USC will welcome Bryce Vine to headline the annual Spring Fest next week. Vine has seen recent success with his hit song “Drew Barrymore” climbing the charts, and his fusion of rap, pop and R&B has caught the attention of fans across the country.
Now 30 years old, Vine said music has always been a source of therapy for him, and he began writing music and playing guitar at 13.
After starting a punk band in high school, Vine became more comfortable with being on stage and performing. He then took his talents to Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he was exposed to people and genres he had never previously worked with.
“I was opened up to a whole new world of people from all over the place and different genres,” Vine said. “I started messing around with more pop and rap kind of stuff.”
Vine’s mixing of several genres is intentional, he said. Around the same time he was studying at Berklee, “Graduation” by Kanye West became popular, and Kid Cudi was a big artist as well.
“It was like a new time where rap and pop were more in sync,” said Vine.
When making music, Vine draws inspiration from artists like Frank Ocean, Gorillaz, Childish Gambino and anyone that has “kind of made their own sound by pulling from different genres.”
One of Vine’s most popular singles, “Drew Barrymore” has over 113 million streams on Spotify. The song combines rap and pop with a soulful beat. Vine himself has become an artist that refuses to be defined by a specific genre or general sound, he said.
Vine was never under the impression that making it in the music industry was going to be easy. He said he learned that from West-Cast rapper G-Eazy, who Vine connected with on Myspace.
“We started working together on some songs,” said Vine. “I watched his whole struggle coming up, and I learned a lot from that.”
While Vine has become established in the music industry with much recognition to his name, he said he still feels like he has a long way to go. He said he looks at success as a gradual journey with some highlights along the way, including performing at the 2018 Video Music Awards.
“There’s no guarantees,” he said. “What I have today could be gone tomorrow if I don't play it the right way.”
Vine is no stranger to college campuses, having performed at other colleges across the country. Once a college student himself, he said he can identify with students and the struggles they might be going through.
“Music helps you get through a lot of the struggles of being young and on your own for the first time,” Vine said. “It’s such a big part of your life, you sort of need a soundtrack for it.”
For young artists trying to break into the industry, Vine has some advice.
“Be authentic to you, try to find what makes your voice interesting,” he said.“If you love it enough, you’ll stick with it.”
Students should prepare for a high energy show at Spring Fest and Vine describes his shows as interactive.
Vine’s debut album, "Carnival," is set to be released this summer. The Spring Fest concert will take place on Greene Street at 7 p.m. on April 12.