Songwriter and Executive Producer, Zo Duncan can switch from Country to Dancehall in his inspirations. Parallel with an uncanny ability to find and match up the most expressive vocalists, Zo manages to break genre in an often-cutthroat industry by building resonance with some of the most up-and-coming artists. He believes stellar level songcraft and serious industry focus do not cancel out the versatility and this attitude, plus his career beginnings as a published poet set him apart from other industry professionals.
In each track he creates, there is a magnetic pull between beats, bass, synth elements, and vocals. The energy in his work is free-flowing and his attitude towards music natural and based on a deep well of genuine love for what he does.
Where are you from?
I’m from Detroit. Born and raised.
Where are you now?
Right now, I’m on the west coast. Back and forth between Los Angeles & AZ.
How would you describe the music that you typically create?
Unique. I merge sounds, vocalists, styles, genres. Every time I listen to some artist seminar or something, the main thing they try to instill is, “Find your Sound”. I’m a sound maker. I thrive in standing out. I would rather you say, “Damn Zo wrote that too” than “Oh I can tell Zo wrote this”. Unless you’re saying the latter just because it’s fire and you know my pen. Pretty much, I don’t follow any of the songwriting rules, yes there are rules, when I write. I just go with what feels good.
Who influenced you most throughout your career?
I’ve always been influenced by just dope ass music. There are a lot of legends before me that I soak in and study, but when I hear a great song, I’m like damn I should’ve written that. Not in envy or even competitive way but just like a man the writing on this is incredible enough to make me for a slight second wish I dropped it. That type of shit makes me want to create. If I get in the studio after hearing your music, it’s the greatest compliment I can give.
What are your most notable achievements in the music industry?
I just dropped my first EP, Half Truths & Whole Lies, on January 7, 2022. It landed number 3 on the iTunes UK R&B Charts and number 60 on the Official All Genre Charts on iTunes UK. I’m still riding that high. In fact, I just got the plaque in the mail 2 weeks ago.
Talk about your latest release.
Half Truths & Whole Lies is pretty much a sample of what I can do with melodic music, R&B, Pop, etc. I made sure to put a few different styles, a few different emotions, a few different topics into this project so it doesn’t feel like a typical cohesive album because it’s a sample platter. I want people to be like, “Damn, this kid can do it all”. I executive produced the whole thing. I chose and paired the artists based on sound and differences. It’s a great body of work. I advise everyone to check it out. I couldn’t be happier with it.
Any parting words?
Thank you. To anyone reading this, everyone that listens to my music, everyone that collaborates on my music, and anyone that speaks positivity on my name. Huge thank you to my parents for always supporting my moves and being my loudest cheerleaders. That type of stuff is important. Seeing them proud makes me go harder in my next move. And big thanks to Illa Ridder for these dope ass pictures!
Where can people find you?