AAHH recently had a chat with Detroit-based MC Justin Don, about his upbrining, introduction to Hip Hop, his upcoming LP, and more. Check out the interiew, below.
Tell us about the music — describe your sound
My music is inspired largely by Drake. When I first got into music it was through the mainstream stuff like Drake, Big Sean, etc. (this was in my senior year of high school, 2014). That being the case I’ve always figured their music inspired the core of my sound. Today though, I take inspiration from a lot of different styles of music and try and incorporate them into the sound of 2018.
The people at the studio I work with always are trying to figure out a name for the style of music I make because they say it is a new style. Their most recent title for my sound is “melodic trap.” I’m not sure how much I agree with the name, but they have a less bias opinion than me, so I guess my sound is a melodic trap for now.
How did you get involved in music?
The fall after graduation, I left home for the first time. I moved to Mt. Pleasant to attend Central Michigan University where I spent my freshman year living in the dorms. One of my roommates was a friend from high school, but my other roommate was a gentleman named Rob Marrocco.
Rob was very artistic, in fact, he was and still is, pursuing a career in film. He was the kind of guy who brought a lot of things with him to college that your typical freshman wouldn’t. One of those things was his keyboard. Of all the random stuff Rob brought with him, the keyboard was easily the most memorable and the most used. He would play songs and sing on that keyboard like a pro, and the girls loved it. This motivated me and my roommate, Jomi, to learn piano too. That was my first experience creating music.
After college I decided to dive deeper into music; I bought a keyboard, a beat pad, and Ableton and started making beats. After a couple of months, I stopped making beats and began writing and recording songs. I practiced for about a year and then moved to an apartment in Detroit with my buddy Patrick Hannah. This is where I was able to hone my craft.
After the year flew by, I decided to move back home to save some money. I continued to write, record, and practice music but wasn’t able to put as much time into music as I used to. This was because I started an internship as a financial representative and was starting my junior year of college. Not wanting to miss out on his chance to live my dreams, I got back to making music and decided to call up the nearest studio to record “I Got It.” This ended up being the spark that changed everything. Today, that spark is now a fire that is growing bigger every day. I am getting ready to release my first studio album “Will of the D.” I’m also planning to release multiple music videos, new visuals, and a variety of merchandise soon.
Who/what were some of your influences?
As I stated earlier, Drake mainly inspires my music. Some other significant influences for me are Post Malone and Big Sean. Lately, I have been getting some inspiration from people such as Lil Yachty, 6ix9ine, Lil Uzi Vert, and Trippie Red. My inspiration from these artists comes less from their music and more from their ability to create a brand for themselves that is so distinct.
What have you released?
As of today, I have released three singles: “I Got It,” “Distance,” and “Waves.” They are available to listen to everywhere.
What are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on my debut studio album which will be called “Will Of The D.” It will be 14 songs, and the three singles I have released so far will be on the album. The album is already recorded so right now we are just working on the polishing touches, the mixes, and the master. In addition to the album, we are working on music that is scheduled to be released after the album. 1We want to make sure we have music on deck to release when needed in today’s rapid-fire release industry.
What have been some of your most significant achievements thus far?
In chronological order I would rank my most significant achievements so far as:
1) Getting my music on all major streaming platforms and becoming verified on Spotify.
2) Getting into the top 10 charts on ReverbNation.
3) Completing a studio album.
4) Reaching 5000 likes on my facebook page.
5) Getting daily listeners on all music platforms (youtube, SoundCloud, Spotify, iTunes, etc.)
What are your goals in the industry?
My goal is to make music my career.
What’s next for you, professionally?
I will continue to grow my brand and prepare for my album release. Following my album, I will continue to release new music. Day by day I will expand my fanbase until it is big enough where I can focus 100% on music and make the push to the next level.