Photo by: Jessica Bernstein
Envision is a transformational festival that takes places just steps away from the beautiful beach in Costa Rica. It is a festival of connection, empowerment, and celebration. One of my favorite experiences came in the form of meeting a kind, humble, and passionate musician. Troy Henry, aka TroyBoi, sat down with Festival Squad before his set at Envision Sunday night.
Upon entering the green room my nerves started to fade, Troy greeted me with a warm smile like we were friends sitting down to chat. From what I learned he’s just a regular guy who grew up in South London playing video games and swimming. He says his favorite food is that of his moms who makes delicious fusion cuisine. A music lover from a young age, inspired by the sounds of Michael Jackson and Pharrell he began to start making tunes around 13. He played the drums, knew a little piano and violin, but was mostly keen to producing electronic music.
As he began a career in Real Estate, making music remained a passion for him. Then at 25, he was at a crossroads, on one hand, he was positioned to start his own business in real estate, on the other hand, he could take a leap of faith and choose to produce music full time.
Luckily for us, he chose the latter.
Image from TroyBoi’s Facebook
Festival Squad: You released one of your first songs back in 2014 and now you have almost half a million fans on Soundcloud. How did you take that leap?
TroyBoi: It was super scary as you can imagine. The moment I released my first song and I saw the reactions first hand. You see SoundCloud at the time was the spot to put new music. Everyone was super active. So the first time I put a song out, it sort of caught on like wildfire. I read comments like “What the hell is this” “This is crazy” or whatever it was. I was like “Ok I need to continue, there is something here”. As I kept on doing it and I started to see the fans organically grow. I knew this is exactly it, I made the right decision. Music has always been a passion for me so to be able to do that and get that response. I knew I was doing the right thing.
Now just a short few years later, he is performing all over the globe. He cites some of his favorite performances as being at Electric Forest in Michigan and at a small festival in Milan, Italy. Earlier this month he was in India, then to San Francisco for Wobbleland, and now in Costa Rica for Envision Festival.
FS: Have you ever performed in Central America before? What has your prep been like for this festival?
TroyBoi: No, this is really incredible. I have never performed in Central America before. That’s why when I got invited to perform here I jumped at the opportunity. I had one or two friends that had come, I had heard good things. I know that we’re in a place where it’s very vibey and I am all about creating vibes so that’s what I intend to do tonight. I feel like this is the perfect backdrop to play my music. I think I am really going to use it to my advantage.
FS: How do you keep yourself going with this busy schedule?
TroyBoi:The motivation of people wanting to come see me in all this various countries and cities is food for me to go. I always want to go where my fans are. I am never tired for them. I always going to give my all to them, gladly.
From the way that he interacted with the fans at the festival you could tell they are what truly drives him. Walking around the grounds he stopped to chat with whoever came up to him, even bending down so he could hear them better (he is seriously tall!) and took pictures when asked. Envision is a festival all about connection and community, but also about encouraging people to embrace who they are. That is one thing TroyBoi has focused on as well. His incredible 20 song album “Left is Right” is themed around carving his own lane and embracing his own unique sound.
FS: How have you kept yourself grounded and focused on your own sound in this industry?
TroyBoi: I always stay focused on that because when you listen on the radio you still hear a lot of the same stuff. You hear it all the time. It’s like come on, please man can you make something a bit different. I just love the fact that I am able to do what I want to do and be able to stand out in a market where there is a lot of the same music.
FS: Is there any advice you can give to other artists that want to carve their own lane?
TroyBoi: As long as you stay consistent. Consistency is key. If you have got your own sound stick with it, show that it’s your own sound. The right people or even just people will catch on to it. It won’t be seen as forced or fake because it’s really coming from you.
FS: Whenever you get stuck on creating music or get a mental block, how do you relax?
TroyBoi: I’m usually in Miami and I have been blessed with a nice balcony that has a great view. So a lot of the times I go out on my balcony and just chill and watch. I let my mind go empty and a lot of the times that emptiness will allow me to absorb and be able to make music. That’s always good. Sometimes I go to the gym to de-stress. But honestly, when it comes time for me to make music I just kind of dive straight in.
Even though he has come out with a massive album just last year, he is not stopping to make new music anytime soon. He gave us a little preview of what’s to come.
FS: I read that you and Ice-Kream are working on something together again on SoundSnobs. What can we expect from that? Are you currently working on any other projects?
TroyBoi: Absolutely. So we have been cooking a lot of new music up over the past couple months. We’re actually producing some tracks for some artists out of Miami. One specifically called Eric Leon so check that out, that’s going to be coming out soon. On top of that we are going to be putting out an album together and few other EPs. Going to be a lot of new music coming out.
FS: What kind of sound can we expect from that?
Troyboi: What we usually do, whatever we feel like, eclectic. Just as long as it’s good fun music that makes you dance.
FS: You’ve already had some massive collaborations with artists like Diplo and Ice Cube, is there anyone else out there you would want to collaborate with?
TroyBoi: There loads of them. There are so many artists, singers, producers, and rappers. I would love to collaborate with Pharrell Williams or any N*E*R*D* because I’ve listened to their music for a really long time and they’ve been huge inspirations. I am willing to work with anyone and everybody. I just want to make good music.
From my brief time with him, he gave off the vibe of a passionate but grounded musician. You can tell he also values family, at points during our chat he discussed his mothers amazing cooking and even took some time out to video chat his sister later in the evening. We ended our interview with some questions outside of music.
FS: I read that you are a pretty talented gamer, especially in Street Fighter. Do you still find time to play? Do you have any other hobbies outside of music?
TroyBoi: Sometimes when I have literally nothing to do and I just want to de-stress I will still play a little Street Fighter but there was a time when I was playing, in my younger years, and I was the 60th best player in Europe which was pretty crazy. I still got my fingers in me still. (It’s like riding a bicycle?) Yeah, it’s still there. Anyone that wants to challenge, I’m down! (Be careful if I write that down you might get some messages) Aw stop! No do it.
I like to swim when I can. I used to be a keen swimmer when I was younger. When I was in school I was the top swimmer in 100m, 200m, and relay five years in a row. That’s a little fact for ya!
FS: So you pretty much chose music over the Olympics, right?
TroyBoi: Yeah I could have but I thought nah, there’s much more variety in music.
FS: Pineapple on pizza, yes or no?
TroyBoi: I could do it but I wouldn’t choose it. I am a meat eater. So I would want every kind of meat possible. That’s my shit.