By Matthew Hacke | Photograph from Gallo Locknez Photography
If there is one thing that Gallo Locknez enjoys about making music and performing, it is inspiring people through positive messages. “At all of my performances, I always have the crowd chant a positive affirmation because it’s very important to instill that kind of mentality in people,” Gallo says. The rapper and producer, who made the Pittsburgh area his home with his wife and two young daughters three years ago, writes witty and clean lyrics to convey his positive outlook on life. “I don’t curse in any of my music,” he continues. “You will never hear me cursing.”
Born in New York City and raised in Northeastern PA, Gallo’s passion for music came from his father. “My father was a jazz musician, so he was always playing music and had gigs when I was growing up. I picked up what I could, but I was a hard-headed child, though. I’m not going to lie,” he says amusingly. While Gallo’s father tried to teach him different music techniques, he really took the reins by himself. “I used to rap for fun with my brothers, but then I really taught myself how to rap and make beats. One day, I went into school with a little track I put together and everyone was like, ‘This isn’t bad!’ and my passion just took off from there.”
Gallo’s interest in rapping quickly evolved. He was signed by producer Rockwilder, who has worked with incredible artists like Michael Jackson, Beyoncé, and 50 Cent, which led to opportunities for TV placements and eventually a few rap contests. One of the most prestigious contests he won was a national hip-hop contest called “Green For All,” centered around the theme of keeping the environment clean. “When I won, I was interviewed by BET.com and was able to shoot the video for my winning single, ‘Ima Push.’”
In over five years, Gallo has turned his craft into a professional career. He has since released an album, titled March Forth, and signed a contract with the NBA to produce raps for its social media platforms after big games. His raps serve as a recap of games, with smart and informative lyrics, and many of them have already garnered millions of views on Instagram.
“I’ll watch the game, and right after it ends, I’ll write a rap re-capping it,” says Gallo, who is an avid Knicks fan himself. “Once I complete the beat and rap, I send it out to the videographer who puts it all together so that it is ready to be posted the next morning.”
There is no stopping Gallo, who is already hard at work on his next album, which is set to be released early this year, called GallosWorld. And we’re excited to see how he continues to carry out his theme of positivity and inspiration. “I have skits and experiences that I talk about in my music and how I overcame them,” he says. “When people listen to my music, I hope that they can find the same type of inspiration to overcome any obstacles or challenges they’re facing.”
Gallo Locknez, gallosworld.com.