In 2019, the Dallas hip-hop artist had a backstage encounter with Lauryn Hill. Nothing came of their exchange immediately, but later it had a profound effect on Amore XO. He realized his music didn't have the kind of depth that would appeal to a "conscious" artist such as Hill. In order to become legendary, he thought, he'd have to rebrand and focus on making timeless records. He deleted every piece of music he'd ever recorded.
COVID-19 messed up Amore XO’s plans just like everyone else's. He delayed releasing any new music until October 2021, when he dropped a single titled “Same Ol G Freestyle.” He followed up with three more singles this year and a mixtape titled Southern Elegance Vol. 1, which included all original beats from Cleveland producer Tao Bey.
Now, Amore XO is looking forward to his second project this year and first studio album, titled Seen This a Long Time Ago. The feature list for the album is small but packed with star power, such as Dallas artist M3cca and BET Music Award winner Big K.R.I.T., who released his first album since 2019 earlier this year.
“What Seen This a Long Time Ago is about is me just materializing my visions and my ideas through audio and then with the visuals," says Amore XO. "You will get to see it for real.”
The rapper has one of the smoothest, most original flows to come out of Southern hip-hop. His cadence comes to him effortlessly.
“I don’t try to sound unique, it’s just me being myself,” he says. “This is me betting on myself, believing in my talent and knowing that it is completely different than what’s out there. But not just using that word ‘different’ because everybody uses that, until you play [my music] compared to something next to it.”
“This is me betting on myself, believing in my talent and knowing that it is completely different than what’s out there." – Amore XO
Amore XO says that Tao and Amaru Almighty, two producers with whom he works regularly, helped to build his sound. He doesn't like to rap to beats that sound similar to mainstream artists' productions, and his two producers pride themselves on creating innovative instrumentals.
“I really want to do this shit on a bigger level and represent Texas in a different way," Amore says.
Southern Elegance Vol. 1 was a trending new release on popular independent music platforms Audiomack and DJ Booth. The mixtape can be streamed across all platforms and purchased directly from his website, as will Seen This A Long Time Ago after it's released next month. The rapper likes being able to connect with his fans directly and learning to navigate the business as an independent artist as his music continues to spread across the world.
He is the owner of an independent record label and brand called Lonestar World, an umbrella under which he releases his music and sells some pretty fly clothing.
Amore XO is still waiting on some vocals and cover art to come in before officially announcing the album's rollout date, and he's busy these days organizing the accompanying music videos, a listening party and apparel drop as the season changes. He's also working on lining up some scheduled shows to wrap up 2022. It's been one hell of a year.