Cocoa, FL – In French, “Etienne” means, quite literally, “the crown.” The name is fitting for up and coming rapper Etienne Conner (Known better to fans as “Royaltee”). An Army veteran, the rapper turned to music as a way to express himself. “That’s my joy in making music,” he explains, “It’s always been an expression for me.” With music about his life experiences; relationships, family, the artist focuses on wordplay and realism. He reasons, “I try and make the audience feel like they know me, and give them my all.”
Royaltee is currently working on a mixtape, entitled Life Is, which is anticipated to drop this spring. The artist is pouring out his heart on the album, which will feature about ten tracks. One song, specifically, hits close to home for the rising star. The song, called “New Day,” is about his cousin who passed away two years ago in Chicago. Despite being thousands of miles away, Royaltee and his cousin spoke daily, and were very close. One day, he realized his cousin wasn’t picking up his phone, and discovered his beloved family member had passed. “He was such a big motivation and influence to me,” explains Royaltee, “When he died, I was crushed.” So crushed, in fact, that he wasn’t sure he could continue on with his music. “I said, ‘I have a good job, I’ll just stick to that.’” But his brother, knowing Royaltee’s potential, encouraged him to push on.
Even though “New Day” comes from a place of loss and sadness, listeners can expect lots of fun and upbeat music on Life Is as well. Above all, Royaltee strives to make his music relatable. Unlike the basic rap of today’s hit music, Royaltee’s lyricism rivals the classic music of the 80s and 90s, when storytelling and wordplay were still paramount to the music. “That’s the approach I take: Not just that you can go to the club and turn up, but you can also sit back and say ‘This guy’s been through some stuff.’”
Royaltee isn’t in the rap game for money or fame – although one could suspect, with his talent and gift of the gab that will com too – his only mission is to be heard.