St. Louis Hip-Hop Recording Artist, Jay Spacely, has been racking up plays on Soundcloud and setting an example of the impact the new-school is imprinting on the ever-shifting culture of music. Dropping his next EP with one of the most prestigious record labels in the world of Hip-Hop, Priority Records, Jay is determined to make his inner revelations an outward experience for all. I caught up with the man to discuss how he started off making beats with pots and pans, his journey toward landing a major distribution deal, tattoos and more.
First and foremost, tell us about your journey as an artist. When did you start writing and at what age did you first pick up the mic?
I’ve been recording music since 2010, back when I was only about 15-years-old, but I’ve been making music since I was a young kid. I remember back when I was five or six years old, and literally, I would be doing the whole cliche “pots & pans” and “forks and spoons” beats out on the corner of my block. I used to go and search for my favorite artist or my favorite song at that times lyrics and study that more than I did anything else.
You dropped the single, “Drippin’ Juice”, off of your ‘No Intro EP’ with an extension of one most prominent labels in the game, Cash Money Records. Tell us about how that collaboration came to life.
I opened up for Caskey (a Hip-Hop recording artist signed with Cash Money) on his ‘BLACK SHEEP Tour’ in St. Louis, and then a few months later, I wound up linking up with Kyle Denmead who is part of the production team, The Avengerz, who also happens to be signed with Cash Money Records. They sent over a pack of beats and I remember as soon as I got that email and heard the first few beats, I said to myself: this is about to make some history.
What keeps you on your toes and driven to rise as both an artist and individual? Shed some light for those taking a similar path in life.
I’ve always been a very humble and competitive person. I think that as an artist you have to have that mentality or you’ll just find yourself being complacent. I’m very goal driven towards my career and I try to make every track I release a piece of art from myself for my fans and new listeners.
Tell us about your roots growing up in St. Louis. How did your surroundings contribute to who you are today?
That takes me back to the very first question; it influenced everything around me, like the city will. Also, I want to say what’s up and much love to everyone back at home in Granite City, Illinois. Thank you for riding with me on this journey & let’s keep this wave going.
Let’s talk tattoos. Tell us about some of your favorite personal tattoos and the tattoo artists that you worked with to bring the pieces to life.
Honestly, each piece of mine has a very personal meaning towards certain moments, good and bad, that’ve happened during my life. My tattoo artist, John Hildebrand, has done every piece of mine. He was trained by my Step-Dad, Ray, who is no longer with us any more, so I feel like it’s the only right way to do it and all of his artwork is out of this world in comparison to some shops I’ve seen around our city. As for my pieces though, I sadly only have seven tattoos at this moment, but we’re currently in the working process, I promise.
Who are some of your favorite fellow Hip-Hop artists that have inspired you to get a jump-start on your career at a young age?
There are honestly so many to say for different times or different vibes, but the diehard in me wants to say it would have to be J. Cole, Lil Wayne, T.I, and Caskey.
How has SoundCloud benefited and exposed you as an artist?! The service and platform that is provided to artist is often overlooked.
It’s honestly one of my FAVORITE outlets of streaming. It’s more personal for me, because around our city a lot of people were sleeping on SoundCloud at one point. And really, I had fans downloading SoundCloud just to make a profile and follow the music. I mean everybody that’s streaming music is obviously supposed to have a Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music etc, but at one point, SoundCloud was that personal interaction point between me and the fans. I love everything about it.
If you could sit down and have a dinner with any fellow musician alive to draw inspiration, who would you choose and why?!
It would have to be Lil Wayne – because it’s like this: there’s only so much game to be gave away and sold.
What do fans of Jay Spacely have to look forward to in 2018?! Any tour dates or locked-down projects?
I’m hoping to line up a West Coast Tour in celebration of landing my distribution deal with Priority Records based in Hollywood, California. Priority Records is an American record label that changed the music industry by pioneering distribution deals with artist-run companies. Priority is known for many highly successful artists including Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Master P, Jay-Z, and Snoop Dogg. It also distributed Hip-Hop record labels including Death Row Records, No Limit Records, Roc-A- Fella Records, and Wu-Tang Records.
The tour will be focused on promoting my next release through Priority Records, ‘ELEVATION: EP’, which is set to be released in 2018!
Last but certainly not least, any closing messages for your fans?!
I love you all and thank you for all the support and love through all the long years. Let’s keep grinding together & make all of our dreams come true.
Jay Spacely Social Links: