I’m more excited than ever to announce this new series entitled Artists In The Area! My hope for this series is to gather different types of artists from all over Upstate South Carolina and feature their work on my blog. Through featuring different artists each time I’m also hoping that we can all build a community to network together since there doesn’t seem to be much of that around the upstate. Each post in this series will have an interview, a few pictures of the artist/their work and also links to where you can find them on the internet and social media!
Today’s featured artist is none other than Jared Gentry, also known as the music artist Jay Gent. Jared is a Senior at Powdersville High School and has been making music for a year now. I was able to sit down with him earlier this week and talk to him a little bit about his music, the creative process and everything in between. The first burning question in my mind, (and also Caleb’s), was where Jared records his music. His sound is wonderful, the lyrics are bomb, the beats are marvelous and the way they all intertwine is just impeccable, so I was surprised to find out that as of the music he’s made so far it has all been recorded from an office space in his house. Two tools are all he needs to complete the process; a microphone and his computer. He was rather happy to mention the fact that he just order some sound foam to put up in a smaller space to hopefully make the sound of his music even better. The funny thing about Mr. Gentry even becoming a music making man is that his rapping career came about in his pre-calculus class his junior year of high school. An assignment came up on the unit circle where they had to make a song out of the functions, and Jared took it to a whole other level. After that project he got kind of serious about making music and found some time to sit down and see what he could really do with rapping. Low and behold beauty was created. I know I’m sounding very dramatic about this, but go take a listen to his mix tape STATIC —> https://soundcloud.com/jaygent/sets, and you will understand why I’m so blown away with his work. First of all I never expected this from him, and second of all he has insane talent, especially for somebody in a small area like ours.
After Jared started getting serious about rapping he began to get into a process when it came to writing. He mentioned that he’s most productive late at night or in the middle of the night. The most important part of his process is that he has to detach himself from everything around him, go to a specific area, and get himself in the mindset to be creative and productive. Time management is something that is really important to Jared in the creative process. He’s always worried the won’t have enough time to do everything he needs/wants to do, so he’s all about working hard and being ambitious. Speaking of Ambition, I asked Jay if there was something that seemed to be impulse for him to write about and his answer was probably my favorite of the night. With a little giggle he said, “Ambition…Without a doubt. I have to calm myself down a lot when I start writing about it.”
When it comes to the work Jay-Gent puts out he finds a lot of inspiration in Earl Sweatshirt and Kendrick Lamar. He really enjoys the way they mix elements of different genres and how different their music is. Having a unique style and rapping about things/situations that he feels are necessary for him to speak on is something that is a big deal to Jared. The ultimate goal for Jay Gent is to get a bigger and better following and become noticed. He was sure to follow this statement up by saying “…but who’s isn’t though?” Jared feels like the work he is producing is worth more than what he is getting out of it now, so he wants to work hard to make his bigger dreams a reality. In his song “READY2GO” he touches on the fact that he gets discouraged and wonders why he keeps going with making music sometimes, so I was curious to find out if that is a feeling he is used to. He responded to this question very strongly stating that he always feels that way. Personally, I think this is typical of a creative mind and the passion to make something big out of your dreams. You’re more susceptible to being hard on yourself and wanting that most our of what you are doing. Jared mentioned that the hardest part about being an artist is putting in so much work and feeling so good about your product but only getting 30 views. This is a feeling I think a lot of artists can relate to. He also mentioned that he gets discouraged quite a bit because it’s hard to connect with people in the same field being that we are in a small area. When it comes to the music scene in our area Jay Gent isn’t fully feeling it. He said it might be because he has high expectations, but he feels like there is a lack of talent in the area and not many people worth working with. The idea of a big city with many different options in the music/art business is something that was very appealing to him, as is to most entrepreneurs including myself.
I’m really excited to see where this art form takes Mr. Gentry and so happy that I was able to sit down and pick his brain a little bit about his work. Make sure you go show his music some love and support!
Soundcloud- Jared Gentry
Be sure to subscribe to stay tuned in with other artists in the area. I have some really exciting people to introduce to you all in the upcoming posts.
Thanks for popping in!