#MusicBringsUsTogether meets J.KAS. Inspired by music heavyweights and hip-hop legends, J.KAS has made his mark as an underground rapper. He took some time out of his busy summer schedule to catch up with the KitSound team.
What was the inspiration for your latest EP Dreamlife?
There were two elements that inspired the Dreamlife EP.
One being that the producer of the whole EP is named Dreamlife, and I had the notion maybe three years ago to write and record a project that solely consisted of his beats.
The second element came from a trip I took to Lisbon, Portugal, in 2017 with a group of creative undergraduates from Leeds Beckett University called Elevate Young Minds, who were hosting an international creative exchange festival at Anjos 70, and I was invited to headline the main show. We spent a lot of time together exploring Lisbon, having fun and interacting with the locals. The energy was very good, and I took away a lot of great memories which sparked me to get some Dreamlife beats on that I had my eye on, and then I just started to get busy with my pen and before you know it, Dreamlife was complete.
Were your musical tastes influenced by anyone?
I grew up in a single parent household being the eldest of five, my mom was always playing a variety of music from reggae, northern soul, Motown, R&B, hip-hop, pop, power ballads, rock and new jack swing.
I guess my mom had a hand in influencing my taste in music. She has a great taste in music.
Where does your passion for rap music come from?
That came from listening to the likes of Snoop Dogg, Tupac, Biggie Smalls, Wu-Tang Clan, Jay-Z, Foxy Brown, Lil’ Kim, Nas and Mobb Deep. When I was younger I just thought to myself I want to do what they do.
Who are your favourite musicians?
All the above and I also like Ozuna, Bruno Mars, The Roots, Kanye West, J. Cole. Lady Leshurr, Phil Collins, Foreigner, Major Lazer, Oasis, Basement Jaxx and a load more.
If you could duet with any artist who would you choose and why?
Jay-Z because I like his flow, his style, and coolness in his approach to rapping on tracks. Plus, he’s been a favourite rapper of mine for a long time.
If you had to listen to just one song for the rest of your life, what would you choose?
Oh man, that’s a tough one. Probably Cassandra ‘Thank You’. From as early as I can remember I’ve always loved that song.
What’s been your most embarrassing onstage mishap?
There are many that I notice but fortunately for me the crowd doesn’t. It’s often the obvious technical mishaps where the microphone or music has cut out, but I just keep it moving and carry on performing until the situation has been sorted, then start again. You must keep it professional.
What advice would you give to beginners in the industry?
Work hard on whatever you choose to do and be consistent. Also, be patient. Things don’t happen overnight.
What songs do you listen to when you need motivation?
I don’t have a motivational song(s) as such. Normally a song will just pop into my head and I’ll get it on.
What one song do you wish you wrote?
Oh man now I wish I wrote ‘Tyrant’ by Kali Uchis. I really like the whole vibe of that song. It’s very slick and catchy. It’s a pleasant song to listen to anytime.