The Raycam Project

"Dream Real"

I’ve been following The Flower Bomb Collective since I interviewed them for Discorder’s Dec/Jan issue, and I was excited to discover The Raycam Project, created by Flower Bomb members TALON and Dushine. Their friendship, and the network of music and musicians spiraling out around them, really encapsulates what I love about the music scene here in Vancouver. Their music is so raw and real about what it means to live in the Downtown Eastside, and it needs to be heard. So keep your ears open for them on Pacific Noise Weird (CiTR 101.9 FM on Fridays @ 5pm) which focuses on the music scene here in the Pacific Northwest, because I will be having them on the air. I’m excited to keep following this group forward. 


Cora: So, TALON, Dushine, tell me about yourselves, and this project you’ve been working on.

TALON: So, the name is The Raycam Project. We only recently started making music together — it was spontaneous, right? Dushine and I have always been brothers. Since he got back from Africa we just started hanging out. I used to freestyle, and he was like, “oh, I don’t like to freestyle.” So I [would respond with], “well, then let’s write.” We wrote our first track, and just kept going. It was never planned, it was never like, “come over to my house, let’s make a song.” It’s more  like, “yo, what are you up to? Let’s hang out.”

Dushine: And we wrote so many songs that it was just like “yo, might as well put it all together.” We got influenced by where we come from. We’ve seen a lot of things, we’ve seen a lot of heaviness. So the way we live, [is to find]  the words and express ourselves. I hope that people listening to it can relate. Even if they don’t, at least we’re telling our stories, you know? For real.

TALON: Yeah, we’re telling our own stories, and expressing ourselves. You know, coming from East Vancouver, it’s got this reputation of just bad kids, troubled youth, and that’s all people really know. With this project, we want  people to actually hear  what goes on with the youth that live in this neighbourhood — the Downtown East Side — the struggles we face day to day. People will get the real side of the East Side with The Raycam Project.

Cora: They’ll get to see the people that live in the Downtown East Side, not just the poverty that exists there. 

TALON: Exactly, exactly. 


Cora: Tell me about your favourite track off the album.

TALON: My favourite track would be ‘Dream Real’. We were supposed to record a different song at the studio because we had some time booked. But we had some time to kill, and we wrote a new song in thirty minutes but didn’t plan to record it. When we showed up at the studio and played the beat it  was like, “okay well, let’s record to it.” So did we did, and now it’s my favourite song. ‘Dream Real’ is about the struggles we face, and see, every day in the Downtown East Side. It’s how I feel —  I heard the beat, and it just came out. It comes from the heart.

Dushine: Straight from the heart, from the soul.

TALON: Exactly.

Dushine: My favourite track is called ‘Came Up’. It was just so different, it was something I’ve never heard before. I was surprised by what I was saying, and then TALON went super hard on it — he went crazy. 

Cora: So how did you get started?

Dushine: I’m from a small country in East Africa called Burundi. Growing up there was like a movie, for real. Gunshots everywhere, it was crazy. But there was a lot of joy, I enjoyed living there. Then I came to Canada, I was twelve. It made me think about how we don’t always think about where we come from, you know? So, we just kinda live. 


Cora: How’d you get into music?

Dushine: That one is a funny one. My friend, his name Glady, RIP to him, he made a song and he went crazy. Every time we went to parties, all the shawties wanted him, you know what I’m saying? I was like, “Yo, I really gotta do this! I can do this!” Based on that story I came up with my first song ‘Hey Shawty’. It was just to get all the girls to catch on the vibe. Then I got into music more, and I found out I like it. I love it now. 

TALON: Music’s been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. Whether at home or at school. I used to go to St. James Music Academy. That was my introduction to music — to singing, butI also used to play the piano. If you asked me this six months ago, I would have said I started making music because I love listening to music — but now I love expressing myself. If I’m going through something, a hard time in my life, then I have music. I write it out, I get it out. Even if I don’t release it, I still write about it so I can get it out. Listening to music and being influenced by the artists  I listen to  got me thinking, what if I make my own music? At first I started off with just freestyling, with a beat off youtube, then I started writing. I did that for a couple months. I was trying to find a studio for the longest time, and when I suddenly found one I didn’t have anything prepared. I just went to the studio and wrote the verses for ‘Touch Down’, which was my first single. That’s how I started. Now with The Raycam Project   music is a release. It’s about what I’ve gone through, how I feel, but also so that  people can relate. I think that’s a huge part of why I write — is the relating. Because I used to relate to the songs I listened to, what if I could do that for other people? I know I’m not alone in this, whatever I go through — everyone does. Everyone has downs.


Cora: So when is the album dropping? Where are you taking this?

TALON: We’re dropping the album this year, with two music videos. There’s going to be ten or twelve songs on the album. We’re still planning everything out, trying to lock in the vision. But we’re giving everyone an insight to the Downtown East Side. It’s going to be on all platforms, get it anywhere. We just want to keep going forward, keep making music.