Portland's Donte Thomas invites fans to listen in color

Marmoset artist, Donte Thomas — photography Reclusive Images

Marmoset artist, Donte Thomas — photography Reclusive Images


Portland, Oregon artist Donte Thomas has been coined the hip-hop artist to keep up with. Debuting his latest album COLORS under Produce Organic Records label and in partnership with EYRST, Thomas applies a colorful spectrum to the album’s theme, each song marked by a specific hue.

“Each song was chosen through chromesthesia,” says Thomas. “It was all about how each made me feel. The concept comes into play with my concept.”

The science behind chromesthesia signifies the sensation of relating sound to color — it’s a surreal experience for some, the triggering of visual elements when hearing a certain kind of sound, pitch, timbre or tone. But for listeners experiencing Thomas’ COLORS, it’s an invitation to let each song sink in a bit further, allowing the album to resonate with one’s own sensory perceptions. 

For the NE Portland hip-hop artist, the construction of COLORS was designed to feel fully dynamic, Thomas adopting the spectrum as a visual map for his imagination and internal processing. Dubbed by color, listeners begin to search within the elements of each song to see how it all connects — it’s a creative game of observing what ties the lyrics, the emotions of the song’s tone, the energy and rhythm together.

When asked about executing COLORS, Thomas imparts this piece of advice to aspiring artists.

“We recorded over 50 songs for the album, so I not only chose my favorites, but the ones that would sound the best in a cohesive body of work,” says Thomas. “Try everything you can think of because you never know — it might sound cool once you lay it down! Being skeptical about how you sound or about melody might be what hinders you from creating your best art.Never be afraid to try new things.”

Posted on September 26, 2019 and filed under Artist Spotlights, Marmoset, Music, Music Licensing, Spotlight: Artists.