Hailing from Atlanta, 26-year-old Pure Colors is emerging on the scene as a talented and youthful face for future funk out East. With clutch collaborations such as Flamingosis and Engelwood now logged into his discography, there is only upside remaining for this developing musician. By reconstructing 70s funk and disco, Pure Colors hopes to tastefully rebrand the grooviest music in world history to show young listeners the roots of today’s sound. From funky features to modern buildups, Pure Colors is providing top-quality electronic music in a historically refreshing way. On Sept. 27, Pure Colors released “Chromafunk,” his first full-length project in a debut that defines what it means to stay true to artistic style while still being unique.
I sat down with Pure Colors to learn more about his story, “Chromafunk,” and some of his collaborations with elite-tier producers.
Tell me about your history with music. What got you going and how did you eventually shift into electronic production?
I started out with music in fourth grade when my mom wanted me to start taking piano lessons. I think a lot of parents push lessons on young kids because they want them to be creative. While I didn’t really enjoy the lessons, I knew that I liked music. Then, in sixth grade, we all got to choose our own instruments, and all of the boys, including me, wanted to try out for the percussion section. Luckily I got into percussion, and that set the stage for everything else. I had great teachers, and I really have to credit my ability and passion today to all of my teachers along with way.
How would you describe your genre?
That’s a tough one. I have so many influences that I love. Artists that are at the top of my mind are Vanilla and Flamingosis. I used to be more into the Pretty Lights style of electro-soul, but I’ve moved closer toward making less electronic-focused music these days. It’s hard to classify my genre because I blend a lot of different styles together like funk, soul, disco, house, and jazz. If I had to pick a genre, I would say the closest one is “Future Funk.”
The whole idea with the album “Chromafunk” was to let people know what I consider my style to be. I wanted the project to be the emergence of my style, so I used a play on my alias, Pure Colors, for the album title. That’s the genre that I’ve coined, I guess. It’s fun to make music and not worry about what you’re writing or what people are going to call it. Being lumped in a genre feels like being boxed in, stylistically.
Tell me about “Chromafunk.” Is there a story behind the album?
I think I was just ready to put out a body of work that I was proud of and thought flowed well from start to finish. Pretty much every song on that album was sampled, and that was on purpose. I wanted to take hits from the past, ones that aren’t super well known, and revamp them. I just love funk, soul, and disco from the 70s and 80s and I wanted to breathe new life into them. That’s the story behind the album and what the cover art reflects: stepping into a portal and being transported back in time — with a twist.
You worked with some big names for this project. What was it like to collaborate with the elite artists within your subgenre?
Yeah, I was so stoked. I didn’t know if any of them would be in town to collab with me. I still am a smaller artist, especially compared to those guys who have been in this game for a while. After months of reaching out and forming a genuine relationship over Instagram, I started to pitch the idea of working with them. Piece by piece we worked on the collabs. I’ve never worked on a collab until this year, and then I put out like four or five tracks with other people. It’s just so much more fun that way. It’s important to make friends with people like you and it’s important to be okay with other people touching your track.
What’s next for Pure Colors?
Right now, working on some new collabs. Englewood hit me up yesterday wanting to do some more work, which is great. It’s cool to be on the flip side of the coin. I’ve now had more producers hit me up to collaborate, and that didn’t really happen until “Chromafunk” came out. Other than that, I’m working on a new project where I’m really trying to hone in on the change of season. I think the direction and emotion behind creating is cyclical, so I’m working on a more downtempo and emotionally driven kind of sound for this project just to switch it up.
Last thing, how did you become Pure Colors? What does your name mean?
I really don’t know how I landed on the name. Well, actually, I was bouncing around ideas with another producer friend of mine. I found myself describing music to him and other friends as songs that have a bunch of different “colors,” meaning layers and elements. That’s the kind of music that I love and the kind of music I wanted to write. Something that you can listen to over and over and still hear something new because there are a lot of textures and layers in the mix. But whether exposed or subdued, the various colors are still there and contribute to the final product.
Note: Interview answers are slightly edited for clarity.