Do you want to understand the appeal of Travis Scott, there’s no better place to start than Fortnite. Fortnite was once a free video game which has evolved into it own contained universe in which million of players are spending hours a day talking to their friends and pointing r1fles to strangers.
The Travis Scott fortnite story
Travis Scott is of the few people alive who understand the particular predilections of those vast millions of young people populating Fortnite’s outstretched provinces. This April 2020, we saw scott glimpsing a different kind of opportunity, brought his live show into the game.
In a series of animated concerts he appeared in 3D, rapping in a giant shape-shifting deity who reconstituted the map to his liking. Out of all the streaming experiment tried by celebrities, it was scott who came with something that actually felt innovative.
Scott is too sly to say it outright, but it was also the presentation of a vision: a tour through the trippy fantasyland he’s curated in his mind as one of the more potent culture movers of his generation. His woozy, digitally distorted sound has already shaped an era of hip-hop, but his influence has extended beyond music and into art and fashion.
He exists as a kind of strange unicorn in the culture, someone who’s fluent in the language of the youth (mostly young men who spend a lot of money on clothes and want to turn up) but who talks very little about himself.
He is not really a lyricist. He’s mostly known for exhortations like “Straight up!” and “It’s lit!,” which functionally cut to the heart of the Travis Scott ethos. His real brilliance is in his ability to use his body and sound to create a mood, to animate powerful unconscious impulses. It’s the kind of buried inner primalness one might summon should they need to lift a car to save a child.
Travis Scott has been rapping and making his own beats since he was 13. His production is notable for injecting punk energy into icy, ambient beats culled from the chopped and screwed rap of his native Houston—all with a dash of Kid Cudi’s lo-fi vibe and Kanye’s artful grandiosity.
He was raised in his grandmother’s house in Sunnyside, a primarily Black neighborhood in southern Houston, before moving a few miles southwest to the suburbs of Missouri City with his parents. He’s from a family of musicians—it was his pops who taught him how to play the drums—and his stage name was inspired by his uncle Travis, who played bass. By high school, Scott was serious about a career in music. As his friends saved up for the latest Jordan drop, he was putting all his money into studio equipment that filled his room.
A conversation with Scott can feel like attending one of his concerts. He’s thoughtful and charming and has an incandescent presence that reveals itself in the way he speaks with the entirety of his sinewy five-foot-ten frame. His words tend to race out of his mouth in rapid, rhythmic bursts, especially when he’s excited.
His body language completely changes when there’s a beat that catches him. He knows that this one has something the other ones don’t. And when he’s coming up with melodies and rhymes, he knows when he’s caught something, because his body tells him.It’s something you have to watch to understand.