Baltimore, Basketball, and Beats
Antoine Allen, better known as rapper and entrepreneur TweezDaSwaggyGod, grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, where many people dream of “making it out.” In his interview with PositiveVibes Magazine, Tweez recounts his humble beginnings in the city and explains with genuine gratitude how his passions — basketball and music — provided him a way out. In fact, the rapper first began his professional career as a collegiate basketball player at the University of Miami. He would go on to play around the world in a professional league, but he will never forget how his freshman year of college kickstarted his music career.
As TweezDaSwaggyGod notes, basketball players frequently rely on music to inspire and invigorate them before each game, so it is no surprise that music was already an important part of Tweez’s life. But when up-and-coming music producer Don Jarvis heard Tweez’s music and met up with him in a University of Miami cafeteria, music quickly became even more important to the athlete turned artist. Impressed by the basketball player’s sound, Jarvis invited Tweez to the studio he had set up in his college dorm room. Soon, Miami’s university and party scenes were rapping along to Tweez’s songs like “Chuck Taylors & Levis” and “Party.” Following the success of such singles, Tweez released his first mixtape, titled Nutty Buddy Lifestyle.
A few years and musical “eras” later, TweezDaSwaggyGod was still playing basketball, but he was now doing so in countries like Spain and the Czech Republic. These opportunities allowed him to connect with people across the globe through his sport and, in turn, helped him further pursue a career in music; he continued to gain notoriety within the music industry. Tweez tells PositiveVibes about one night in Prague, in particular, that served as yet another defining moment in his music career.
During an arranged studio visit with a Czech music engineer, a DJ and his promoter overheard Tweez’s music. “That’s fire!” they exclaimed. They requested Tweez’s permission to play his tracks at one of their sets that night and invited him to the event. Without hesitation, Tweez sent the DJ and promoter his music and gathered some friends to join him that evening. However, before arriving at the venue, Tweez realized that his excitement was waning as he became a bit skeptical. What if this place is just some rinky-dink club?
Indeed, the venue was a club, but it was anything but “rinky-dink.” Tweez enjoyed a VIP section in a high-class lounge and was able to perform his music live to a packed audience. The energized club-goers went wild for Tweez’s music. “One more! One more! One more!” they demanded. Overwhelmed by his new devoted fans, Tweez had to leave the club early that night, but the electric feeling of oneness he had felt while performing refused to leave him.
At his next basketball practice, Tweez’s coach called him over and asked, “Swaggy” — as that was the nickname the coach had given the athlete — “are you some type of rapper or something?” The angry coach held up a newspaper picturing his star player and displaying a boldface headline: MIAMI RAPPER TWEEZ SHUTS DOWN FANCY LOUNGE. At that moment, Tweez realized he would have to make a life-changing decision. Basketball or music? That electric feeling of oneness must have told him, “Music,” because he decided not to renew his basketball contracts and instead began branding himself as a musical artist back in Miami.
After a productive year strengthening his network and establishing a unique brand called Posh Life, TweezDaSwaggyGod decided to relocate to Los Angeles. He worked quietly, telling no one of his plans; he sold items from his Miami apartment and took what little money he had earned to rent an Airbnb in L.A.’s Studio City. Though he had only “a dollar and a dream,” Tweez wasted no time getting to work in the City of Angels. He worked to make more industry connections and form his community. He attended acting classes with coaches like Iris Klein to mold himself into a well-rounded performer. In short, as Tweez says, he worked to align himself with all of his desires.
Four years later, the rapper still resides in Los Angeles, where he has released two albums and numerous singles. He continues to make music while also pursuing other creative avenues such as acting and capitalizing on opportunities to build his Posh Life business. Posh Life comprises several different entities, including Posh Life Entertainment, under which Tweez manages Yahmerrr Records and a team of producers, songwriters, photographers, and other creatives. Tweez has also developed Posh Life Shop, which markets fitness and athletic apparel because the ideas of healthy competition and an active lifestyle remain central to his post-basketball career.
Motivation, Mental Health, and More Media
When expressing his goals as a rapper, TweezDaSwaggyGod emphasizes that he wants to set an example for his son and all youths, an example that he himself did not have when he was a young man in Baltimore. “[This dream] is bigger than me. I understand that,” Tweez remarks. With that in mind, the rapper also wants his music to truly inspire people, similar to how he felt during his pre-game jam sessions. He wants listeners to experience a sense of oneness, something like what he experienced in the Czech Republic. He adds that he wants to take people on a feel-good, motivational journey through his lyrics. Tweez knows this to be his ultimate purpose. After all, Tweez tells PositiveVibes that he has “God” in his stage name precisely because he believes that a part of Him lives in everyone, and he hopes his music guides others to that love and light in themselves.
As TweezDaSwaggyGod works consistently to gain the necessary exposure to spread his positive messages to a broader audience, he also works to look after his mental health and others’ mental health where he can. “Life isn’t perfect,” he says, “and we’re going to have these battles and these struggles within ourselves.” Can you continue on? Are you strong enough? Will you make it out of this dark place? Tweez says yes. It is all about “telling yourself that you can. That you are. That you will.”
TweezDaSwaggyGod cites pioneering rapper Snoop Dogg and authentic lyricist Kid Cudi as two of his inspirations. Those who seek music somewhat similar to these artists’ works yet certainly unique in its uplifting energy — those who seek what Tweez terms “elegant rap” — can listen to songs from his most recent album Spirit Animal, such as “No More Pain,” “Last Draw,” “Don’t Stop,” “King,” and “No Problems.” More of Tweez’s singles and albums are available on various streaming platforms. Anyone interested should also be sure to follow Tweez’s journey on social media platforms such as his personal, clothing, and training Instagram accounts. We can all expect to hear much more about the rapper in the near future, as he intends to release even more music and to expand his reach by visiting schools to deliver speeches that motivate the younger generation.