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Drake Reflects on OVO Fest, The Weeknd and Toronto

Posted by XO in News

In a recent interview with Toronto’s “NOW Toronto”, Drake revealed his thoughts on OVO Fest over the past three years, Toronto and his relationship with The Weeknd. Drake also got a new “416” tattoo (Toronto’s local area code). I have included some excerpts from the interview below.

  • “When I think of myself, I think of Toronto. My music would never sound the way it does if it weren’t for Toronto,” he says. “You talk about certain artists, and they sound like where they’re from. Myself and the Weeknd, we both just sound like Toronto.”
  • Our town has never really been known for that particular kind of hip-hop civic pride. Drake started OVO Fest in part to help shift how we see ourselves as a city. “I just wanted to create a special night for the city. When I grew up, I always used to hear how we never get anything good coming through Toronto. “We actually do get some great things in Toronto compared to many other places, but it’s true that sometimes you might not see your favourite hip-hop artist for a full year, or even two. Sometimes we do get skipped over here.”
  • “I don’t want people to just come for the surprise guests, but at the same time I do put in a lot of effort and take a lot of pride in the friends that I can call up to travel to our city. I don’t really call on too many people for favours, but for this one night I do.”
  • It’s no surprise that he’s booking reclusive local R&B sensation the Weeknd to play OVO Fest for the second year running. Drake helped initially expose the singer to the world by posting an early recording on his own blog, and has since developed a close relationship with the emerging artist. … “Surface R&B doesn’t work any more,” says Drake. “The whole heartthrob thing, songs about unrealistic love and tearing your shirt off every show – that’s not really where it’s at any more. It’s becoming harder for those guys to sell records, and harder for them to succeed.
  • “I could do a whole separate interview about how talented [the Weeknd] is and what he means to the city. I’m so proud of him. He’s going to come out and prove how far he’s come in a year and how much he’s evolved as a performer.”

For a full read of Benjamin Boles’ (@BenjaminBoles) interview with Drake, visit NOW Toronto. A great article which I personally recommend.

READ: Cover Story
READ: Sidebar (Featuring The Weeknd)