Ohio’s Next Top Rapper Talks Struggles of Toledo, more

4 Mins read

Toledo, Ohio’s Keyn Explains the Struggle in his Music

In an isolated city of Ohio that borders Michigan and is only an hour away from Detroit, a tour of Toledo, Ohio will expose you to police cameras on every major corner, dilapidated and vacant properties, an intense police presence, or just your average struggle of growing up in urban communities.

One section of the city known as Out Hill, centered around Hill Avenue, is one of Toledo’s largest neighborhoods as one can say the community expands from Byrne Road and Reynolds Road with a number of sub hoods within the community like Hollow Park.

Sitting directly across from the University of Toledo on Dorr Street, growing up in Out Hill can have its trials and tribulations despite the appearance of the neighborhood, where homes were built later compared to the other urban neighborhoods of Toledo.

One person that the Out Hill area produced is up and coming rapper Keyn, whose tales in his music can explain life of growing up in Toledo and the tolls it takes, quoting a line “why they don’t show love to you until your face on a shirt”.

If anyone is a fan of raw talent and appreciate relatable and reality music with an own extinct sound that paints a picture of everyday street person and their struggles of Toledo or any city that has an urban community.

While we are in an era of Hip Hop that is mostly fantasy of street lies with artist leaving the consequences and troubles out of their rap, listening Keyn gives an audience a true perspective of the streets.


TheRealStreetz.com: What part of the city of Toledo are you from?

Keyn: Out Hill

TheRealStreetz.com: What’s the overall environment of the streets of Toledo?

Keyn: I had people throughout the whole city but a lot of hoods being in beef is what often kept the city from coming together.

TheRealStreetz.com: What were some of the obstacles you had to overcome growing up?

Keyn: A lot of hate ,losing loved ones to the streets rather it was jail or dead . I lost a lot of friends to both situations before I even got in my 20s. Growing up I knew I wanted to pursue music but was often side tracked and To overcome my obstacles that even now I still struggle to fight through I manage to keep my self around positive vibes.

TheRealStreetz.com:  With Detroit just miles away were there any influences?

Keyn:  I like the whole Detroit movement I relate to a lot of what they talking and been through some of the same situations.

TheRealStreetz.com: What about the influences from Ohio cities?

Keyn:  Other than Toledo it’s a few cities buzzin doing they thing like Cleveland, Dayton, Columbus, and I’m sure it’s other cities with artist on they grind.  Perfect your craft and don’t rush the process we got our time coming soon.  Shoutout to all the real ones in Ohio, but I put on for my hometown and state all the way and I would collab with any artists as long they 100.

TheRealStreetz.com: How did growing up in Toledo help build you as an artist?

Keyn: It really helped me put in the hard work ,because coming from here you had to make opportunities happen it didn’t come to you. Also in a crazy way growing up in Toledo gave me a story to tell in my music

TheRealStreet.com: What can you say represents your content and style of rap?

Keyn: How I’m feeling , reality rap ,motivational rap, I tell my life story and experiences I witnessed or been through. I feel my style is laidback type of flow . Smooth but sometimes aggressive and can put you in seat of passenger as i tell my story . Also straight forward I like to say the things that’s always in the back of your mind or your gut feeling and speak it through the music for the ones who feel they don’t have nobody to talk to

TheRealStreetz.com: What does True To It Records mean and who are some of the artist associated with the label?

Keyn: I wanted the label to be more than just about the money , it’s the motto I wanted to put behind us . Stay true , do everything from the heart , and to be all in . Artist on the label are ML Tay , A Town , Loop , and also me Keyn.

TheRealStreetz.com:  What are some of your favorite songs and projects you have made so far?

Keyn: Many of my songs are my favorite it’s so many to name but right off back I can say “Do It remix” feat Chewy Lo and Meezy, which was a remake of one of my tracks off of “ The Drop Off” album,  “Right Back Pt 2” , “Can’t Change” , and “On Go” are a few of my favorites off “The Drop Off 1.5” album but my favorites also change all the time. One of my favorite projects was my early album in 2016 called “Mind Blown” just the history behind that album , my life at that time I really put my all in it despite situations of loosing friends , everything I invested into the project , also issues with some songs being lost due to studio getting ready to relocate but with the help of “Jon Beez” known engineer he helped me a lot on recovering lost files and mixing it all up. I learned a lot working on this album plus it was more of personal songs I did from the heart I talked a lot about what was going on in my life at that time. When I listen to it I feel like it’s a radio to a time machine.

TheRealStreetz.com: What is your overall goal in music?

Keyn: I want to bring a new wave to the rap game, and set a bar in the music business that hasn’t been reached . We also aim to give fans music they can relate to, kick it to, ride to, motivate, and help them get through hard times or struggles . We plan to have longevity in the music making our mark in the world.

Make sure to follow Keyn on Instagram: @Keyn419 , watch videos on Youtube: KeynMusic and check out all Keyn’s music available on all platforms.


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