Watch Terrell Morris bring his genre-bending hip hop to The Intro
The Toronto rapper’s soulful hip hop blends inspiration from the past with innovative production
"I like to consider myself a writer first and a musician second," said Toronto artist Terrell Morris, the latest guest on CBC Music's The Intro. "It's kind of therapeutic to put pen to paper."
Morris is a songwriter, poet, singer, rapper and bass player whose soulful hip hop is introspective, inquisitive and irreverent.
He drops bars about the need for kinship between Black men over hazy guitars and spaced-out production on "Fortified," a single off his upcoming EP, Curb. "Got the Love," from his 2020 album, Lavender, is a groovy, high-energy number, where he raps about hitting the town with a girl, swearing that only he knows how to her please just right. "Peace," an unreleased track that Morris premiered on the show, has a little neo-soul, a touch of vapourwave and all the yearning a love song needs.
When asked about this current moment in Toronto hip hop, Morris mentioned that there's "a good spread of people enjoying genre-bending characteristics in their music." Artists aren't pigeonholed by one distinct sound, and he lists Clairmont the Second and former Intro guest Boyfrn as musicians carving their own way.
Although Morris is helping push the sound forward in his own right, he also has ties to the past. In the episode, he reveals that he has close connections to some Canadian hip-hop legends and was raised amongst the burgeoning '90s scene in Toronto, spending time on the video sets of his stepfather's rap duo. "It's interesting to look back and see all the history I was just behind the scenes of."
Watch the video above to immerse yourself in the world of Morris's genre-bending hip hop on the latest episode of The Intro.
CBC Music's The Intro spotlights emerging musicians across the country through interviews and live performances, and airs on CBC Gem, YouTube and CBCMusic.ca/TheIntro. Keep an eye out for new episodes every second Tuesday.