FreePaysTheSoul is a recording artist from Virginia blurring the lines between hip hop, pop, and indie music. In April 2021, FreePaysTheSoul released his debut album, Today is Tomorrow. Since its release, the album has been streamed more than 25,000 times on Spotify alone. FreePaysTheSoul is gearing up for his next EP release, Pivoting Emotions, coming to all streaming platforms on April 6. We sat down with Gus of FreePaysTheSoul to talk about where the name comes from, his upcoming EP, what he loves most about making music, and a lot more in this exclusive interview. Want to learn more about FPTS? Head to their official website.
Thanks for chatting with us, Gus! Tell us a little bit about FreePaysTheSoul, how it started, and the message behind it.
Absolutely. FreePaysTheSoul is not just the artist name I go by, but it’s also a movement. For anybody that believes in the underdog, anybody that is a supportive person to their friends and family and believes in kindness. What inspired it is just, you know, at the end of the day, everybody has gifts, and everybody has things that they really enjoyed doing. And if you really think about what pays a soul, like internal, like intrinsic value. For me, it’s being on stage and being able to collaborate with musicians and music, like just creating music from all over the world, you know, so when I’m on stage, obviously, people have to purchase a ticket to go be entertained. And yeah, you know, like they’re giving away something, but little do they know that they’re actually feeding my soul because me getting to perform for them is the only thing that pays my soul because that’s the thing I love to do the most. So FreePaysTheSoul is a movement and my artist name.
Tell us more about your upcoming project, Pivoting Emotions.
I have a new project coming out called Pivoting Emotions. It’s going to be released on Thursday, April 6. I traditionally like to release my music on Friday, but 6 is my favorite number. So I just had to release it on Thursday, April 6. And what we wanted to do is pretty much just celebrate all the hard work that went behind that. Even though now we’re miles ahead of the marketing and the technology that artists had back in the day, even when things like Spotify for Artists, you know, I can see where people are streaming my music, I can see their demographic, but I don’t know who they are. And this year, by being able to connect with actual fans live in their neighborhoods, or their neck of the woods performing and getting to meet in the venues, we’re also actually drawing them to come in and enjoy this kind of music and connect with the band and the movement. So we’re really, really stoked about the EP release on April 6.
What is the most rewarding experience you’ve had in your career?
There’s so much work that goes behind the music. So if you don’t get the fulfillment, if you don’t really love it, you won’t make it. But I think just like anyone that’s played a sport, you know, back in the day, or currently playing a sport, there’s this, you know, you work so hard in practice to get to the game, you know, so when you’re an artist, you work so hard on creating, and writing and distributing and marketing and the whole nine yards. So as artists getting, being able to perform it is like the game, you know, it’s like the most fun thing.
And I think one of the rewarding things is having people come on and after we perform asking how long it took to rehearse that, only to tell them that we just made it up on the spot. I’ve had people, after a concert say they really enjoy your music and it helps them. So, getting to create music for them to either do tasks around the house, or just be able to take a break and walk outside or, you know, it’s the weekend and they’re gonna go drive to see my friend who is two hours away while spending time to just listen and vibe to the music is really rewarding.
Where does the positivity and optimistic perspective in your music come from?
I think the positive comes from it being a coping mechanism. I think we haven’t really hit on why the album is called Pivoting Emotions. But this is probably a good segue to that, because music is a coping mechanism. I’ve learned throughout the years that, as a human being, you can’t help how you feel, but you can help how you react. Right? And what I’ve learned in my years of living is you just really, when, when things calm, like someone makes me angry, that doesn’t mean that I need to react in that negative way, but he is hurting my feelings or she’s hurting my feelings, right? You can be really successful in this world, by controlling your emotions and learning how to pivot from them. So when bad things happen, as a coping mechanism, I’ve learned how to pivot well to not react wrong or make the situation worse.
I truly believe in manifestation. But I really believe that things take time to happen. And I also really believe that like 98%, of what’s going to happen to you, the universe is going to decide, but the 2% that you as a person have control over is your attitude, and how you go about things, right? So if you look at the world, in your life, as a canvas, 98% of the canvas is going to be drawn. But that 2% of how you control your attitude and stuff. That’s the paintbrush. So I’m either going to choose for this thing that bothered me to ruin my day, or I’m going to be like, “Is this going to matter when I’m 80 years old?” Probably not. So, I am not going to get hurt by this.
Any messages or shoutouts?
I am on a quest to find folks that enjoy my music. If there are people that are in your circle or in your neighborhood that are creating music and creating art, it only takes two seconds to help them out by posting about it or sharing it with others. And I feel like a lot of folks are willing to share famous people’s content, but not their friends. A lot of times when you say “support musicians”, people think of support as you have to give money to them. And you don’t have to spend money. You just have to be able to share their art with those you know. So I would say, you know, if someone that’s in your circle and makes music that they’re trying to push out, if it’s good and if you like it, definitely share it because it goes, it goes a long way.
And then the other thing too, is like, again, like if you’re out there, and you’ve listened to my music, and you’re a musician, yourself and want to collaborate on a project, reach out. My goal is to collaborate with folks from all around the world and create awesome music. And at the end of the day, I think what makes me feel good about all this work is that it’s not for nothing, like, it’s not that I’m trying to blow up and be like the next, you know, big superstar. For me, it’s like, when I’m gone from this planet, my music will live on. And whether it’s my little niece or my little nephew, or a neighbor whose kid knows me or whoever, like, that’s my legacy. Everything that I’m doing is going to be being played even when I’m gone.
So, you know, if you’re out there and you want to collaborate, let me know. And if you have artists around you who you really like, you know, you don’t need to support them with money, you just got to share, share their art, and make the world go round.
Where can we find your music?
I am on any, anywhere you stream music, including Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, and even Pandora. If you want to get like the full all the songs, just go to fpts6.com which will take you to where all the songs are on my Bandcamp page. And if you want to support financially on that, you can do it there. But I’m on Spotify and iTunes, as well as all the other streaming platforms where you can listen to it.
Get ready for FreePaysTheSoul’s second official project, Pivoting Emotions, coming to all digital streaming platforms on April 6. Stay tuned for more updates about FPTS, his live performances, and more. Want to get to know Gus a little more? Check out this article or tune in to his tracks on Spotify or wherever you stream music.