Gig Seeker Pro


Band Hip Hop Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



""Black History Month 2010" featured on HipHopGame.Com!"


- http://www.hiphopgame.com

"T-West article in Metro Newspaper"



The Harbourfront Centre’s 14th Kuumba Festival is the centrepiece of Toronto’s Black History Month celebrations, with a proactive vision of the future to celebrate. Among the festivities, musical events weave traditional black styles from around the world and modern, constructive rhymes.

“The Kuumba Festival tries to cover the black community in its entirety,” explains CEP Programmer Dalton Higgins. “Our programs work because they connect generations. We’ll get a musical icon and pair them up with new artists. Also, the line up’s very diverse. The black community is not a homogenous group — there are Africans, Caribbean Blacks, indigenous Canadians, Afro-Americans, and so on. Our mission is to connect the diasporas in a positive way.”

That positive connection is exemplified by Harbourfront’s Urban X-Posure: SoWhatChuSayin?
“Urban Exposure is the brain child of me and (UMAC President) Will Strickland, to promote conscious rap,” says Higgins. “When you turn on the commercial radio, you’re only hearing one slice of hip hop culture: violence, crime and misogyny. But what we want is people talking about community and exploring the real breadth of human experience.”

Though there are lots of thoughtful rap artists working today (KRS 1, The Cool Kids) it’s still tough for less bloody-minded rappers to be heard.

“Not everybody’s role model should be a rapper or an athlete or a drug dealer,” says Hogtown’s own, Tristan “T-West” West. “There are community heroes too, like (Toronto educator) Christopher Spence, to talk about. Kuumba lets us say things the record industry doesn’t.

“This festival’s definitely necessary,” adds West. “Even just for the venues. Most black events are hosted too far north. The Harbourfront Centre’s right downtown. Nobody has an excuse to not come.”

West represents Kuumba’s Black to the Future/One Love theme, running Feb 13-14. This weekend’s theme is Old School/Power of Soul, as exemplified by Toronto’s funk soul diva, Saidah Baba Talibah.

“This weekend’s about the connective tissue between past and present,” says Talibah.

“That’s what I grew up with. My mom (jazz/blues vocalist Salome Bey) performed live while pregnant with me. I grew up listening to hip hop and pop, but I also loved the music of my family.” - Metro Toronto

"T-West - www.cityonmyback.com"

http://www.cityonmyback.com/2009/10/20/new-music-t-west-feat-drake-forever-apok-el3ktr0house-remix/ - City On My Back

"T-West - "The Development" Review"

The Development Mixtape
By Thomas Quinlan

That Kid West is still a youth at 18, but he’s building a buzz out of his block in Jungle City to become one of the hottest MCs in Toronto currently on the come up. Doing double duty as a rapper and producer, T-West uses The Development Mixtape to focus on his growth and evolution as an MC, putting his production talents to use on only three of the 14 songs included here. His production fits nicely within the mix of radio-ready music, but it’s first single “My Home,” where West teams with JD Era to give much love to their T-Dot home, that really stands out on the album. Hopefully this song is a sign of what’s to come with his sophomore album in early 2007. However, it’s as a rapper that T-West stands out and really shines. A street rapper with an easily accessible vocal style, West just happens to be a rapper that hustles good. From the get-go, West is not afraid to question and confront stereotypes, whether he’s putting his spin on topics like clothes (“Sneakers And Fitteds” and “Doorags”), money (“Cake”) or the authorities’ abuse of power (“Here’s A Story”), the latter also demonstrating a knack for solid storytelling and stands out as another of the mix’s highlights. Best of all, as T-West demonstrates on the title track, he knows this is just one more step in his development as a world class rapper. In other words, The Development Mixtape is a great introduction to someone whose name will be heard a lot more in the near future. (Independent) - Exclaim! Magazine

"T-West Interview - Stolen From Africa"

http://www.cityonmyback.com/2010/02/18/interview-t-west-hhcsfa-tv/ - Stolen From Africa/HipHopCanada.com TV

"T-West - Hiphopcanada.com Interview"

Toronto, ON - Coming from Jungle City Projects in Toronto, T-West feels he has been destined to do his thing as a hip-hop artist. Starting at a young age, he picked up the pen to write and saw it as a means to be heard. Described as "Worthwhile", T-West has proven to step away from an idealistic style, break free, and be an individual. Sitting down with T-West, I must say was refreshing, and too comfortable. He was not only anxious to get across his ideas, but had a meaning behind everything he said. Already having released his second mixtape The Development (Out Now!), he is already in the studio working on his follow up: Even More Developed. He then plans on pushing out his album and DVD and has a few other projects working on. T-West shows no signs of cracking under the pressure and is ready to take on the world. Is the world ready for him? Keep reading to find out about the aspirations of this young cat…

T-WestHHC: So what's going on with T-West right now?
We just released The Development Mixtape which is doing really well (Open YouTube Video HERE), we're releasing my Even More Developed Mixtape later this year, and then we have my Album and DVD Birth Of The Future coming out around 2nd quarter of 2007.

HHC: What was your first break as a hip-hop artist?
When I first started rapping, I honestly didn't believe that I would gain any form of success from it. I really just did it because it was fun, and it made getting girls in high school much easier. Then, as I kept doing it, people started to take notice, and actually started becoming supporters. Eventually, I got asked to start doing shows, interviews, and everything else.

HHC: Who would you say your inspirations are?
If you're talking about hip-hop music inspirations, I would have to say someone like Nas. The Nas that made songs like "2nd Childhood", "One Love", and "I Gave You Power". He's my favourite rapper. I respect him (Nas) a lot for his story-telling abilities and his way to craft lyrics. If you were asking about daily motivation, I would say the people around me keep me going, all the fans, and my family, everybody that's contributed to my project.

HHC: What kind of style would you categorize your sound as?
I'd categorize my sound as "worthwhile" because honestly, I think a lot of music nowadays isn't worth the time that people spend to listen to it. It's either people are just rushing to put out sub-par material as fast as they can, or they simply lack talent. Whether I'm expressing my deepest regrets or my experiences with girls, I do my best to make sure that the listener is satisfied after hearing my music.

HHC: Growing up in Toronto, how has your surroundings influenced your music?
My main influence is the area where I come from "Jungle City" (West end Toronto). As I was growing up in Jungle, I found it easier to convey my emotions through my music. Now I'm older, and I control my own destiny. At 8 years old, you start getting exposed to a lot of things many kids in the projects see on a regular basis. I personally am not mainly focusing on drugs, guns and other things along those lines, but rather on the ideas of lost hope. A lot of people in the projects simply accept their lifestyle. They've grown accustomed to it, and are satisfied. Don't put me on record as saying "Living on the block means your less of a person", but if you, the leader of a family, show no inspiration or dedication towards moving on to the next step, what is the 10-year old in that house going to think about committing himself towards leaving the block? These are the types of things that can really shape the way a person comes out, for the best or for the worst. I have now grown past all of that. I will be going to college really soon. I have started from scratch, came from nothing and I am rising to the ranks of something in society. I apply all of this to my music. I know what that pain of going to bed hungry for days feels like, and I know what that joy of getting accepted into something like college feels like.

HHC: So are you trying to be that "voice" from that area then?
I don't consider myself as the one voice from this area, because there are many people who are just like me and have a story to tell. There are people who have had it even worse than me. I just like to make people keep their options open. I know there are plenty of kids who think it's a given fact that they'll never get off of the block, when really, they can. Perhaps their situation on the block is worse than mine, but don't let that hold you back. A bigger man showed me best when he was talking about girls "No matter how you look, and how she looks, you take what you want". That's how we have to look at life; get what you want, but just do it in an acceptable way. Through my actions and accomplishments, hopefully I can inspire a different way of thinking than what is present where I live right now. The potential definitely lies around here; people just need to start using it.

HHC: I was reading in your biography and noticed that you do some producing? Do you see that in your future?
I'll always be a rapper before a producer... point blank. That's me. I got into producing because I needed beats for my songs and a lot of producers were charging a lot for beats that I thought weren't really worth it. I felt like I could do better. If someone jacked the sample from Juelz Santana's "Who Am I", added shitty drums, bass that's off key and mixed the beat too loud, then asked me to pay 5 bills for it, I get confused. I don't know whether to laugh, or feel sorry for them.

HHC: [Laughing] So are any tracks on your album or on your mixtape produced by yourself?
I produce a lot of my tracks. The promo single for my album, called "My Home" with JD Era, was produced by me. My single for The Development Mixtape ("The Development"), I produced myself as well. There's a track on The Development Mixtape called "Invincible" which I produced myself too. I produced like 11 out of 15 tracks on my first mixtape Crackle Of Light back in 2005. A lot of the T-West tracks that are out in the public, I produced myself.


HHC: Talking about JD Era, how was working with him?
Hooking up with JD Era was definitely a great experience for me. All of the time now, People are coming at me asking me to rap with Era on their beat. If everyone wants to re-create that same vibe, it must have been something special. JD Era heard me on Project Bounce one night, and I was ciphering with these other two guys. The next day I got a message from him telling me he liked what he heard and to get at him. Initially the track "My Home" was supposed to be between me and two other artists, which didn't work out. I asked Era if he wanted one of the verses. He did it, Jon from SoundResolve mixed it down, and the rest is history.

HHC: You've been receiving great reviews for The Development Mixtape, is there an album release date?
For the album, we are looking at releasing it the second quarter of 2007.

HHC: Are there any other artist features on the album?
The album is kind of a hush project right now, so I don't want to talk too much about it.

T-WestHHC: Can't you give us some scoop?
Ok, Ok. All I am saying is Michie Mee. I am not saying she's on it, or she's not on it, I'm just dropping her name. That's all. And, for the DVD, I may sit down and take the role of editing the entire thing. Or at least co-produce it. Many people don't know that among my titles (Rapper, Producer, Writer, Radio Personality, Artist, Ladies Man, etc.) Film Maker lies in there somewhere. I actually edited the footage that was used for The Development Mixtape promotional video.

HHC: Are you going to be doing any touring? Any local shows or any concert bills that you will be featured on?
Yes, most definitely. That will all come with time, and the more we get into the project, the more those things will be highlighted. A promotional tour is a must, and definitely look out for me to do something around the time of the release of my album. On October 8th I was at Club 108 for their 4th Year Anniversary Platinum Party. I performed at the DipSet Show a few weeks back at NRG Kingdom, and, I'll probably do a lot more shows around the All Ages circuit too. Right now though, we'd rather put more emphasis on the musical aspect of the album, because that's always going to be the most important point. I have to focus on the music.

HHC: If you could do any collaboration with any artist who would it be?
Wow that's a hard question…but if I could collaborate if with anyone right now, I'd like for it to be a reggae group by the name of Morgan Heritage. For the reggae lovers out there, "How Come" on the Seasons Riddim has been out for a good while, and it still gets rotation when I play music. They have a great sound, and very captivating melodies. I'm a big fan of their music. Gyptian is another one too. As you can see, I'm a big fan of conscious reggae.

HHC: Where do you see T-West about 3 years from now?
Definitely in a much better position that I am in now. I see myself in a very strong position. Every year we keep going harder, every year we keep going further and it's not going to stop. If you don't like me now, you're going to be a very depressed person 3 years from now.

Editor's Note: For more information on T-West check out http://www.myspace.com/thisiswest - www.hiphopcanada.com

"Heads Connect Compilation Review"

Toronto’s Rhythmicru and Montreal’s ICM Records celebrate the continued success of their shared dual-city hip-hop night with this compilation of songs from the best heads to have connected at “Heads Connect.” This means most contributors are from Montreal and Toronto, or the surrounding area. They also all share a common desire to present a view of hip-hop true to themselves, which usually results in a nicely varied selection of sounds, subjects and songs. While Rhythmicru rap about rap (“Hip Hop Head,” “Never Had a Choice” and “Drop It”), Island City Monsters rap about themselves (“Help!”), T-West raps about Toronto (“T-Dot State of Mind”), the Dope Poet Society rap about politics (“Devils in Your Government”), Vandal raps about history (“Mongolia”), David Hodges does irony (“Online Radio Star”) and so on and so forth until the record concludes with the psychedelic turntablist track “Laughing Life” from iNSIDEaMiND. Heads Connect: Vol One has a little something for everyone and anyone. Plus, a few of these artists are bound to become trailblazers of Canadian hip-hop, guaranteed. So why wait? (ICM) - Exclaim! Magazine


"Even More Developed" Mixtape - 2007
"Maybe It's Okay" EP - May 2010

"T-Dot State Of Mind"
- 55,000 Youtube plays (As of FEB 10')
- #3 on Flow 93.5 "Megacity Countdown"





Conceiving a unique voice in the monotony of the rap scene is difficult to do, but hearing one word from this young man's mouth proves that he broke the fabricated mold.

The young individual, born Tristen West, grew up as a tenant situated in the ominous Metro Housing projects of Toronto known as Jungle City. One might think that burgeoning under a condition like that would alter a person's mentality emphatically. And it certainly did. West described that being brought up in that kind of situation developed him for the good. "I guess growing up in that lifestyle allows you to establish certain traits you probably wouldn't have if you were rich." And he definitely flaunts his developed trait of appreciation when his performances receive love.

His resume boasts such locations as: Rogers Centre (Importfest 2005), Yonge/Dundas Square, Nathan Phillips Square, Much Music, + MORE! And he's opened for such acts as: Drake, The Diplomats, + MORE!

Having a style that is very easy to relate to, but also extremely unique and diverse, it seems like no obstacle is big enough, nor strong enough to stop this kid.