MJ Interview - 10 Questions Music Interview
Updated: 5 days ago
Female rapper MJ was born in Redondo Beach, Ca but raised in Pensacola, FL. She began her musical journey in 2011, spitting freestyles on Odd Future Wolf Gang tracks. n 2014, she released her debut album, Live Through Me. After relocating to Houston, TX she followed up with a mixtape titled "MEEZUS". The artist is inspired by both the hard-hitting style of Southern rap and the smoothness of soul. A great way to get acquainted with MJ's undeniable talent is to check out her song, "Houston Strong."
Was there something (an experience) or someone in your life that was the "catalyst" for you to start writing music? Tell us about it.
When I graduated from high school, I was still that awkward teen dealing with self esteem issues trying to find myself. I was always playing it safe. My mother instilled in me to major in Computer Programming, so I did what I thought she wanted me to do. But in my sophomore year, I grew frustrated with learning complicated as hell Java coding and still dealing with self esteem issues. And after breaking down in tears in front of Hatter fountain at Stetson University, I decided to finally take a risk and do something different for a change. Something that I had been dreaming about. Putting a voice to my poetry on dope ass beats.
Let's get this out of the way. What is the CRAZIEST thing that has ever happened to you in your music career?
Haven't had any super crazy experiences...yet. Closest is Jharrel Jerome (the Emmy winning actor from "When They See Us") showing my music love on Twitter.
What has been the high point of your music path?
Highest point has been going through artist development with more established local talent. I've been blessed with the opportunity to take my career to the next level. Houston is full of potential that the industry is just now finally tapping into. Working with other music artists and learning how sound and the industry works has been such a blessing for me.
So, how do you approach songwriting or what is your creative process like?
Honestly, I write a song when something comes to mind. I can go long periods with writer's block, then there are times when I can write 3-5 songs in one week. Certain things inspire me. Especially when I hear a beat in my head. I've been wanting to co produce my own records as well. Like a Missy Elliot.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Indie Artists today? Or, if you could ask the music industry to change one thing, what would it be?
The biggest challenge is the battle between funding and control. When you are an Indie Artist, you have to be willing to invest in yourself. In the immortal words of Pops, you win some. You lose some. I'm still going through that challenge. To fund yourself without the backing of a major label. Getting to the point where you do what you love and earn a living off of it. The industry needs to figure out a balance where money doesn't automatically equal an artist losing their musical identity.
If you could share the stage with one other artist or band, who would it be and why?
Gosh, there are so many. I've been wanting to do a performance with Kendrick Lamar. To me, he is the best rapper of our current generation. I want to be the female equivalent to him in terms of talent, versatility, and performance. So he would definitely be one I would love sharing the stage with.
What are your rehearsals generally like? Or, how do you prepare for a live show?
This is going to sound crazy, but I've only recently began performing live. It's a task that I'm taking on by myself. I practice by myself and am working on becoming more comfortable on stage. Loosening up some. Shaking off the nervousness.
Pick one song that was your greatest challenge to write. Tell us about it!
"From the 832" because it dealt with my grandmother's death. It is on my mixtape "MEEZUS". It was difficult putting into words my feelings and emotions during that stage in my life. I collaborated with A&R producer BGemini. For the very first time, I collaborated with someone in the industry on the Hip Hop side of things. I had to learn how the industry sound works without sacrificing my personal creative input. So that added to the experience as well.
What's coming up in the future?
There will be open mics and live venues. In addition, I'm in the process of finishing an EP. I've been through ups and downs and got stagnated. Been working on this project for nearly two years. But still I push forward! More new music is coming! I am ready to show the world that I deserve to be in the stars.
Tell us where fans can access your music?
Currently my music is on Soundcloud and I post snippets and freestyles on my Instagram. I will be on major streaming platforms soon.
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