We have posted a ton of music by Jhameel over the past year. We think the music he puts out on a consistent basis is superb and it contains an extraordinary sound. With the conclusion of Jhameel’s newest series, Are You Free, we thought Jhameel deserved the NSK spotlight. Take a moment to crawl into the head of a special talent in our latest, exclusive, NSK interview.
NSK: Jhameel, thank you for sitting down with us. Our readers know who you are as you have continued to put out quality music over the past few years, so let’s jump right into the good stuff, your music.
Which has been your favorite series to record so far, “Waves” or “Are You Free”? Why?
Jhameel: It’s hard to say, but I think it’s the Are You Free series. I feel like I matured a lot both as a person and as an artist between the two releases because of all these new experiences, so I just identify with its personality more. I’m also developing more as an audio engineer, learning new techniques and even developing some of my own.
NSK: Describe what you hoped to achieve in each series, “Waves” and “Are You Free.” What were you focused on musically, both in terms of your vocals and the entire sound of each track you created. Where do you go from here?
Jhameel: In “Waves” I was hoping to achieve a sound that took all the good elements from my previous releases. I wanted to get the natural quirky vibe of “The Human Condition” with the pop structure of my Dance EP, and I wanted to develop my vocals more as aggressive and poppy while still maintaining some endearing flaws. With Are You Free, my audio engineering was strong enough that I could use it as a form of expression itself. I wanted to hone down on an atmosphere, a style, and immerse people in it by creating a sound with huge depth and vision. For my next release, I’m planning on taking a more minimalist approach, I’m bringing back the live violins and cellos, using some warm synths, and putting everything over crunchy warm hip hop beats.
NSK: Which song do you find catchier: “Call Me Maybe” or “Whistle” by Flo Rida? And would you ever consider doing a creative cover of a hit pop song like those?
Jhameel: Call Me Maybe is way too catchy, I’d definitely consider doing a creative cover of a song like that
NSK: If we could take a peek at your iTunes, what would be your most played song/artist? Which artist do you identify with the most/aspire to be like
Jhameel: After Spotify came out, I can’t use Itunes any more haha :) I honestly can’t say there’s an artist I listen to most these days, there’s so much free streaming music out there that I’ve developed a sort of music ADD. Been listening to a lot of old stuff by The Beatles and Bob Dylan, also love the chill wave artists like Tyco and Neon Indian. I guess the artists I aspire to most be like are Prince and Michael Jackson, they left such a giant legacy, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have that kind of ambition.
NSK: What is your favorite animal? Flavor of ice cream? City?
Jhameel: Favorite animal is hawk, ice cream is Americone Dream, city is Minnetonka, Minnesota
NSK: What is one interesting fact about you that the blogosphere doesn’t know yet? (Can literally be anything)
Jhameel: I’m extremely good at origami
NSK: Describe your workflow when making a record. How has it changed since your earlier projects?
Jhameel: It changes every release. For my earlier releases, it was me, logic pro, and a bunch of acoustic instruments like guitar, trumpet, piano, cello, violin etc. For Waves it was similar but I had an analog synth to beef up the sound. For Are You Free, it was completely midi, I’d never used midi before so I was exploring all the possibilities there. So for my next release I’ll be combining real instruments with midi percussion and a little mid synth, and I just got thousands of dollars in plugins so that should really warm up my sound and create even more depth. I’m geeking out haha, but I love the tech side of music.
NSK: Your collaboration with Hoodie Allen is a jam! Any other interesting combinations in the works?
Jhameel: quite a few actually, Blue Satellite, Flosstradamus, DWNTWN, Giraffage, E-Dubble, Rockie Fresh, Skizzy Mars :).
NSK: We heard you went to UC Berkeley on a military scholarship. What was it like serving in the military? Looking back would you chose that path again? How do you feel that has influenced the music you create (if at all)?
Jhameel: The military was interesting to say the least. It changed me a lot, at first in a bad way, but in the long run for the better. At first it made me angry, angry because i was part of the culture and angry that the culture exists, but now i think it gave me a ton of discipline. I have a huge work ethic now because I gained a lot of endurance and self-discipline in training, and I learned how to identify people’s strengths. My music has a lot of understanding now too, I had experiences in both the conservative world of the military and the ultra-liberal world of the Berkeley coops, I like to think I have a fairly balanced view of the world now.
NSK: Why are you Not Some Kid?
Jhameel: I am not some kid because I know myself better than anyone else
(audio file to come)
There you have it, folks! If you want to rep the Not Some Kid movement, too, be sure to pick up our new “Not Some Kid” shirts HERE.
Special thanks to Jhameel for the interview, and we wish him the best of luck on his current trip to Japan!ShareThis