Toronto Rapper CBJ Doesn’t Believe in Failure

After a tough upbringing, Toronto hip-hop artist CBJ found himself heading down a dangerous path. Now, these experiences help shape the music he creates.

Hi Tamal (aka CBJ), welcome to LiveTrigger Magazine!

Let’s start by introducing your project: what is it and where are you based? 

Tamal wering sunglasses

The project name is called “The Come Up”.

I am located in the city of Toronto (Downtown Toronto).

How was your 2019 so far?

I realized so far that failure makes us scared and accepting things we did not plan for, however, I do not believe in the word “failure”.

So far in 2019 I strongly believe the word failure is just a delay of success and as long as we have a life we should continue to reach for our goals and not concede to the word “failure”.


What’s the most exciting thing that’s happened to you recently?

The most amazing thing is the time I got to chill with some fans at a recent event, and graduating from college.

Tamal Press Shot

What do you like about living in Toronto?

It’s the most diverse, breathtaking city in North America and I love everything about my city including its people.


Where do you draw inspiration and how do you create your music?

My inspiration comes from my past experiences, where I grew up in a multi-cultural city in the northern parts of Toronto.

With gangs strolling past daily, the scenes of drug addicts, trap houses, dope spots and apartment complexes is where the gangs and crew hangs.

Raised by a single parent, struggling to make two ends meet, learning from past mistakes, dropped out of school, subsequently found myself heading down a dangerous path.

This is what inspires me and the driving force I used to create my music.

CBJ Feature Image

Who are your favourite artists and how did they influence your style & sound?

My two favorite artists are Lil Wayne and Drake.

I am heavily influenced by hip-hop smooth flowing sensation Lil Wayne and his life growing up being abandoned.

Lil Wayne grew up in the impoverished neighbourhood of New Orleans, Louisiana.

His mother, a cook, gave birth to him when she was 19 years old.

His parents divorced when he was 2, and his father permanently abandoned the family which I can relate with because my family and life experiences are similar.

Both men as artists styles and sounds tell a story in a different way.

They go hard and I can feel and see what they try to express through their sounds which I have gravitated.


What’s the best live music show you’ve seen recently?

Unfortunately, I have not experienced a live show because I am not in a financial position to enjoy life the way I would like.

From an extremely young age, I had to learn how to prioritize in order to survive.

CBJ wearing sunglasses

What is your best and your worst memory on the road?

My best memory is when I meet new people and learn from them, seeing the joy on their faces and my worst would be the time I had a flat tire.


What do you think about Livetrigger?

What I love about Livetrigger is the wide window they provide for everyone.

I am amazed that they offer booking agents and promoters, live music venues, they give access to finding bands and musicians and allows artists to book music gigs all in one space for free, absolutely amazing.