Jay King (Jamil Paris) was born and raised in Gifford, Florida in the Victory Park Apartments. At a young age, King realized that he had exceptional writing abilities and writing poetry was a favorite past time. Artists such as Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Trick Daddy, and 2 Pac, have inspired Jay. Music has always been his passion yet he found an outlet to a better life through football. Jamil Paris (Jay King) committed to the University of Kentucky to play college football in 2006. King’s athletic ability provided a means to escape a world of poverty and drugs to pursue a higher education. He swore to use the opportunity to later become a vessel that would reach back to his community and provide some type of assistance. After just two seasons with the Wildcats, King faced a career ending heart surgery. With a newly born son on the way King made a decision to not accept his downfall but to use it as a stepping-stone for something greater. He then decided to pursue a music career, rather than turning back to the life he strived so hard to escape. After recording his first studio recording ever “Area Codes” he submitted the track to Slipnslide Records A&R Otha “Vakseen” Davis III, who immediately entered Jay King into the Slipnslide On Da Grind contest for upcoming artist (November 2, 2009). From that point on Jay King realized that music could be the platform he needed to put him back on the road to success. With relentless ambition and unshakeable persistence King made a lifetime goal to become one of the greatest artist to ever make music. Follow Jay King on his journey to change the world through music.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What city and state are you from?
JAY KING: I was born and raised in Gifford, Florida.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What is your musical background?
JAY KING: My musical background actually began as poetry. I began writing poetry in elementary and continued up until high school. My mom always loved music so I grew up listening to her play Big and Tupac. That love of music was instilled in me from a very early age. I’ve always had a way with words, but I didn’t develop the confidence to speak it out loud until around 15 years old when I lost my cousin to a heart condition. I was really influenced by my cousin and he used to record music in his room on his laptop. His music lived on even after he was gone. I believe the creation of music became apart of me at that point.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your songs about?
JAY KING: My music is about my experience growing up in Gifford. My father was considered a “prominent” drug dealer so I was exposed to a lot of things at a very early age. I was able to see first hand and experience the money, cars, and other things that come with that life. Him being my father and naturally my role model, I of course wanted that experience for myself so I became involved around the age of 12. The streets taught me how to hustle. Seeing my mother struggle as a single parent gave me that drive. Going to college showed me that a whole new world and level is attainable. So my music is very centered in the streets, but it has a context of, this is where I am now. Yes I was in the streets, but here is another way out.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What is your favorite song to perform and why?
JAY KING: My favorite song to perform is “All I Know”. It is a track about my experiences in the streets. It has a 90’s feel to it. I’m very influenced by 90’s rap and the message and experiences behind that era. So when I wrote “All I Know” I wanted to speak from the heart. I wanted to create something relatable, where people who’ve experienced what I’ve experienced can feel. My favorite part of the song is in the second verse where I say, “I’m a grind like the rent due, made it through the storm and the bullshit he been through, heard they gave him 20 years and they know it wasn’t his, took a bid for a fall that he didn’t do, kept it real he ain’t telling, he a two time felon, if he take that shit to trial, they gone give him life, so he gotta do his bid, might not never see his kids, that’s the price you gotta give, when you dealing white”. That speaks on relatable life. My fans love my music because it’s not all about Maybachs that they may never be able to afford. I speak on reality. My music has meaning. It is real hip hop.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What has surprised you the most in the pursuit of a career in music?
JAY KING: I’m surprised most by the state that music is in today. I believe that because of the whole era of pirating and the decrease in record sales, labels and A&Rs have become lazy. As I’ve said before the 90’s influenced me. Today it’s not about talent. When you speak on the art of music how it once was songs like “Brenda’s got a baby”, had a message behind it. Music stood for something then. Today labels and A&Rs look for the catchiest talent to endorse for a quick profit. The artist could have no lyric ability at all but if the chorus is catchy then it’s considered a hit. I believe artist like Jay Z, Eminem and Nas have longevity because they’re music has meaning. People still value talent in music. That’s the difference between platinum artist and quick single producing artist that fade away in a couple years. I honestly believe that my music will change the landscape of music today. Artist will no longer be able to hide behind a catchy chorus. The fans will demand and pay for my music because it will be of the highest quality every time. I will bring meaning back to music.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: Who are your musical influences?
JAY KING: When it comes to music Tupac influenced me. Tupac once said “I’m not saying I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.” Music was not only about the money and cars with Pac. He had a voice that stood for something. His music had purpose. When I make music every bar is critiqued over and over by me because I owe it to music to create something meaningful. As an artist we are role models. We can influence society with words. We create a form of art that can live forever. My goal isn’t to get on. I truly believe I can be one of the greatest rappers ever. I owe it to Pac who paved that road for me to produce the best music this world has ever seen and I will do that.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How would you describe your music to people?
JAY KING: I would say my music is real. When you listen to Jay King you should expect some of the best lyrical material you have ever heard mixed with some of the best up and coming new producers in the game. Every song has a different feel and life to it. It’s rare for an artist to create songs that will have that same affect when it’s heard 5 or 10 years from now. I believe Pac and Big created that type of music. I’m striving to be on that level.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What makes you stand out from other artist?
JAY KING: My music has it’s own identity. I don’t follow trends I’m a King I set them. I don’t need to stoop to their level of artistry because what I create is on another level. It’s different yet it’s rap in its purest form. I don’t create songs I create classics. I believe in the craft of music so I look for different sounds and tempos. I’m able to adapt to the beat so every song has a different flow. Some artist you listen to sound and say the same thing on every song. I strive to take it to the next level with each new song. I’m still a rookie though so I’m excited about where my music will be when I hit my prime.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What would you like to see changed in today’s music industry?
JAY KING: I’d like to see A&Rs be A&Rs and DJs be DJs again. Go out and diligently look for new talent. DJs support local independent artist because you like their music not because they pay you thousands of dollars for spins. Today music has become lazy and only seeks to find what’s trending at the moment. Music was at its best and album sales were at their highest in the times when DJs like Mister Cee promoted Biggie Smalls fresh out of jail with a demo, or when Digital Underground helped launch Pac with a verse on “Same Song”. We need to go back to the basics.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are some upcoming projects that you are currently working on?
JAY KING: I’m putting the finishing touch on my mixtape “All Hail King”. It’s going to be that project that exposes the world to Jay King. I want it to have that album feel. I moved to Atlanta to be centered in the hip-hop of the south and I think being here has helped to evolve my sound. We recently released the “I’m Coming Up” video to give everyone a preview of what’s to come. Next we’re releasing the “Nothin Else” single and video. That will be the first single released from the mixtape followed by the release of “All I Know”. 2015 will be a big year for the Jay King brand.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: What are your career goals? Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
JAY KING: My only goal in music is to be the greatest rapper to ever live. I know that God has provided me with everything I need to make that happen and now that dream is starting to manifest into reality. In 10 years I believe I will be a Grammy award winning multi-platinum recording artist, anything less than that is a failure to me. I know my aim is high but I believe in my purpose. I believe in my ability. With the right engine behind Jay King I could be one of the biggest things to ever happen to music. I have a passion for the art and craft of creating music. I’m not driven by money, which helps me to avoid becoming complacent. I want to be legendary.
IAA INDUSTRY NEWS: How can your fans access your music and contact you?
JAY KING: Fans can find my music by going to ThatsJayKing.com. There, fans are able to find the latest news, music, and apparel. We have launched Jay King apparel and are excited about the new designs coming to the store soon. Also fans can follow me on Twitter or Instagram @KingofKings772. For booking or beats please email JayKingbeats@gmail.com or JayKingbooking@gmail.com.
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