Curtis Huynh

FrancisGotHeat: I never really had a plan, I just picked up my bags and left

Taken by Curtis Huynh

This week on The Come Up Show Podcast we talked to FrancisGotHeat. He is a producer from Toronto who has production credits with local talents like Roy Wood$ and Anders. He has also worked with Ab-Soul, Bryson Tiller, Isaiah Rashad and produced “4422” on Drake’s More Life featuring Sampha.

We talked about his come up, and how patience for an up-and-coming producer is much harder to come by. “I just knew I was always one track away,” Francis told Chedo. “I’m still kind of one track away… [and I thought] I’m so close, I can’t stop now.”

Francis also told us the challenges of convincing his parents to let him pursue music as a young teenager, and so much more. Below is an excerpt from our talk, play the podcast to hear more.

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Carrying a desktop computer in his suitcase from downtown to Sauga via TTC (19:30)

Francis: The first day [worked with John River] I went all the way to saga like I didn’t have a laptop at this point so I was carrying  my desktop

Chedo: What?!

Francis: Yeah, the tower and I had to bring my own monitor too

Chedo: And was it a flat screen or one of those big screens?

Francis: It was like a flat screen, like a  24 inch or whatever

Chedo: and how did you carry that from…  do you live downtown?

Francis: Yeah I live like in Toronto, not downtown but… sometimes [John River’s] manager picked me up, but other times we linked up I packed all the sh** in a suitcase, I put the tower and the screen in the suitcase and I take the TTC to [Mississauga].

Chedo: When you’re doing that, at the moment are you complaining…?

Francis: No, I’m like yeah I want to do this because I want to work with this guy to do something special, you know what I mean?

The challenges of convincing his parents to let him do music (25:35)

Francis: At a certain point they didn’t think this was a real career. To them, they think I’m on the computer it’s just a hobby. they wanted me to go to school. They are very strict, they want like 80s, 90s or whatever. I would get 80s and 70s, they don’t like 70s but I just kept getting them because I didn’t really care. They always said you have to go to school and do well. This one year I almost failed math, and they wanted to get me a tutor, but I didn’t really care because I already knew I’m not going to school.

Chedo: What period is this?

Francis: Like grade 10 or 11… You had to do university applications in grade 12 and when that time came around I didn’t apply anywhere. [My parents] were like what are you doing? What is happening with your life? So I told them I’m taking a year off.

Chedo: Wow, smart strategy

Francis: Then I did it, I took a year off. Technically I went to Humber for like a week, just to get the student card so my mom would get off my back.

Chedo: So you applied to Humber for what program?

Francis: I don’t even know like general arts and science… whatever was easy, I just wanted a student card. I got that just so my mom could stop telling me to go back to school then I flew to LA after two weeks of the program.

I had to learn to be patient (50:55)

Francis: I knew that my time was coming but I couldn’t wait for it. I  had to learn to be very patient. A lot of times I would be venting to my friends [saying]  I’m working so hard, and this guy made it, that guy made it, how come I’m not making it? I swear I’m like better or whatever…Everyone has their time, you just have to wait for your time to come. Right now is kind of my time, I’m on the come up, people like listening to my stuff so I’m very happy to be where I am.  I waited all this time and I’m finally getting there.

Chedo: But in those moments you were impatient.

Francis: There was a lot of frustration. I’ve been doing this for so long and I’m not getting anywhere, no one is picking up my beats, I’m trying to send it to everybody, [and wondering] why am I not getting picked.

Chedo: And what kept you going?

Francis: Knowing that I was getting close. I just knew like I was always one track away, I’m still kind of one track away, but like my mentality was like yo I’m so close I can’t stop now.