Zane Smith – Mr. Roy G. Biv @ZaneSmithMusic
Lithonia, Georgia rapper Zane Smith has released sixth studio album “Mr. Roy G. Biv” on June 24, 2020. Titled with a new alias, Zane Smith is now Mr. Roy Biv due to his background in graphic design. Previous albums “(SWATCHES, black, and gray) have also been named after colors, each used to describe and portray different moods.
With this album, Zane Smith creates a sound like never before working with various producers. The cover features nine colors, representing the nine songs on the album. Each song is associated to a different color and mood. This collection of tracks is an emotional roller coaster of sounds, subjects and lyrics showcasing Zane’s versatility.
Each of he the songs was released one at a time whether one month or three months apart. “I had always just released album, whole projects at once. This time I had the album, but I released one song at a time so that I could build my audience and give listeners a chance to enjoy and understand the track before moving on to discover more. It had worked. There are more listeners now and the Smith Family is growing EVERY DAY.”
Born 1994, Philip “Zane Smith” Mincey is a hip-hop/rap artist from South DeKalb County, Lithonia (Stonecrest), Georgia, just east of Atlanta. The media arts graduate used his background in technical writing, graphic design, photography, video production and more to produce his own content and create the “Zane Smith” identity.
“Zane Smith,” is literally the name his parents did not choose, deciding between “Philip” (with one ‘L’ like the Bible) and “Zane.” This name is combined with his mother’s maiden name “Smith,” a common name due to slavery. Just as Zane translates to “John,” the name Zane Smith is the equivalent of John Smith, or John Doe, the everyday (hu)man.
Under a common name, Zane creates music for the everyday person. Zane’s music is poetic, honest, inspirational, mellow or hype.
In 2014, while in college for New Media Arts(visual communication), Philip made the decision to rap. Once the decision was made, he started writing songs. Formerly a sneaker cleaner, collector, and YouTube creator, Philip sold shoes and clothes from his personal collection and business inventory to purchase equipment so he could create music. Speakers, a microphone, one-by-one, he got the pieces needed to get the job done. As time passed, Philip spent time writing songs, producing beats, and practicing the art he loves so much. Zane Smith’s first official song release was titled “Twenty-One,” releasing on June 24, 2015 via music video.
Twenty-one was an anti-drug song. “Funny thing was I thought this song was profound, poetic, thought my first song would make me an overnight success. Real funny. I said I have to work on a song. Make this song. Release it. Regardless of money. Regardless of quality. This was me saying I can and I will be a rap artist. You have to take a step. After taking the step to make the decision to rap, making the decision to buy equipment, etc., this was next, so I put it out.” Six months after graduation, Philip “Zane Smith” Mincey released his first album “SWATCHES.”
On June 24, 2016, Zane Smith released “SWATCHES.” This debut album was a narration of the collegiate experience through his eyes. Education, people, society, destiny, and faith were covered though his audio narrative. Just six months later, Zane Smith returned releasing the “black” album December 24, 2016. The seven track album revealed his innermost thoughts during a period of depression. Compared to Zane Smith’s debut album, “black” had twice as many streams and three times as many downloads within one week. Zane promoted the “black” album by filming and editing seven music videos for all seven songs, creating a video album.
His first mixtape “Poetic Justice” released on April Fool’s 2017. This mixtape was an audio narrative, a story about a radio host helping a rapper be heard among many bad artists, providing justice to true poets. Zane spit his best verses from his first two albums “SWATCHES” and “black” over beats from various hip-hop artists and producers. Uploading video freestyles every week was an attempt to gain an audience and build viewer loyalty, while promoting his third album, “Rebel” released June 24, 2017.
The album “REBEL” described a natural inability to blend. Listener’s hear both Zane’s joy and pain as he expresses his life experiences since his last album “black.” Faith, religion, finances, work, and even race are discussed in this rebellious hip-hop/rap album. The mold of rapping about sex, money, drugs, and the lies that many artists tell is broken by Zane Smith. Instead, his brutally honest music is about everyday living. That is why he is a REBEL.
Just three months later, Zane Smith returned with his fourth independent album titled “gray.” Released on October 24, 2017, “gray” continued where “black” left off. For the first time, Zane released an album over beats he did not produce. The album was composed of nine tracks, one classic instrumental and eight original instrumentals from various producers worldwide. “Each song had it’s own story; each beat was found a different way.” Towards the end of 2017, Philip applied to an internship at a local recording studio after the flyer was sent to him by a friend.
Early 2018, Philip “Zane Smith” Mincey worked as a Graphic Design/Marketing intern at the famous Patchwerk Recording Studios in Atlanta, GA. On June 24, 2018, while interning, Zane Smith released his fifth independent album titled “Life Sucks,” working on single “Simple Life” at Patchwerk. Reflecting on past albums, from subject to style, Philip no longer wished to move in circles, choosing to look forward, never back, thinking positive and progressing only. After working the entire committed term and completing all assignments, Philip left the internship to continue making music, his true passion.
Taking knowledge from his internship days, Zane Smith approached the idea of releasing singles, since he already had five completed albums, a body of work that represented previous points in life. On September 14, 2018, the Metro Atlanta rapper released hit single “It’s Cool.” Just two days before, Philip quit his job as a Ride Attendant at Zoo Atlanta to pursue rap full-time. There was no other option but to have music work out for Philip “Zane Smith” Mincey. His promotion strategies and drive was put into effect like never before.
From networking at music events in the city, promoting on college campuses and concerts, impacting people via web(social media, etc.), people began to connect, notice, spread the word, and remember Zane Smith. The awareness and fan-base of Zane Smith’s music increased. Since the song “It’s Cool” was about a failed relationship, and it was a single song, Philip came up with the idea of creating a web-series titled “Single.” The web-series aimed to document and tell his story, showing the process of creating, releasing and promoting a song.
The docu-series originally created for YouTube was broadcasted on local television channel DeKalb25 in DeKalb County, Georgia where Philip “Zane Smith” Mincey grew up. The twelve episode series released every Friday for twelve weeks leading up to the release of Zane Smith’s second single “Tippin.”
After six years of hard work, sacrifices, time, blood, sweat, tears, money and more, Zane Smith began to see the fruits of his labor. Single “I’m Ballin” released February 24, 2019 was used by the NBA (National Basketball Association) in connection with a partnership with distribution label United Masters created by Steve Stoute.
The song was first used by the Milwaukee Bucks in April 2019 for the NBA Playoffs, highlighting the 2018-19 regular season. In June 2019, the NBA used “I’m Ballin” once again promoting the NBA MVP candidate selection. The Instagram post was viewed nearly three million times, growing Zane’s buzz, reputation and fan-base.