Juñor Reaches Number 6 On The iTunes Hip Hop Charts
August 14, 2015
Juñor is a Melbourne rapper that has one foot firmly in the hip hop world, and the other in the realm of psychedelia. His recent 'Fluorescent Connections' EP, found the artist getting noticed around the country and we wanted to find out more.
Firstly, a big congrats on debuting and reaching #6 on the itunes hip hop charts, #44 in the overall charts, and were the highest placed Australian hip hop act. Was that a surprise or all a part of the plan?
Thank you so much! It wasn’t part of the plan at all; we just felt like iTunes was the best way to release my first EP and then that happened on day one. I was stoked and posting on social media when we were sitting at like #90 next to Young Thug, next thing I know I’ve come off stage after DJing for Ivan Ooze on this Seth Sentry tour, the day is about to end and we’re sitting at #6. It was mad humbling and I’m crazy proud of the team.
You even got to #44 on the overall charts! Tell us about 'Fluorescent Connection' - what sets you apart from other hip-hop artists out there right now?
It’s an EP, a 5-track roller-coaster journey into my mind plus 2 bonus tracks just to tack onto the release and give a little more.
The entire EP was produced by LLUM alongside my writing and input on the beats. We made each song in order and one by one. Once I’d finish writing one song, he'd play me an idea for the next beat and we'd work on that till the song was finished. The crazy thing is, every beat idea LLUM would show me, was exactly on point with the vibes I'd have heading into that song. It was pretty special.
The simplest way to put it, it's a journey. And crafted as a journey. Each step, everything that happens, every switch up, every intro, dialogue and outro are designed like that for a reason. It’s a substance-induced trip I’d love you to get lost in with me. I created a full visual stream to add to the experience. I think that’s probably my favourite way for anyone to listen to it and get lost in it.
I barely consider this record ‘hip hop’, but it’s quite obvious that it’s a massive influence on the music I make. I’m very psychedelically influenced. I probably don’t dress or look like what you’d consider a hip-hop artist to be. I pretty much have a whole bunch of experiences, musical influences, earthly vibes and emotions chopped up into a mix bowl and rolled into this weird ambient floaty, yet intense sound that I love to create and experiment with.
You're on tour right now - what has been the best live show you've ever seen and why? What can people expect from your live show?
I’m pretty blessed to be able to pursue different creative passions of mine. One of them being DJing. So to be DJ for my bro Ivan Ooze and to be able to live out these tour experiences with him is beyond awesome. We’re about 36 or so shows through Seth Sentry’s mammoth 50-date tour (the biggest hip hop tour in Australian history I’m pretty sure). It’s been nuts.
The best live show I’ve ever seen is Kid Cudi play an epic 2 and a bit hour closing set in the middle of nowhere in Adelaide at this 3 day festival. I was right up the front on the barrier seeing my idol. In true 'Cudder' fashion, his set was delayed by 45 minutes; people were setting up everything on stage to perfection, full band, and an epic red mic stand out the front. It felt like it wasn’t just musically crafted as a perfect experience but also visually. It was just before he dropped his experimental 'WZRD' album with Dot Da Genius and played 2 songs from it for the first time in the world, even jumped on the guitar.
His set took me on a full journey; he had Dot on keys behind him and even acknowledged how much I knew his shit haha! It was EPIC.
At my live show you can expect a whole heap of work from me and hopefully an escape from reality for the length of the show. As a DJ, producer and vocalist I try to incorporate all 3 into my show. You’ll see a show based around my vocal performance with elements of live production and DJing. Also, always expect other members from my R.E.A.L Music creative collective to make appearances and there to be a strong visual aspect to aid the journey. I like my sets to flow a lot, very little stopping and starting.
You have a really visual element behind your music - why do you like to incorporate this into your music?
I write my music visually. I’ve always imagined the vibes of songs to fit colour schemes. I guess that plus the psychedelic influence of everything I do and enjoy translates into wanting others to have an all-senses experience as well. I’ve got so much going on in my head that I just want to use all resources to try and turn that into art in all ways possible.
It’s not just visuals either, expect other senses to be active too. There’s no lack of incense and other things creating aromas around the stage when I play a live show.
Which hip-hop artists help influence you when you first starting listening to music? And has this changed today?
Like any kid, you have artists who were at the forefront of the genre at the time you started becoming aware of music by yourself and they would be the obvious influences on your listening. I grew up at the time of guys Eminem, 50 Cent, Dre being at the forefront. But I also grew up in a very non-hip-hop based household, I was a drummer so there were influences from such a wide range of genres and music. My folks had a crazy music collection and would be listening to stuff 24/7, but none of that was hip-hop.
It wasn’t until I was near my teens where I started really grabbing bus passes and finding ways to save money to get to my nearest CD store and discover stuff for myself. Guys like Kanye & Cudi made me do that for sure. Limewire and Kazaam helped me with that like I can’t even explain.
Today, my influences are based on full vibes rather than specific things like flow, beats, lyrical content etc. If music can make me zone out and vibe, no matter how hard or soft it is, I get something from that. Regardless of genre. I’m an online crate digger. I can’t go a week without discovering something new. My iPod is full of next-to-nobodies who have released EP’s or mixtapes on the net and I’ve managed to sort through, listen and dig their stuff.
Check out BreezePark, Earthgang, Mister Lies, Tipper, Deniro Farrar, Royce Rizzy. They’re a few on rotation right now
What is next for Juñor and how can we catch you live?
Expect total creative freedom and unique boundary pushing. Planning to have a free mixtape out before the year ends, but for now, start playing the 'Fluorescent Connections' live show, which I’m debuting at the R.E.A.L Music X A-grade Hydroponics Warehouse Party in Melbourne on October 1st, alongside an incredible line up which will drop soon. Expect a few more visual things to drop from Fluorescent Connections too. And as always, you can see this weird head of hair vibing out behind the decks at any Ivan Ooze show haha.
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