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Jelani Blackman

Musician — London

Name, where are you from?
Jelani Blackman, London.

Describe your style in three words?
Heavy, Deep, Energy.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Dizzee Rascal when 'Boy In Da Corner' first came out, 'Fix Up, Look Sharp' was the heaviest thing I'd ever seen live at that point, changed my life.

If you could be on the line up with any two artists in history?
Kayne, so I could low key surprise him and jump out as a hype man on songs I was feeling. Oasis because the atmosphere they'd create would be mad and it's actually so peak they might never reunite for that to happen.

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Grime, dunno if you'd still call it a subculture to be honest. But it was massively influential to me when it was, even though I always knew I didn't wanna be a grime artist. Probably Indie as well actually. Taught me how to mosh, was a very valuable life lesson.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Jesus. Because what was the deal really.

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
I loved Corsica Studios. The bass banged, and the energy inside was a lot. It was my first headline gig, and there was mad love inside.

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
I don't think Trim gets the widespread rating he should like other older grime artists. Everything about his flow and bars is deep. And when he dropped his new project recently, it sounded fresh and still sounded like him.


Experimental hip-hop orientated artist Jelani Blackman's career so far has seen him work with such diverse artists as Sylas, Brian Eno and Kanye West. His latest vibrant track 'Go Low' is accompanied by an equally vibrant video made with London based creative agency Paq. 

 

The first track you played on repeat?
'I Believe I Can Fly' by R Kelly.

A song that defines the teenage you?
Ah damn, don't know if I could choose one. I banged A LOT of RnB.
'Let Me Love You' by Mario.

One record you would keep forever?
Either of Amy Winehouse's two albums. Could choose any song off either of them. Me and Mr Jones is up there. Also, this question just reminded me how sick she is and currently re-listening to both albums.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
'Everything is everything."

From 'Everything Is Everything' by Lauryn Hill.

A song you wished you had written?
'Champagne Supernova' by Oasis.

Best song to turn up loud?
'Feel So Good' by Mase. I've been using it to celebrate good things. Also, 'Screw N Brew' by Mist & Mostack bangs.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
People might not expect me to like more dance/electronic music. Like Cosha (formerly known as Bonzai)
'Do You Wanna Dance' by Cosha.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
Most songs to be honest. 'The Weekend (Calvin Harris Remix)' by SZA.

Best song to end an all-nighter?
'Gravity' by John Mayer. Sometimes that's just needed.

Any new bands you are into at the moment?
Husky Loops! They go in. 'Daft' by Husky Loops. 

Name, where are you from?
Jelani Blackman, London.

Describe your style in three words?
Heavy, Deep, Energy.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Dizzee Rascal when 'Boy In Da Corner' first came out, 'Fix Up, Look Sharp' was the heaviest thing I'd ever seen live at that point, changed my life.

If you could be on the line up with any two artists in history?
Kayne, so I could low key surprise him and jump out as a hype man on songs I was feeling. Oasis because the atmosphere they'd create would be mad and it's actually so peak they might never reunite for that to happen.

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Grime, dunno if you'd still call it a subculture to be honest. But it was massively influential to me when it was, even though I always knew I didn't wanna be a grime artist. Probably Indie as well actually. Taught me how to mosh, was a very valuable life lesson.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Jesus. Because what was the deal really.

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
I loved Corsica Studios. The bass banged, and the energy inside was a lot. It was my first headline gig, and there was mad love inside.

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
I don't think Trim gets the widespread rating he should like other older grime artists. Everything about his flow and bars is deep. And when he dropped his new project recently, it sounded fresh and still sounded like him.


Experimental hip-hop orientated artist Jelani Blackman's career so far has seen him work with such diverse artists as Sylas, Brian Eno and Kanye West. His latest vibrant track 'Go Low' is accompanied by an equally vibrant video made with London based creative agency Paq. 

 

The first track you played on repeat?
'I Believe I Can Fly' by R Kelly.

A song that defines the teenage you?
Ah damn, don't know if I could choose one. I banged A LOT of RnB.
'Let Me Love You' by Mario.

One record you would keep forever?
Either of Amy Winehouse's two albums. Could choose any song off either of them. Me and Mr Jones is up there. Also, this question just reminded me how sick she is and currently re-listening to both albums.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
'Everything is everything."

From 'Everything Is Everything' by Lauryn Hill.

A song you wished you had written?
'Champagne Supernova' by Oasis.

Best song to turn up loud?
'Feel So Good' by Mase. I've been using it to celebrate good things. Also, 'Screw N Brew' by Mist & Mostack bangs.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
People might not expect me to like more dance/electronic music. Like Cosha (formerly known as Bonzai)
'Do You Wanna Dance' by Cosha.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
Most songs to be honest. 'The Weekend (Calvin Harris Remix)' by SZA.

Best song to end an all-nighter?
'Gravity' by John Mayer. Sometimes that's just needed.

Any new bands you are into at the moment?
Husky Loops! They go in. 'Daft' by Husky Loops. 

Jelani Blackman | Go Low (2018)

Jelani Blackman | Follow (2017)

Jelani Blackman | Twenty//Three (2015)