Ryan Diaz, better known as, MusicByFortune has been climbing his way up the music industry since 2018. The 25-year-old originates from Long Island, New York and charms his listeners with melodic vocals and versatile beats.
Fortune refuses to box himself into one genre. He creates music that revolves around his emotions and life experiences. The “Never Take Your Place” singer takes inspiration from artists like Micheal Jackson, Justin Bieber, Drake, The Weeknd, and Chris Brown.
Relle Bey, is another one of Fortune’s influences, he considers the rapper his ‘brother’ and has worked with him on multiple tracks like “Keep It Real” and “Love Won’t Change.”
Fortune’s latest EP “Fortunately Rich” dropped back in August. The seven track EP showcases his range as an artist, with songs about heartbreak, money, and living it up. On Spotify, the project has over 52,000 streams and continues to grow.
“Every song kind of has its own flavor,” says that artist who aspires to create music that appeals to multiple audiences
While Fortune is grinding now, he didn’t have the easiest start in the music scene. He was reportedly scammed by his prior managers who hid money and kept him in regards to business dealings. However, the artist rose above and has learned the ins and outs of the industry. He now refers to the situation as an “L,” not because it was a loss, but because it was a lesson learned.
“I definitely know where I want to be. I know how to get there and I’m on pursuit. So you know, that’s what I’m doing.”
Fortune sat down with True Urban Culture and discussed his journey as an artist and what’s ‘next up’ in his career.
You’ve been making music since around 2018, what got you started in the industry?
I’ve always been doing music, practically my entire life. I started, you know, playing the piano when I was only five years old. I started playing the violin when I was like six or seven years old. And I’ve always loved this music, and I’ve always been fascinated with the sounds the keyboard made and just, you know, melodies. And I’ve always been pretty musically inclined, but I didn’t start actually, you know, taking it seriously, as serious, until you know, around like, I’d say 2018 is when I started making a little bit of noise … How I started doing music or really, to be completely honest was me on the computer going on these software programs and trial and error. That would probably be the best answer to the question because that’s really how I started, I started going on the computer and, you know, pulling up an instrumental on YouTube or anywhere BeatStars or anything like that … I really enjoyed what I was doing, between making music and, you know, engineering it myself. I like to mix and master my own stuff.
What was your pushing point that made you decide you could make a career out of music?
So it wasn’t until I realized that a couple of different independent labels were trying to sign me and A&Rs were like, ‘Yo, who is this guy?’ you know what I’m saying? He’s winning all these artists showcases and stuff. And you know, I’m in the building with the A&Rs in Universal Music Group, a building that not a lot of people could walk into having meetings with the executives. Talking about all this; ‘We want to push you strategically.’ ‘This is what we want to do,’ and stuff like that.
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of artists have had to adjust the way they connect with fans and create music. How has the pandemic affected your career?
I was supposed to be opening up for Young M.A, if it wasn’t for the coronavirus … The pros I would say is like more of an opportunity to digitally network, and you know, really like build relationships with people that you normally wouldn’t build a relationship with because you would have never met this person. If this person didn’t, you know, Share your video and shoot you a DM.
Since concerts have been put on hold, have you considered doing any live shows for your fans?
I’ve been thinking about doing that. I just want to make it special. When I do something, I like to go all out. And, you know, make sure that it’s the right way. So I would definitely be interested in doing that. I haven’t done it before, but it’s something that I would be interested in.
You’re featured on the song “Keep It Real” with Relle Bey and Lil TJay. The track has over 114K views on YouTube. How does that feel? That’s kind of wild.
Honestly, I was not even expecting it to pick up the traction that it did at such a fast pace … It definitely turned some heads, you know, people like, ‘how the hell does he have his thing?, How is this guy from Long Island, you know, collaborating with these platinum artists and making this happen?’ So it definitely turns some heads, definitely got some attention and definitely opened some doors for me, but I have way bigger things on the way. So that’s just some little piece of the puzzle.
For your song “Never Take Your Place” you recorded an acoustic version and created a music video for it. What was your inspiration to make it acoustic?
A lot of people really like the original, and I was planning on doing a music video to it, I still am going to do a music video to it. A lot of people say that’s the lane that they want to see me go into. It really highlights my vocals, gives you a real sense of, you know, my range, and you know, what I’m capable of doing in terms of singing.
It’s no secret that you’ve been in the studio hustling and working on new music. Can you tell us a bit about what you’ve been working on?
Right now I’m working on, “A Sinner Symphony,” which is going to be my album. Which is going to be featuring some serious, serious artists that I don’t think anybody’s ready for, honestly, I don’t think anybody’s prepared for what’s about to happen or nobody’s going to believe what’s about to happen, but like I’ve got some really big names in the works, platinum, triple platinum, I got a Lil TJay on it, I got Relle Bey on it, I got Chinx Drugz on it, I got Rich the Kid on it, and I got three more that I’m going to keep the element of surprise for it, but let’s just say that they’re bigger than all of the ones I just named.
What’s what’s going to be different about “A Sinner Symphony” compared to your other mixtapes?
The production is the main difference, “A Sinner Symphony” and “Fortunately Rich,” the main difference is the sound quality, the sound production, the beats are not “Fortunately Rich” beats, these are next level beats. You can tell, you’re going to be able to see the difference of elevation from when I was here in 2020 to here in 2021.
Do you have a release date or any kind of time window that we can be expecting “A Sinner Symphony?”
I want it out before the summer, but I don’t want to rush. I want people to be like, wow, this was worth the wait, you know?
As we’re heading towards the tail end of our interview, are there any last messages you want to get out to the audience or your fans?
Go check out my new song with Relle Bey, “Love Won’t Change” I can promise you, I can guarantee you that you listen to that song, you’re putting that in your playlist.
Is this song going to give us a hint of what we can expect on “A Sinner Symphony?”
Oh yeah, take that song and that’s probably the closest song to what the level of what the album is going to be like.
What does True Urban Culture mean to you?
The first thing that I think of when I hear those words or that name is genuine culture. You know, genuine music, this is a platform where, you know, people are going to discover or read about, or, you know, learn about upcoming artists or, you know, already artists that are established, but, yeah. It definitely makes me think about like, you know, genuine culture, maybe how music is changing a little bit, from, you know, the nineties to, you know, this decade.