Tia Bank$ is focused on her work. She’s excited and ready to take the next steps in her career, as she preps for an Ontario-based tour and gears up towards taking the stage at Canada’s inaugural Rolling Loud festival in Toronto later this year. Her new EP Money Talks is a pivotal moment, which will affirm whether or not she’s been making the right moves. The EP is the culmination of years of putting in work towards the “grind.” While this year’s single “Pop Shit” proved she was a force to be reckoned with, can she keep up the momentum?
Throughout Money Talks, Bank$ lauds the virtue of being an independent woman. A hustler with the Gary Vee mentality, she’s bursting with energy as she’s ready to get to work and punch in. For the record’s intro, she decides to bar up, keeping up a long-standing tradition on “No Hook.” “All it took was hard work and dedication,” she raps.
As the saying goes, it takes ten years to become an overnight success—and her accomplishments so far are a by-product of putting in her 10,000 hours. The Scarborough emcee is often braggadocious on songs like “We Gettin Rich” and “Pop Shit” that manifest her success, but the choice to include “Thankful” also demonstrates her more vulnerable and down-to-earth sides as well.
At one point on the EP, Bank$ opens up about putting her career over personal relationships. “Focusing on my career right now is my choice. Right now, I’m in my element and in my zone. I don’t want to mess it up and keep going until I reach the goal I want to reach at,” Tia Bank$ tells Complex Canada.
Money Talks meant getting busy. It’s put up or shut up—because after all, money talks. Tia Bank$ sat down with us to talk money, her new EP, and where she’s headed next.
(This interview has been edited for conciseness and clarity.)
What has it been like since the release of “Pop Shit” ?
It’s been crazy. I’ve gotten new listeners, new supporters. I hosted a couple more clubs. I did some more performances [and] I’m on the bill for a big performance, Rolling Loud… the one coming to Toronto.
Tell me about this EP. How did it all come together?
Some of the songs, two of them, came out last year. “Hard” and “Thankful” was released last year. But we released recently “Pop Shit” top of the year and “We Gettin Rich,” and honestly all those songs together just really tell a story of my journey. And I’m all about my journey. I love to tap into that and tap into my struggles. Tap into what’s relatable.
Talk to me a bit about the production. It feels very bouncy, almost reminiscent of an early 2000s record.
I’m very old-school influenced. My favourite rappers are Nick Minaj, 50 Cent, and Jay-Z. A couple of those beats have the old school vibe. I think “Whateva I Want” makes me feel like back in the day type of rap. Like something that maybe Remy and Lil Kim would’ve gotten on or maybe even 50 Cent. “Hard” was a 50 Cent reference.
I personally wanted to keep it up-tempo. But then we have the slow song. You can hear the bars, but you also feel like you can turn up to the song.
I found it really interesting that “5 Star” samples “I Got 5 On It by Luniz” for a female hustler anthem. Talk to me about that choice.
When I first heard the beat, T-Nyce already had the sample. I wanted to pay homage to the original version but make it more for the shortys, and the girls can feel like, ‘This is for me.’
You chose to do a “No Hook” intro. Tell me a bit about that.
Originally, I wrote a certain type of song and Nyce was like, “Nah I kind of hear something different for it” and he had to pick my brain a little bit. Then we realized this song doesn’t even need a hook. We give them bars and I’m talking to the listeners. You can really hear me spit some shit on that. The purpose for that beat, we didn’t want to make it a song-song like that. We just wanted it from start to finish—go.
What can people expect from you next?
We’re going on tour for the next couple of months leading up to Rolling Loud and they can also expect another side to the EP. This is just the teaser side, and then we’re going to drop another one later this fall. Money Talks is side A, then there’s going to be a side B. This side is harder and aggressive and showing my skills. The second side is going to be the freer side of me. You’re going to hear a completely different sound.