After studying under some of the biggest icons in hip-hop, Josh Stone boasts an undeniable pedigree. This hockey prodigy-turned-rapper body checks haters while encouraging you to be your best on ‘Raised To Be A Winner.’
“Smell that? That’s that drive, that hunger, the hunger to get the money. Authenticity,” raps Josh Stone before sliding into his “new flow” on “Raised To Be A Winner.” In the track, premiering here on HollywoodLife, the protégé of Public Enemy‘s legendary MC Chuck D introduces listeners to “the next big thing” while giving a shout out to all the people who helped him so far. NYC’s Maino joins in to drops some bars, revealing how his city also “raised [him] to not lose,” before Josh takes the song home. While this track — with its infectious groove and electric flow — is specific to Josh’s journey, he tells HollywoodLife that the new song also aims to hype up listeners so that they can be winners, too.
” ‘Raised 2 Be A Winner’ is meant to be a motivational hook to reach your greatest potential,” Josh tells HollywoodLife. “The song reflects my personal story and journey in life and in the music industry. I wanted to get Maino on the record because he knows all about the haters and about tough times and overcoming adversity. Maino and I come from different experiences, but at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter where you come from. It’s about perspective and how you deal with everything that comes your way – the good and the bad.”
So, who is this muscular MC manning the mic? “I grew up in the suburbs of New York, and was on the path to becoming one of hockey’s next superstars,” said Josh in a video detailing his journey. “I had a career-ending injury, and my world came to a screeching halt. It felt like my life was over. On top of my injury, my grandfather passed away, my best friend was killed crashing a motorcycle, and a family friend was shot and killed. I was in a very dark and depressed place. So, I began writing poetry.”
While finding his voice in this moment of darkness, Josh began working on what would become his music career. “I picked up a Macbook Pro, started making three beats a day, and it changed my life.” A chance meeting with Violator Management on the set of the 2009 Biggie Smalls biopic Notorious would kick off Josh’s rap career. For the last 9+ years, Josh has been studying the game while working for Sony RCA/Blueprint and A&R Maverick Management. With that knowledge, he’s launched his own label Real Vibez Only Inc. and has carved his path in the rap world with his distinct originality.
While he’s been “Raised To Be A Winner,” don’t expect Josh to rest easy while taking a victory lap. His 2020 is going to be huge, with three more releases – “Napalm,” “Ruthless,” “Wounds & Cuts,” and a single with Snoop Dogg – on the way.