Jaywop Names His Top 5 Artists
Jaywop has big dreams to make it in this rap game, and he’s got the music to show for it. The young Tacoma, Washington-bred MC moved to Phoenix at the age of 12, a place he attributes to making him the man he is today. His sound is reminiscent of a blend of Isaiah Rashad, Saba, and Buddy — all his favorite artists.
His sound is electric and eccentric, which will unveil itself as he releases more music. With his most recent single “Big Bad,” he proves that he can create real, authentic hip-hop, all in one.
AllHipHop caught up with Jaywop via FaceTime who sipping on a beer during quarantine in Phoenix, Arizona, soaking it all in before his move to Long Beach the following week.
AllHipHop: For those who don’t know, who is Jaywop?
Jaywop: That’s a very complex question because Jaywop is multiple people. It depends on what’s going on, honestly. It really depends on where I am. Overall what I’m exploring with my music is that I’m somebody who likes to shine light on the average person. Because not everyone necessarily has that Beyonce or Hov quality. Some of us are junior varsity, on our way to varsity. That’s what I’m putting on for.
AllHipHop: Being from Washington, what was the household like growing up?
Jaywop: The household was very loud. There was a lot going. There were 4 or 5 different lanes or paths I could go, not all of them being good. It was really interesting being the youngest person in the household, get back and see everything that’s going on. Whether it’s good or bad, seeing some of it all happen at the same time. It was wild, that’s the best way to put it. [chuckles]
Jaywop: My pops did whatever he had to in terms of making sure we were okay, that we had everything we needed to. The area where my house was in the neighborhood was a central location for all my family and people we knew in the neighborhood. There were always people coming and going. I got to experience a lot of different people, a lot different vibes, a lot of different crazy s##t to be honest.
AllHipHop: You say Phoenix molded you into the man you were today, how so?
Jaywop: I moved here during that prime age where you’re really trying to define yourself. I moved here when I was 12. A lot of the stuff going on around me, it affected me. By the time I was 16, I started discovering people like Isaiah Rashad, Saba, etc. That’s where the switch completely slipped in. If it weren't for what I was going through during that current time, me actually being here, then I wouldn’t have become the artist that I am.
AllHipHop: When did music become real for you?
Jaywop: Music became real in the year that I spent at University of Arizona. I realized I wasn’t like any of the people there. I realized it was a scam. Personally if you’re not going to be a lawyer or doctor, something life-changing and compelling to changing the future of what it is that you actually need certifications for — in this day in age, you don’t need it. People are showing they’re transcending everyday with simple stuff like high school education.
AllHipHop: Why the move to Long Beach?
Jaywop: I have a lot of friends who live in California. The advice I’d always get is try to be as close to LA as you can, without actually being in LA. Try to get some slightly cheaper rent.
AllHipHop: What’s the inspiration behind “Big Bad”?
Jaywop: The same thing that’s been inspiring a lot of music right now: keep pushing regardless of whatever’s going on. I’ve always wanted to be the best artist in the current place I’m in. At times, you’re getting the recognition of what you feel you deserve or what you want. It can do 2 things for you: it can make you super salty or it can motivate you. I’ve never been a salty person, so it pushed me. Okay if I got something that I believe in, y’all don’t eat it up, it’ll lead me to do the next thing. That’s the whole idea behind “Big Bad”: no matter what’s going on, I’m constantly pushing.
AllHipHop: 3 things you need in the studio?
Jaywop: I definitely need weed, I need beer, and good vibes. I don’t like to pack too many people into the studio. Just the people I keep around me, that’s it. I like to stay consistent as I am with the engineers that I work with.
AllHipHop: Who’s in your Top 5?
Jaywop: My current Top 5, it always has to be J. Cole. Saba. After Care for Me, he made me look at him way different. He’s in my personal Top 5 as of today. #3, I definitely have to put Tory Lanez in there right now because of his work ethic and his consistency. Kaytranada has definitely been in my Top 5, love Kaytra. Lastly, I’m listening to a lot of Buddy.
AllHipHop: What can we expect next?
Jaywop: A lot of crazy ass music. It’s not your typical sound, like what’s popular right now. The beat selection from people, it’s similar with everything that’s popular right now. You know what to expect, everybody has a certain sound that they’re comfortable with trying out. A lot of the stuff I’m making is super crazy with out-of-here potential, but it’s extremely different at the same time. You’ll hear with the next one! I’m going to be around.