Hood Illustrated

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[Exclusive] Meet BUDDIEZ: A Rising Dynamic Duo In The World Of Music



The history of music is one of great partnerships. Think Lennon and McCartney, Simon and
Garfunkel, Eric B. & Rakim, and so many others. Such musical duos are dynamic because
both parties are highly talented and also the best of friends. This is a musical legacy BUDDIEZ
is proud to be a part of, even if the two friends fell into it by accident.

“I think if you’re not great friends with your songwriting and musical partner, the lack of
chemistry will have a negative effect on your music,” explains Gianni Taylor who alongside
Justin Escalona is the driving force behind BUDDIEZ. Gianni added, “Justin and I have a lot of
history and we don’t always see eye to eye, but we know each other’s strengths and we play to
them. We also have an intuitive understanding that goes beyond words, and I think that’s the
foundation for all great music. We don’t take ourselves too seriously and do what we do strictly
for fun.”

Both Justin and Gianni grew up in the Chicago suburbs with a natural love for music. A chance
encounter led to the creation of BUDDIEZ and the rest is history.

Justin picks up the story and explains, “I have a background in making music videos for acts
such as Chance The Rapper, Wu-Tang Clan, and Mac Miller. I also have my own clothing line,
1340 COLLECTIVE, which is the go-to brand for a lot of celebrities. As you can see, I was already
deeply immersed in the music world when I met Gianni who was a singer and songwriter. We
hit it off straight away, and to cut a long story short, Gianni came up with the idea of writing
some songs and I would sing them. We were just messing around really because I’ve never
sung before in my life, but the reception we received was bigger than our wildest dreams.”

Recorded in just two weeks, the BUDDIEZ album has been a runaway success.
What began as a fun project between two friends has gained a juggernaut-like momentum.

Gianni revealed, “When we started this, we had no expectations and it was strictly for fun and
not motivated by profit. I think that’s why it’s been such a success. People have picked up on
the vibe of two friends messing around and having fun, and they appear to dig the realness of
it. We’re just a couple of kids with a dream and who can’t relate to that?”

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