In Talks With South East London’s Ascending Emcee J-Racks
15 Feb 2021
Hailing from South East London is the rising rapper J-Racks that has caught the eyes of many of your favourite rappers including M1llionz, Ivorian Doll and more! Following on from a string of singles last year, the London native first discovered his love for music when he began free-styling alongside his friends in school. Since then, J-Racks has been putting in the time to not only perfect his craft but generate a sound that sets him apart from the rest. Having released what’s arguably one of his most prominent songs to date “FREE FLOW” at the latter end of last year, J-Racks is gearing up for yet another successful year with a fresh batch of heat for us to indulge in!
We caught up with J-Racks over the phone and spoke all things music and more. Tap in below to see what he had to say!
How have you been? How have you found this pandemic?
To be honest I would say it’s given me more time to focus on the music, in the meantime I’ve learnt how to produce on tracks, so yeah, it’s given me more time to focus!
Oh cool, so you produce your own music now?
Yeah! Well, I’m learning to!
For those who aren’t aware of you or your music, could you tell us a bit more about your upbringing in South East London and how you were introduced to music?
I would say it probably started when I was freestyling around my friends, I would always be that person to get a good reaction and I went off of that and began taking it more seriously.
What kind of beats were you freestyling on?
Back then, it was more American type Rap beats because the UK wasn’t really doing much other than Grime and I wasn’t really jumping on Grime beats back then. I was listening to the little UK Rap that we had at the time with artists like Giggs, Krept & Konan and Cashh.
We’re there any artists that you looked up to at all. I know you just mentioned Giggs etc, but we’re there any that helped influence or shape your sound?
Not that I can point out! I would say that the people that I listened to did influence it to an extent, but I couldn’t name one artist that had a big influence on the sound that I am producing now.
You dropped a string of singles last year one of which was “FREE FLOW”, tell us a bit more about this came about! It’s gained some god attention!
I’m a big fan of the UK music scene, the idea was to pay homage to all the good things that are happening in the UK Drill scene right now. There are so many sick artists that are doing there thing at the moment, if 20-minute tracks were a normal thing I would have impersonated every single Drill artist on it but I just picked a selective few instead. I wanted to pay homage by using there flows and music video references and incorporate it all into one song.
Was one of them Unknown T?
Yeah! I gave him the hook because his was the catchiest I felt, so you hear him twice on it because it was wavy!
Yeah! I thought it sounded like him when I listened to it!
Yeah, when you watch the video it makes sense! There are 5 different artist references in the video, it’s got M1llionz “Y PREE” in there as well.
Did you take full creative direction on that?
Yeah! I had an idea for the video once I had made the track and I had a production company called OG Power Media and a director called JA who helped bring my vision to life because I don’t use the camera! We came together and got that done!
I picked up on one bar in “FREE FLOW” that made me giggle, it said – “And when I hit that with my hand / It’s nice and smooth like chocolate mousse” *laughs* What’s your favourite dessert?
*laughs* Oh! Apple Crumble and custard – not a lot of apple though!
Do you ever plan to reach out and explore different sub-genres or sounds in the future?
Definitely! I didn’t start off on Drill beats, if there’s a sound that I like that I think I would sound sick on I would definitely go for it. Right now, I am happy with the sound that I am putting out so in the future that is probably what you will hear from me.
I know it’s hard to say unless you plan that far ahead but where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Yeah as you said its very difficult and I wouldn’t want to pin-point a position but as long as I have kept it consistent, stayed real and true to myself and to the people that are supporting me along that period, when we get to those 5 years I’ll be happy with whatever position I am in.
What else can we expect to see from you this coming year? I read that you want to assert yourself as an artist and drop loads of music.
Yeah! Over the last few years, I haven’t actually done that and consistently put something out and that came down to their never being a sound that I was happy with and felt comfortable on. Now I’ve found a sound that I’m happy with, this year is just going to be a surge of new music, more videos and stuff!