Jurassic Joy: Local hip-hop artist King Dylan spreads good vibes, environmental activism, and a love of dinosaurs, with his upcoming album To the Ones Who Let Go

As Dylan Roberts (a.k.a. King Dylan) journeys further into his music career, he has now found a way to not only share his songs, but to give back to the environment. 

For the release of his new vinyl album To the Ones Who Let Go, and to offset the environmental impact of the manufacturing resources and process, Dylan has partnered with an organization called One Tree Planted. Every time a listener purchases his most recent album or for everyone who contributed to his fundraising campaign in order to get the record made, a tree has and will be planted on their behalf.  

“It’d be cool to plant trees in people’s names, and then people who donated can all have a thank-you certificate that says they helped plant trees,” says Dylan. “I was able to plant 300 trees in total. I was happy to have all these trees planted especially with all the forest fires.” 

Music has always been a part of Dylan’s life. Since childhood he’s been playing the piano, then in high school he formed a band with some friends. Afterwards he was also involved in a rock band for five years. Clearly music plays an important role in pursuing his passions. 

“I started writing rap music while trying to make beats with my tape recorder and tape cassette. Eventually I bought a keyboard and made beats and music. Then found some friends in high school to rap with and we made music for years.”

However, music isn’t Dylan’s only passion since childhood — he also has a great fascination with dinosaurs, since watching Jurassic Park growing up. Two decades into making music, Dylan thought it would be a good idea to combine his two passions. Therefore, he made a rap song about dinosaurs, So Awesome, that’s featured on the new record and was released as a video on June 11 — exactly 28 years from the theatrical release of the original Jurassic Park film. 

“Rap music and dinosaurs were never in conjunction with each other. I always avoided it. And I wanted to be taken seriously as a musician,” he says. 

“But after 20 years of making music, I might as well make a song about dinosaurs since it’s a bit more humorous in a rap style. And with everything going on in the world, I thought it was the perfect timing.” 

The song came out of an exercise he undertook a year ago. Dylan participated in a writing challenge, where he wrote songs for eight hours straight, and this was how he created To the Ones Who Let Go releasing Sept. 17. 

“The challenge was to write and record from start to finish off in eight hours like a regular workday. The album was the result of that. I learnt how to push myself to go with the flow rather than overthinking everything — I was pretty happy with how everything turned out.”

While Dylan truly enjoyed the adventure of making this album, the joy he experienced and his appreciation for his listeners is the message he most wants to share. 

“I don’t really have a huge statement about the album but that I’m thankful (for) everyone who is listening. And for the fundraising campaign, it’s special. I want to stay busy and continue putting out new music and videos. Hopefully this is my way of showing them that I appreciate their support.”

“I hope to stay happy making music because there’s been a lot of ups and downs. My goal is to never stop enjoying my passion for music.”