Ray Dawn is what happens when the restraints come off, the bars are torn down and there’s nothing left besides a man and his ambition.
It was only recently that Dawn was in rap’s purgatory — stuck in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where hip-hop talent rarely escapes. So he picked up and moved to Atlanta, where it’s no longer about being a big fish in a small pond. It’s about being the best there is. And he’s ready to do it, that thing they said he couldn’t: make it.
What sets Dawn apart is his story. He dropped out of law school in 2008 to pursue his passion — all the while keeping his revered day job as a corporate writer for a big bank. He used to be nervous about his potential. Now, he’s secure, and by God, he’s ready.
The thing is, he’s honest. And he’ll tell you he hates being associated with rappers. Gucci isn’t for him. But this is his territory. The next Jay Z? Perhaps. Without the jewelry though. He wants to finance a foundation for his sister instead. She’s a teacher.
Just listen to “Shit To Do,” his coming-of-age trek into his own impatience, guided by defiance and filled line-to-line with bars. It’s good on the ride and good for the soul. His live show is packed with energy and sophistication; a TEDx of hip-hop that speaks to every person in the audience. He used to murder beats to satisfy a chip on his shoulder. Now he rides them, and melody follows. So should you.