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Get To Know Jesse Gray

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Thanks to artists like Lecrae and NF, Christian rap is in an entirely new space, somewhere between highly anticipated and highly appreciated. Their gritty, realistic look at uplifting that comes partly from a Christian lense but also in the streets around them, has given birth to a generation of artists influenced by these aesthetics and boldly pushing forward to bring the genre further than ever imagined.

One of these new artists is Jesse Gray, a Denver-based rapper with an intense and diaristic style that immediately captivates you upon listening to what he has to say. His recent release, “Catch Me If You Can” balances understanding with despair, utilizing past experiences to paint a haunting portrait of when things start spinning out of control.

We’ve spoken with him about “Catch Me If You Can,” the Denver rap scene, and more in an exclusive interview

Who Is Jesse Gray?
I am a 21-year-old rapper from Denver Colorado. I’ve been writing since I was 14, wrote 6 albums worth of music over the years and am finally ready to drop some music. I’m a creative guy who loves rap that tells a story  whether through a focused storytelling song or a concept album. 

How did you realize that you wanted to rap? 
I grew up in a Christian household and we went to church every Sunday. We almost exclusively listened to worship music. All of the songs that I heard were “positive” and meant to be encouraging, but when I was 14 it didn’t satisfy me anymore. I felt alone in my feelings, as many of us have, and I didn’t know where to go.

One day in the summer, I was searching around in Pandora and found this artist, Lecrae. My mom hated rap at the time, and he sounded like a rapper. So, me being a rebellious teen, I wanted to check out his music. The first song that came on was called “Prayin For You” and it brought me to tears. For the first time, I heard music that wasn’t just saying “everything’s okay” when I didn’t feel that. I heard music that I could relate to deeply, and I instantly fell in love with the vehicle of rap. That’s when I started writing my own songs.

Define “Catch Me If You Can” for me. What about your life is so fast that you want to slow down? 
“Catch Me If You Can” was written while I was in college. It was a really dark time for me, depression was hitting me harder than ever before in my life, and I had fallen out of contact with both friends and family. School was stressful and I didn’t know where to turn, so I fell into drug use. The only way I knew to deal with how I was feeling was to escape it.

At the time I had also lost motivation to write music, which brought me even lower. I felt like I was falling, like I jumped out of an airplane to skydive, except the ground never got any closer. I felt as if I had no direction in life, and no means to control my destiny. I was living fast and making rash decisions, and yet the days seemed so long. This song is a plea to anyone who cared for me, if you see me falling please, catch me if you can.

How do you bring your personal experiences into your music? 
For me,
it’s all about conveying emotion. The song “Prayin For You” had a huge impact on my life and opened my eyes to the fact I was not alone. Whenever I’m feeling something, whether it be joyful or upset, I try to write my feelings in a way so that others can understand and ultimately relate. It helps me understand myself better putting feelings into words, and the goal is to help others with similar feelings. Some people have journals or diaries to make sense of how they feel; I have music. 

What’s the Denver rap scene like? 
Honestly, I haven’t been to many shows or collaborated with anybody down here as of yet because I’ve just been honing my craft first. But I’m excited the begin exploring what the local scene is all about. There are a lot of talented people here.

What are you looking to accomplish in 2020? 
This is my first release, and I’m looking to begin building a fan base this year. I want people to talk about my music with folk who are struggling, I really just want to help people. I’m also looking to strengthen my pen game and work with producers on-site more than just over email. I think that stuff is so cool, collaboration is something I’m hyped for because all my time writing music I’ve been solo.

What are you working on at the moment? When can we expect more music?
I am working on several different projects, but one of them is coming very soon. It’s a full-length album, and “Catch Me If You Can” is the second track on it. It’s called “Limbo” and I’ve been working on it for quite some time, now it’s almost complete. I’m so incredibly excited to show it off, I’m proud of this album and I hope it makes a positive impact on people, and I hope it gets head nods and stank faces.

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Miami Artist Jiggz Drops First Solo EP “Jiggy World”

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Born and raised in Miami, Florida, Jiggz is an independent artist that has a versatile sound and is ready to make a positive impact with his music. The up-and-coming artist takes pride in being authentic and writing lyrics that are relatable.  Formally a dedicated football player, Jiggz found that music was the perfect alternative for him to express his thoughts.

“Music is the way I express myself. It’s the only way I let out my emotions because I tend to bottle things up unless I’m in front of a mic.” He said, “I also have a competitive nature in music as well and strive to always be a better version of myself as an artist.”

Starting his musical career back in 2017, Jiggz has been quite successful in the past few years. You may have heard his music on popular shows such as Daredevil, The Chi, The Grand Army, and a short film called Holler. Ultimately, the independent artist hopes to have a long-lasting career by inspiring and encouraging his fans to chase their dreams.

“I plan to make a positive impact in a way where when people listen to my music they feel a certain way of themselves in a positive light.” He admits, “I want to impact everyone who takes a listen.”

Representing the core of Miami, Jiggz is the next artist on the RISE! Ready to make moves, the independent artist has been working on his first solo EP “Jiggyworld” that is dropping today!

The independent artist has more up his sleeve for 2021, but first make sure to check out his first solo project “Jiggyworld”. Available on all streaming platforms or stream down below!

Follow Jiggz on Social Media for Music Updates and MORE!  

@jiggydmnd

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Features

Yung Bleu’s Manager Mike Anthony Dives Head First Into the World of Artist Management

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Mike Anthony from Mobile, Alabama is the CEO of MA Music and manages Yung Bleu, the artist behind the hit song “You’re Mines Still” featuring Drake. From a young age, Mike has always been a music head. Growing up, he listened to Old School R&B and Soul Music, but had no idea that it would lead him into the music industry. Yung Bleu and Mike met about seven years ago, however he didn’t know much about the industry. Initially, he just wanted to invest and support Yung Bleu because he believed in him and his vision. But Yung Bleu wanted Mike to become his manager.

Since taking on Yung Bleu as an artist, Mike has learned so much about the music business. “What might work for one artist might not work for another, so you have to learn as you go and continue to learn,” he stated. As a manager, Mike is very laid back and is always keeping up with what’s happening behind the scenes. He explained his management style, stating that he lets his artists control their own image and creativity because it allows them to be themselves. On the other hand, he focuses on business administration, recordings, bookings, etc. When Mike is looking for a new artist to work with, he likes to work with the underdog – an artist with a vision others can’t see. An artist with a passion for music and someone willing to give it their all. When he signs an artist, he believes it’s essential to get to know them and build trust and loyalty. “It’s not just about the music or shoving a contract in your face. We have to have trust and loyalty, like a family.”

This may be your first time hearing about Mike Anthony, but this year, expect to see and hear a lot more about him. The possibilities are endless for Mike. Although he focuses on management, be on the lookout for his new music publishing company coming soon and follow him on Instagram @MAmusic to stay connected and informed.

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Features

Michael Dean Has Over 24,000 monthly listeners on Spotify

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Rising Artist Michael Dean has delivered his long-awaited debut EP “Almost Famous” which features seven tracks that showcase a unique blend of various hip-hop sounds.

Almost Famous” is a sarcastic, dry side of me that’s why the name fits so well. I take my music seriously, but I also love making it.” He said, “It’s a whole vibe and feels to every song and track.”

Despite enduring a difficult year as a musician, Michael Dean was focused on releasing his debut EP which received an overwhelming amount of support from his growing fan base. 

Since his early childhood, Michael Dean revealed having a connection with hip-hop music. Throughout the years, the Orange County artist found comfort within the process of making music creating a bond that could never be broken.

Now, Michael Dean is associated with Compton Menace Collective (MHG) and has worked alongside notable producers and artists such as iLL Faded, Daylyt, Compton Menace, Caskey, King Los & more.

Following the success of his past singles and accumulating at least 24,000 monthly listeners on Spotify, rising artist Michael Dean is continuing to build his fan base with his EP, proving how diverse his sound could be. 

Michael Dean’s “Almost Famous-AF” is now available everywhere you can stream music. 

For more information on Michael Dean, check out his social media sites below: 

Contact Person: Dean Martinez
Artist/Company Name: Michael Dean Official
Instagram: @MichaelDeanofficial
Twitter: @itzmichaelDean
Email: MichaelDeanofficial@gmail.com
YouTube Channel: https://youtube.com/c/MichaelDeanOfficial

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