Something new, something classic. From writing songs in his single Trinidadian mom’s Calgary basement, to becoming Apple Music Canada’s “New Artist of the Week”, earning over six million streams, getting nods from tastemakers like Ebro Darden and Live Nation’s ‘Ones To Watch’, and as performing as direct support slots for international icons such as Kiesza, Akon, The Chainsmokers, Jarreau Vandal, Nelly, and Phony Ppl – Ruben Young has become the crossover Soul artist to watch out of Canada. In June 2021, Ruben linked up with Compton rising hip-hop star, Buddy to release their summer throwback anthem, “TNT”. Fresh, funk-laden production, and live brass performed by players from Busty and The Bass, the record has already been generating a buzz, recently winning the Yangaroo DMDS 2020 Indie Spotlight Contest. His 2019 debut EP, Dreamstate featured Odd Future pioneer, Hodgy Beats and Grammy nominated producer, Lord Quest leading to features on Beats 1 Radio, BBC Radio One Extra, CBC, and FM and satellite radio across Canada.
Get to know SHIFTER’s Artist of the Month for June, Ruben Young.
The happiest, healthiest, wealthiest and most fulfilled version of myself yet. And also one of the most influential artists in my genre, globally.
Something everyone should know about me is…
Nothing came easy, and I love the journey. I’m the son of a single Trinidadian mother, from a country music town.
If I could give one piece advice to my fellow creators it would be…
Keep going. This road wasn’t meant to be easy – and that’s easy to say – everyone knows it, but it’s a whole different beast to live it, and to see it through. No matter how fast, or slowly your rise comes, a path in art – especially as a personal brand is not only going to test your patience, its going to test your character, your self-love and your definition of work ethic. On my own path, I’ve found that real happiness in the creative life comes from knowing myself, and finding real trust along the way.
Recent or upcoming projects:
My new single, “TNT” with Buddy just dropped on June 11. It’s definitely the most exciting release of my career. From working with one of my favourite artists on earth in LA, all the way back to writing the song over and over, adding brass players from my favourite Canadian band, Busty and The Bass, signing the single to my first label deal with Set Records – it’s been a journey. It’s a huge step towards the influence of the soul artists that made me fall in love with music in the first place – James Brown, Earth Wind and Fire, Raphael Saadiq, Justin Timberlake. As an independent, self managed artist I can definitely say I’ve never worked so hard for something in my life as this single, so I’m proud of it.
Click here to apply to be SHIFTER’s Artist of the Month.