J-Onyx continues to set the pace with her powerful lyrics and assertive flow! Her latest release ‘Chop The Bummies’ emphasises the importance of having the right people in your circle. As the rapper effortlessly glides over a hard-hitting beat, she demonstrates the level at which she is establishing herself within the industry. With major support for her debut single ‘Can’t F With’, from BBC 1Xtra, Kiss FM and Apple music, she managed to grab the attentions of some of the UK’s most prominent tastemakers. We sat down with J-Onyx to discuss her latest releases, favourite albums of all time and why she chooses to keep her real identity a mystery.
Growing up, who were your biggest creative influences? What music was playing around the house as a kid?
As a child music would be vibrating in each room. From my brother listening to Rap the likes of Nas, Jay Z and grime artist, Kano, Wiley, Ghetts, to my sister playing Destiny’s Child, TLC, Spice Girls and classic RnB songs then I had my Mum playing Lover’s Rock and Reggae like Gregory Issacs, Dennis Brown, the one and only Bob Marley, Freddie McGregor and many more, so an amalgamation of all these artists make me create what I do today.
We would love to know the story behind your latest single ‘Chop The Bummies’ Where did this track begin? What was the concept behind it and did the track evolve out of a certain sample or lyric?
It started one night when I had something on my chest and I needed to let it out I was literally talking to myself and started writing … much like my first single ‘Can’t F With’ I was in a space of just being super conscious about who was around me and letting them go if it was negative and then “Chop The Bummies” was born. I actually wrote the whole thing in 20 minutes!
What went into your decision to separate your career from your personal life by concealing your identity? Is there an element of today’s music industry that emphasises the person more than the music that you aim to avoid?
Of course exactly that! Look around, people know certain artists more for their aesthetic being rather than their actual music. I am all about the lyrical content and sound before the over-sexualised visuals and that’s my aim and main objective. This doesn’t mean I won’t show what I look like and my sexy side but within reason and when it’s in relation to the content.
Who are three artists or creatives that inspire you that you think deserve more recognition and wanna shout out?
The three would be B Young he had the UK in a chokehold back in 2016 he is super talented. Angel – again super talented amazing voice a UK Gem. Cleo Sol – I think her work is timeless and her voice is effortless.
If you could only listen to three albums the rest of your life, who would they be and why?
I would listen to Beyoncé – ‘Lemonade’, Lauryn Hill – ‘Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ and Biggie – ‘Ready To Die’. These three because they literally describe the moods that I’m likely to be in on a day to day basis. There are songs on these albums that are so so relatable and speak to me differently.
What’s the plan for the future? Any plans for an album/project upcoming or is it all about studio time right now?
So yeah rest of the year i’m just wanting people to enjoy my singles I have out now and in January an EP hopefully and more singles and shows.
Lastly, If you wanted to show someone the real heart of your hometown, where would you take them to get some peng food and to see some dope live music?
So it would have to be South London all the way….. I’d take them to Streatham Hideaway Jazz Club is a great place for live music on a calm vibe and good food and I’d take them to my hometown Boxpark Croydon as it has loads of different styles of food and great music pretty much every night. Lastly, Brixton village also has loads of good food spots and the nightlife in Brixton is lit!