Rapper Danny Boy differs from most high school seniors thinking of prom or their senior trip. Instead Danny’s planning mixtape release dates, song titles and studio sessions. Currently, you can listen to “First Semester” to get familiar with his raps and expect another mixtape titled “Spring Break” on its way.
Danny, born in Chicago, moved to Brooklyn when he was 12 after his parents divorced. In 2009 he settled down in Atlanta, Georgia where he continues to record and create music today. When it comes to developing his rap delivery, Danny’s father introduced him to classic lyricists that got him interested in perfecting his craft.
“My pops always made me listen to Big L, Mobb Deep, and got me off bubble gum rapping and got me into reading the dictionary and thesaurus,” he told TheUrbanDaily.com. “It’s not all about girls, money, cars and jewelry but about bringing real content.”
For one of his freestyles Danny raps over Mac Miller’s “Don Trump” to create his own perspective titled “Economics” which truly exemplifies Danny’s ability to deliver substance with his music. “Funny how the table turn quickly/we got money for war but we can’t help the sickly/We can waste millions on the oil spill/but I can’t feed my fam with the check from a deal, huh?”
However, this does not mean Danny wants to be considered a conscious rapper.
“I don’t like titles or being limited to a style of rap, I just want to speak whatever I feel whether that’s about Jordan’s or a war going on I wanna be able to talk about it. It’s whatever I do research on because I do a lot of research before I talk.”
TheUrbandaily caught up with the young phenom to learn more about his motivations, influences and next moves.
TUD: When did you start rapping?
Danny Boy: I started rapping When I was seven, I was in the studio in Chicago and I was listening to someone on H.E.A.T records and while they were recording they gave me a notepad so that I didn’t bother anyone. My rap name back then was Lil’ D and I remember talking about Rush Hour the movie and Michael Jackson, it was dope. But when I was in Brooklyn and I freestyled in school during lunch and everyone thought it was hot, that’s when I realized that I could really persue this. These two experiences really helped me to pinpoint when and where I started rapping.
What’s the meaning behind your name?
I had a lot of rap names that came and when but in my neighborhood growing up I was called Danny Boy. I was named after uncle Daniel and everyone would call me Danny and then I was called “Danny Boy.” It’s traveled with me and I like it.
When did you know you had talent?
I was sitting on a stoop and rapping aloud with friends and suddenly I was being given change, I mean actual money. In that moment, I figured they were giving me money because people thought I was cute, a nice rapper, or they did it because they felt bad for me.After that stoop session I went ahead and recorded a remix to Drake’s “Best I Ever Had” and all the girls loved it, which motivated me to hone my talent as well.
When was your “Big Break?”
My first big break came with the release of my first mixtape “Dano The Great,” it had 21-tracks and I had a hard grind to complete that tape. There were major sacrifices. I gave up getting new clothes or new Jordans and saved up money with my mother to by recording equipment and Protools and learned to record and mix the music myself. “Dano The Great” was about taking Danny seriously in rap and with it the fans came. I even got a few labels that contacted me because of that mixtape.
What is your favorite stage performance so far?
My first bill was at an Open Mic competition in Atlanta. I came in with my mother and friend and I didn’t know many people in there. When I performed and people began to sing with me I felt free. I won that night too and this happened right as I hit the one-year mark living in Atl and it was the best.
What is your hidden talent?
Dancing. I mainly do hip-hop and freestyle dancing. When the ‘jerkin’’ dance came out I was the king of that dance and would battle my friends at school. But I think it’s time to show people I can dance, I will bring that back out.
Who is your rap inspiration?
Fabulous mainly but, I give it to everyone who had grind to make it in music inspire me. Artists like Warren G, KRS One, Kanye, Meek Mill, Slick Rick and so many more inspire me to rap and keep rapping.