Tell us who you are. Who is OL? Give us your backstory and how you got into rap.

“’OL’ is a rapper & sound engineer residing in Portland, Oregon. I first began recording music at the age of 12 in my uncle’s home studio. Following a murder case involving my father, I stopped making music and it wasn’t until the age of 17 that my homies Magic and Locces inspired me to start writing again. Then, in my early 20’s, a string of criminal indictments along with hard drugs caused me to lose most of my loved ones. Since, I have opened for over two dozen national acts, performed in five states and released one EP project. If you were to ask me my biggest inspiration I would say “PAIN”.”

That’s quite a lot to take in at once. I’m sorry to hear about all the negativity that has happened in your life, but I’m sure it has pushed you to become who you are today. Compared to the other artists I tend to interview or do track reviews on, you’re a bit different. What genre of rap would you classify yourself under? And what do you think makes you different or unique compared to the other musicians in the same style of rap?

“All of that pain made me the artist I am today. So I’m grateful for the blessings I have. I don’t like to classify myself but if I were to do that then I’d say I make experimental hip hop. Meaning that I’m willing to push the limit and go beyond when it comes to my music. I’m experimenting with art and writing from the heart. I believe my music is alternative compared to the mainstream media. What makes me unique is that I’m in my own lane and always have been. I never try to portray a specific image or fit myself into a category. I’mma diagnosed schizophrenic and my music is my insanity bread into art.”

That’s really detailed and I love how you view your own work. I know we’ve only met once or twice in Portland, but you seem like a very genuine guy, and I’ve personally seen you help other artists, whether that be by selling time to record at your place, or collabing with others to help them get publicity. What makes you so helpful to other artists? Is it because you remember starting out as a new artist and want to help those in the position you once were in?

“When I started doing shows two years ago, barely anyone helped me. I was paying outrageous prices for studio time and investing money into the wrong places. I made a lot of errors and learned from my mistakes. The only reason I started making moves is because a few people gave me hand ups, not hand outs. Which means they pulled me into position and challenged me with the work. I remember that feeling when someone finally believed in me and hard work was paying off, it was rewarding. I promised myself that I would always share knowledge and give blessings to the right people. If an artist works at least as hard as I do then they deserve the same opportunities. I intend to continue this belief on my path to success.”

That’s very generous and I’m sure the artists that you have helped really appreciate the help. Speaking on your path of success, it’s no secret you’re doing very well for yourself. I’ve seen your recent post on the list of shows you have planned. Which show are you most excited for? Or, which show do you think will get you the best push for your career?

“I’m excited for all the shows. I’m excited for the run of C Dubb shows because it’s that real street music, which is what I was raised on. Plus I got love for Bloc Star ENT and the whole movement they got going on. I’m excited for my back to school event because I’m going to raise money for kids and I’m excited for the Afroman tour because I’ve listened to his music since middle school and now I’m gonna be sharing the same stage as him. It’s a blessing. I think the best push of my career will be this tour with AFROMAN because I smoke weed like it’s my religion and I know real stoners feel me.”

I love the energy brother. You have such a positive outlook on the scene and the other artists here locally and it feels so good to have around. Seeing how far you have come, which project of yours do you think helped the most when trying to get your name in the open?

“My original stage name was Kris White and I dropped a mixtape two years ago called ADHD Flow. That project alone allowed me to do over 40 shows in five states and I sold around 500 copies doing so. That was the first real push. Now my first official EP OLKRIS is out now under my new name and I’m pushing it the same.”

I love your dedication to the music scene. Moving to the last question, is there any upcoming projects you can tell us about a little early?

“I currently have a joint EP coming out with Goofy With The K. It will be available on the Afroman tour. 

I also have a joint EP coming out with Locces Da G60N aka Bad Influence called ‘2 more than 98‘ coming out in October. Lastly, I got a solo EP coming out in November called ‘MOON WALK‘. Also, quick shoutout to Philip Stengel, Chillest ENT, Goofy With The K, Studio 23, Nine Side Graphic Design and Locces Da G60N.”

Thank you for taking the time to tell us a little about you. Be sure to check out OL on all streaming platforms excluding SoundCloud.