R&B. The hook plays a 16-bar hook instead of an 8-bar hook, that’s how real old school R&B records used to be. You can feel the record, you can feel the hook. You get the hook in your head. We tried to give it that classic feel.




I feel like every Chixtape you drop is so nostalgic. I could only imagine how lit you are creating the songs. 

[Laughs] I don’t do any drugs, number one. I smoke weed, but weed is an herb. Even with weed, I’ve never done a dab. I don’t go further than smoking the weed itself, because I don’t ever want to feel like I’m doing drugs. I’ve never taken a pill, never done coke, any of that stuff. In my eyes, and the way I see myself, I want to keep my temple and my body pure. I don’t be that lit in the studio, I’m naturally happy. I live my life to the fullest, naturally. That’s how I am, I’m a Leo. Excitement excites me, that’s what it is with me. As the type of person I am, doing 10,000 things a day, I find excitement in daily regular things, because my life and energy attracts that as well.

What type of weed do you like? 

I like all types of weed. I have a strain that’s about to come out called Black Leprechaun. It fits me perfect. It’s a dope brand. I always have hecklers that say ‘he’s like a little leprechaun!’ [leprechaun voice] It’s dope to take that and say ‘Well, let me make that something dope that can bring back more revenue.’ With that, OGs are good, Runtz, different Gelatos. I also have this Delta-8 line coming out.

Does Tory believe in true love?

I definitely believe in true love. I think sometimes we can mistake infatuation for love, but I definitely believe in true love, for sure.

I heard a story about how when you were in the 10th grade, the teacher called you and another girl to the front of the class and said you’re the example of what not to be. How did that make you feel?

She brought me to the front of the class and said, ‘Everybody meet Crystal and everybody meet Daystar. Everybody look, Crystal will one day be signing Daystar’s checks.’ I didn’t understand why she did that, but it prompted me to look at things in a different order and understand that it’s not school that’ll bring me to the place I want to be. Over a period of time, I realized the amount of education I had at that time was what I needed to do, what I wanted to do. Every other piece of knowledge I needed, I could acquire by reading a book, discovering that knowledge myself, or going to the library and educating myself. That moment was a very eye-opening moment. At the end of the day, it made me go harder. Cool, you think because this girl’s going to school that she’s going to automatically have a better future than me? It prompted me to want to make my outside future, my outside dream that nobody believed in, work.

At that age, did you think you’d be where you are now?

Yeah, I knew it always. There’s nothing that could stop that—that’s going to happen. With everything going on in life: at some point, it could be for a good seven months, I don’t care, there’s going to be a moment where the world recognizes my artistry.

What does that look like to you?

You ever seen that meme of DMX on the stage performing to the whole world? He’s performing to a million people, that’s how I feel. I’m going to stop wars with my music like how Bob Marley did. I’m going to do certain things that are so above and beyond other artists.

I remember your show at the Echoplex in Los Angeles where you were climbing and hanging from the roof?

Yes, at all of my shows. I’ve always crowdsurfed every show, climbed platforms. I treat the venue like a jungle gym.



DSQUARED2  pants..

DSQUARED2 pants..

With the COVID-19 pandemic, how much do you miss the stage? 

I miss the stage a lot. I miss the feeling of fans singing my music back to me, us making eye contact. Us having that moment of interaction where our souls are connecting through the music. I miss that, but at the same time, the safety of people is so important right now. With what’s going, it’s hard for artists to stay still. I do believe in doing what we have to do to make sure everyone is safe. As much as I miss it, it’s not about me, I can’t be selfish and not think about the health of everyone else.

I’d imagine you want to tour your R&B capsule. 

Of course, but it’s all good. I make music because I love it.

You’ve spoken about being homeless while growing up and living out of cars…

I’ve lived and slept in a lot of various places: cars, park benches, under slides, under bridges.

Were you able to sleep?

Yeah for sure, I can turn my light off any given time. [laughs] I can turn my light off right now and be knocked out. I can’t sleep longer than 4 hours though. Since that time, I’ve never ever been able to sleep longer than 4 hours. It doesn’t matter what time I go to sleep, I’ll be up 4 hours after. I’m up. If you ever pay attention to my Twitter, you look at the times I post, you realize I don’t ever really sleep.

Are you tired?

Nah, I just need a good solid 4 hours.

 You have a Reggae capsule coming out this summer. I know your heritage is Bajan. Talk about getting in touch with your Afro-Caribbean roots.

I’ve always been very island-oriented. My mom’s from Curaçao, which is Dutch, right outside of Guyana. All the rest of my family is Guyanese. My dad’s family is from Barbados, the same place Rihanna is from. What a lot of people don’t know is my grandfather is Garfield Sobers—he’s one of the best cricket players in the world. I come from a long line of greatness that stems from the islands. I’ve always wanted to make sure that, no matter what I do, I’m paying certain respects to my ancestors and ancestry. Showing certain love in reminding people where I come from. I’ll never forget where I come from.

Before I was even in the predicament of being homeless, I was in the Caribbean and West Indies. That’s the reason I always double back and show love. The people from the islands appreciate me and understand me the most. It’s a root thing, it’s a cultural thing. They deserve it all. The Reggae capsule is incredible. I mixed Reggae with a lot of Afrobeats. It’s Jamaican mixed with African vibe. I have all the dope artists.

I interview a ton of African artists, they’re such a vibe. 

I love everything from the East to the West side of Africa, everything that comes out of there. The music’s incredible. Me being so Jamaican-rooted and my music being Bajan-oriented, I wanted to connect and be diverse with the African culture of sound. The music that comes from Afrobeat and the culture that comes from it, together that’s a fusion that’s not to be fucked with.

Melii is my girl. Talk about the “Big Tipper” video with her and Lil Wayne. 

First and foremost, it’s incredible. The day after Wayne got pardoned, he came to my video and shot it for free. He’s a Libra, he’s had that way of looking at it: at the end of the day, I’ma keep my people where they… you know? To see him show Melii so much love, considering he signed the biggest female rapper in the world [Nicki Minaj], and for him to come Saturday, the day after the pardon, was incredible. For someone to be a veteran, be here for 15 years plus, and still be the GOAT, it was an honor and pleasure to have him. Honestly, Melii killed her verse. She killed us all on the track, that’s hard to admit. [laughs] She’s definitely a superstar, she’s on the rise. I’m excited about everything that’s happening with her, and I’m thankful for everything Wayne did.

PRADA  suit and shirt.

PRADA suit and shirt.

PRADA  suit and shirt.

PRADA suit and shirt.

How did you and Wayne meet?

I met Wayne on various occasions. It was a handshake, but he always kept it cordial. Once he got wind of my sound, he always showed me love. I’m a super Wayne fan. Coming up as a kid, I used to be in front of the mirror rapping the lyrics.

What’s your favorite Carter?

Carter II for sure, Carter II was serious. I’m a huge Wayne fan, so to see him show so much love, honestly makes me want to make sure that whenever I’m looked in that light, that I do the same for upcoming artists, people that might not be on the same level as I am at that moment. It takes a certain person with a certain heart to come back down: ‘aye look, I’ve got to do this, and I’ma do this for you. Help you get this opportunity, because I believe you can be big like me one day.’

How’s it feel to be independent?

It feels incredible. I’m free to do whatever I want. I’m not dictated by anybody else’s opinion of my art. I can move freely and live freely through my music and through my craft. I’m happy to be independent.

The last project you dropped with the label, The New Toronto 3, was incredible. How did that feel to get that reception?

It was good. I’ve always been happy about the fanbase that I have, because they’ve been so loyal. I’ve been in the game for about 10 years now, I got signed in 2011.

Was that originally the contract?

I was signed to Sean Kingston when I first came out. That was a three-year deal. After that, Interscope and vice versa. Now I’m independent, and I’ve had offers from everybody. It’s not about me taking the offer, it’s me setting an example for other artists to let them know there’s a possibility and a way you can do it by yourself.

Do you miss Canada at all?

I couldn’t say I miss it, because it’s always with me. I’m always with the same people, we’re all Canadian. My immediate friends and family are mostly all Canadian. I’m there a lot, even when people don’t know I’m there. I don’t always announce when I’m there. It’s always in my heart, I don’t have to miss it. It’s with me.

Talk about your rebellious nature when it comes to your music.

I want to defy the laws of music, that’s it. I want to take myself to different places and echelons, I want to do different things. The things that are the norm, I want to rebel against that. That’s the only time I could feel that way. Everything else about my music is very gray. It’s very simple-minded at the same time, but also very complex. I give people a little bit of half and half, that’s what makes people come back and listen to my music again.

Talk about your love for fashion too. What’s your fashion inspo? Bucket hat, Cuban links, bow tie…

I love being fly. I love looking in the mirror and being confident in the fit I’m wearing. I rate people’s outfits, we all do in our head. When it comes down to clothes, style and fashion, I style myself. I don’t really have a stylist. I’ve had people and stylists go out and buy clothes, but I’ve never had someone be like ‘these pants with this shirt and these shoes.’ I’ve been the person who is to have all of the clothes in front of me, I’m going to do the rest. I’m a Leo, we have different kinds of weird little fashion. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I’m not going to act like I’m the flyest person in the world, but I’m close to it.

What can we expect from this shoot? 

I’m more happy and thankful that I have a cover with Flaunt. That’s dope. No pun intended, it gives me something to flaunt about.

Anything else you want the people to know? 

I just made an alkaline water, it’s called Umbrella Water. It’s incredible water distributed through Artesia Springs. I’m about to go to Texas and deliver a bunch of water to people who don’t have it right now. There’s a shortage of water in a lot of places. We’re going to Shreveport, Louisiana. What prompted me to make the water was I couldn’t get companies that had water to come deliver, some weird thing with the transportation. I ended up finding a manufacturer in San Antonio, so we’re making water to go and do something good.

What inspires you to give back?

If there’s anything I love, it’s helping people. I come from situations where I feel like I wasn’t helped. If I had that assistance, it would’ve helped me be better. I always try to do my best. I live by a certain statement that says success is not the goal—it’s the platform in which we help people in situations that are more unfortunate than the situation you’re in. I move and live by that. I try my best with whatever I have, I try to help people.

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