Only by day takes his artistry day by day as he navigates the South Florida scene with poetic bars over jovial beats inspiring his community to fully explore themselves as individuals. Taking that journey by storm and creating from the aftermath of their epiphanies.
Debuting his music in 2018, Onlybyday also known as Dashwn Watson released his first EP
“Don’t be so emotional” which can be found on SoundCloud, illustrating a story with a futuristic pop-rap aesthetic mirroring Day’s boyish personality as he romanticizes Broward County and his budding adulthood.
Who are you?
Onlybyday: Onlybyday short as Day, 25 years old, based here in Broward County Florida. I’m an artist because I feel I am inspired by a broad scope of things that encapsulate my passions. Aside from music, I am a graphic designer and I have a clothing brand “DayWear”. I have deep influences in rap & hip-hop and galvanize some of my ideas from Ye & Andre. I have a lot of capabilities that help me express my ideas in different avenues and I try to utilize them to tell all the stories I have.
What inspired you to start releasing and why that specific project?
Onlybyday: Projects are special to me because I take my time with them. I live life to experience it and after deeply reflecting I create stories to tell throughout my music. My first EP was “Don’t be so emotional (2017)” which is the 1st installment of a trilogy I am currently working on. The 2nd ep of this installment was “Some things just feel better (2020)” & the 3rd and last installment that I’m currently working on now are “Some things never change.”
What was the reference, what inspired all of that?
Onlybyday: Art for me is an emotional expression and is how I cultivate all my emotions and I put them in a place where others can relate and have their own experiences. Music played a large role in shaping me as an individual growing up and it’s very motivational.
How would you describe your target audience?
Onlybyday: Unconconvential artists, the dreamers, the younger generation of people who are just learning about themselves. Always thinking of things that are bigger than life. I want to show them this is what is possible if you take your time and take those ideas further.
Besides SFL (South Florida) where are some other places, you’d like to perform in?
Onlybyday: Definitely working on some out-of-state plans that will be taking place in 2022, so be on the lookout for that.
How would you say your experience or relationship has been with the SFL(South Florida) crowd since coming out as an artist?
Onlybyday: I love it, I recently came to a turning point and I appreciate the different mediums of art and how talented everyone is. There’s a lot of people that gravitate towards me and I cherish that. I believe South Florida is a hub and I want to shine a light on that, this is my hub and I don’t see myself leaving permanently anytime soon.
What is the most popular song you have out right now?
Onlybyday: “Slide,” everyone loves that song. I have so many other better songs in my opinion and I feel that I have other songs that deserve this title. I believe people gravitate towards the sonics of it and it has a nice composition, no judgment though I make what I make and people like what they like.
Do you have any collaborations coming up?
It’s not within my team immediately though “Get it before I die” with my people at Omnifest you know some community works. Me and Aster the Gemini have a great song that could set some shit off. I want to do more collabs though for sure, but I want to establish more things within myself before I start seeking that.
Why is that?
Onlybyday: Perfectionism in me doesn’t mean it’s right but who knows, maybe some people want to work with me right now.
I feel that the perfectionist mindset doesn’t allow artists to let creativity flow in and out. I feel that being an artist and being creative is like a river and when you’re focused on perfecting everything you have an anchor in that river that’s restricting you. So if you’re telling yourself there are more things you need to do for people to work with you then that’s just going to be a block for you, because like you said you never know who is longing to work with you and who isn’t.
Onlybyday: I 100% agree with that and, interestingly enough, I had a good portion of my journey where I wanted to work with a lot of people and I reached out and felt I got dubbed on a lot of things and now I’m at a stage where if I bring up something, it’s most likely going to be a yes because I built that rapport and that consistency but it doesn’t erase the fact that there are people who are still going to say no. It never changed, there’s always going to be people who do and who don’t and as an artist, I feel that I’ve aligned and learned to be tailored more with the people who do. I don’t see a point in forcing anything. I am just open to new opportunities and potential and getting off of that anchor you mentioned has helped me to not be subjugated to perfectionism.
Do you create most of your cover art?
Onlybyday: Yes, I’ve been doing graphic design for almost as long as I’ve been doing music and it’s something that I grew better at, parallel to my growth in music. Being that I am a graphic designer it allows me to make art that tells even more of a story along with the music, it’s not just cover art I’m trying to tell a story and I’m trying to give some visual imagery that’s distinct. I make all my cover art, but I definitely have a team that helps me execute a lot of ideas.
How far do you wanna see your music go?
Onlybyday: How far?! I’m trying to make movies, animated films, I’m trying to be on everything that the art can touch. Music is just the easiest transferable medium for my messages because it’s a song, which is very digestible. I’m trying to tell a story in every possible fashion.
What is an obstacle you’ve faced throughout your journey as an artist?
Why is that?
Onlybyday: Being so fixated on perfectionism, I would tell myself if it’s not 100% I’ll give them zero.
Do you feel like if it’s not perfect people won’t take you seriously?
Onlybyday: Yes, I have felt that way and I would feel that I wouldn’t be satisfied if I didn’t hit it on the nail and I would question why would I put this out in the world if I’m not satisfied with it. Perfect is only in the moment and that’s something that I’ve recently come to realize after being honest with myself and figuring out why I’m not making the progress I want. When you see that you’re the reason you have to make the necessary changes.
When did you drop your merch line?
Onlybyday: I came out with Daywear about a year & a half ago, I used to make shirts here and there, but I didn’t take it seriously because I didn’t feel good enough, but now it’s not about that. It’s about just putting my art out regardless of how I feel.
Do you think you’ll ever get into making pieces and one of one’s?
Onlybyday: I love learning and growing so I’m definitely going to take the fashion and merchandise to higher heights when that time is present.
Besides Kanye West who are some of your other inspirations?
Onlybyday: Musically, Outkast, Childish Gambino, Drake, Kendrick, Nipsey Hussle
Animation, Takashi Murakami
Film, Quentin Tarintino
Design, Virgil Abloh
What is your cultural background?
Onlybyday: Jamaican and African-American, I don’t resonate with my Jamaican side because I didn’t grow up around it, but as I get older I want to learn and become closer to that part of my heritage.
Do you feel that growing up in South Florida has made an influence on your sound?
Onlybyday: Entirely, the stories I tell are a by-product of the experiences I’ve seen and the experiences people have expressed to me. If I feel some type of way I’m sure there’s someone out there who does as well too. I’m not as original as I think I am.
Why do you say that?
Onlybyday: Because we’re all products of something, nothing comes from nothing, you can’t pull from nothing. I’m a product of my mother, father, etc. Everything I am stems from something I was exposed to so, I’m just a compilation of all these things. We all have our own essence, but it’s a community sense where you’re never alone. You’re not the only person doing what you’re doing and feeling what you’re feeling. I love finding graphic designers who are better than me. I’m not worried about people copying me, no one is copying everything is just inspiration. It’s like we’re all snowflakes unique to our own design, but we’re all still snowflakes.
What do you want the people to know?
Onlybyday: The music is coming, I’m also working on a social experiment I’ll be facilitating on social media platforms so I’m excited for that. Something inspirational: continue to dream, continue to believe in yourself, and find what you can on the inside to cultivate what you believe in and work smarter not harder.