Be Strikingly Different

Rapper Bakes Talks Divine Timing and Being Strikingly Different

Rapper Bakes hit the ground running in 2016 when he released his debut single “On My Mind” which lead to being a fan-favorite of the Z90.3FM radio contest garnering traction in the San Diego music scene. Soon after, Bakes began releasing collaborations with various artists and opened for Billboard chart-topping artists.

In 2020, Bakes released his EP Hologram as well as his single “Divine Timing,” from his EP Trust Yourself, which showcases a more mature side to the artist.

We had a chance to speak with Bakes about what he’s been up to and you can see that conversation below.

Photography by Xena Peterson
Production by Irma Penunuri of BurgerRock Media
Styling by Ivan Poshenko
Styling Assistant Emily Alvarez


Walk me through the meaning behind Divine Timing and the message behind it. Divine Timing is about noticing different synchronicities in my life on my path as an artist. Meaningful coincidences that assure me I’m in the right place doing the right things, and that my destiny is unfolding for me. The message is trust your intuition; as long as your intentions are in the right place, everything will happen exactly when it’s supposed to.

What is the story or theme for your new EP “From The Ground Up?” My new album “From the Ground Up” touches on parts of my story and mindset as an independent, self-managed artist. It is themed around building up my career and learning every aspect of the industry, laying my foundation to build upon in music and business. It displays my entrepreneurial spirit, taking it upon myself to make things happen and not waiting for anybody to help me. Doing what it takes to succeed, putting in the work, and growing consciously as a person. It displays my versatility as it is a full, 14-song project, and affirms the notion that you can create your own reality.

Photography by Xena Peterson
Production by Irma Penunuri of BurgerRock Media
Styling by Ivan Poshenko
Styling Assistant Emily Alvarez


Where does your passion for music come from? My passion comes from the feeling. Music has the power to make you feel so many different ways and accentuate emotions, not only from sound frequencies but also from the way certain lyrics resonate. In my area of songwriting and performing, I am fueled by the lyrical content and flow. I strive to be witty, intelligent, and wise in my writing. Making music allows me to share my light and gift with people, and I treat my songs as affirmations with the messages I put out into the world.

What do you want your music to be known for? What’s the legacy you want to leave behind? I want my music to be known for providing an optimistic outlook on life, inspiring the thinkers, and being a positive influence on the younger generation. The legacy I want to leave behind is being someone who followed their dreams, had full faith in their purpose, and spread uplifting vibes through knowledge of self.

What’s your philosophy in life? My philosophy in life is to meet the Universe halfway. If it is to be, then it’s up to me. I believe your frequency will determine your reality; you don’t attract what you want, you attract what you are. I live in my purpose, stay present, visualize my future, seek balance, and keep love in my heart.

The world is in a re-set moment culturally, racially and in so many other ways. How are you playing your part in highlighting and being a part of this change as an artist? I’ve taken this time to refocus and assess my career trajectory as far as what I want to be known for. I’ve always been a lyrical artist, but this year I’ve fully stepped into making music that fully reflects who I am as a person. I have upcoming songs that touch on current events and my overall observations, but I try not to get too political because my goal is to unite rather than divide. So, I’m focusing more on the bigger picture, thought-provoking ideas, and philosophies.

Photography by Xena Peterson
Production by Irma Penunuri of BurgerRock Media
Styling by Ivan Poshenko
Styling Assistant Emily Alvarez



Are there any projects you can tell us about? I already have my next project written; it’s looking to be between 6-8 songs, and sonically will be a bit different than my newest album, “From the Ground Up”. It brings back the style of soul sample hip-hop beats, kind of like that old Kanye aesthetic, but modern with my ideas and topics. Then I have a few EP’s lined up after that with different producers, all unique in sound, so it will be a consistent year.

The definition of Contrast is ‘to be strikingly different.’ What makes you strikingly different? What makes me strikingly different is my mindset, my loyalty to who I am and not changing who I am or what I stand for just to fit in with what’s ‘popular’ in the industry. My style of music essentially manifests greatness and is relatable for everyone, and I always present it with a fresh style.

Photography by Xena Peterson
Production by Irma Penunuri of BurgerRock Media
Styling by Ivan Poshenko
Styling Assistant Emily Alvarez

Editor-in-Chief, Contrast.