RnBass had the pleasure of talking to artist Jonn Hart
. Since the world was introduced to Hart with his hit single “Who Booty
” in 2012, the Bay Area artist has emerged as a trendsetter with his own unique style and sound ready to continue taking over the game.
The singer and writer opened about his career, music struggles, growth as an artist and his anticipation to put out quality music
for fans to enjoy. In addition to opening up in this interview, Jonn also gave us a new song to premiere today. See the Jonn Hart x Clayton William collaboration on “Next To Me” below!
When did you know that you wanted to become an artist?
I grew up with my mom singing in the church choir. So I’ve been around music ever since I can remember. My step dad is a gospel musician and has his own studio. I started just experimenting. My step dad would play the piano and my brother and I would add drums to make a beat, that’s how I began to record my own music. The feeling of writing my own songs and displaying my artistry was a crazy feeling. The first time I went in the booth to record, I told myself this is it and I’ve been pursuing music ever since.
Now that you’re a singer and songwriter, where do you get your inspirations for your songs?
I’m a really “viby” person. My inspiration for songs come in many different ways. Sometimes I’ll be in the car and a melody comes to me and I’ll build a song off of that. Sometimes I’ll hear a beat and a concept will come to my head. In my records, I don’t really talk about anything I haven’t experienced or done. Even the stories that I tell, I’ve been around that or witness them. I love creating.
You used to be in a boy band “The Outfit,” what made you leave the group and start your solo career?
It’s something that just kind of happened. We had a good time performing, building and growing our network but there came a time where our four personalities and differences weren’t functioning as a group anymore. Everybody decided to go their separate ways, so that’s when I went solo and dropped my first solo song “Who Booty” and it worked.
How was the change from being in a group to doing your solo hustle?
It was hard, very hard! I came from doing everything in a group environment. I wrote songs with the group. I performed with the group. My hustle and grind was with the group. So when I went solo, it was a big difference. I had to adjust as an artist, and get comfortable by myself. But I eventually loved the feeling and its freedom.
Back in 2012, you had one of the most played songs in the nation with “Who Booty” from peaking at #1 on the Rhythm Radio Music Charts, to debuting on the Billboards Top 40 pop charts, how was that experience for you?
It was life-changing and I am definitely blessed that it happened. It introduced me to the music industry and opened up many doors for me. I got to tour the U.S. and other parts of the world with the single and although, I haven’t had anything as big as “Who Booty,” I learned a lot. It opened my eyes to the industry and I’m still blessed to be doing shows and music today.
What would you say were some of the things that went on behind the scenes that some of the consumers often don’t know about?
Reality. I think when people see that you have a big hit, they automatically look at you a certain way. But If you don’t continue to work and if you don’t have the right business decisions and music behind you to keep you going, then it’s going to be tough.
You also worked closely with L.A. Reid, how was it working with him?
It was dope! I got to meet L.A. Reid a couple of times. I got to perform several songs for him, A&R’s and executives at Epic. Those experiences of being able to interact with people like L.A Reid are humbling.
Between the hype of having such a big hit to going independent, what would you say has been some of your struggles?
I think the main thing is that I’ve had to learn patience. Major labels could be great but being independent could be great as well. When I was on a major, we had the second single picked to follow up “Who Booty,” and I knew it was the wrong choice but it was nothing I could do to switch it. Shortly after that, the A&R’s that had signed me left the company and everything just got cold. So from that experience and picking up the pieces myself, I learned to not give up.
It’s clear to say that you’ve been doing this for a while, but is there still an artist in particular whom you want to work with, if so who would it be?
Yea, I would love to work with Drake and Chris Brown. Those are two artists I respect for their work, craft and artistry.
At the end of the day, there’s so many artists currently going through a similar story like yours. If you could give a piece of advice, what would it be?
I think whatever you’re going through, whether they’re ups and downs just keep going and never stop. I’ve always told people, ‘music is something that you really have to love’. It starts with you, but you also need a tight and small team that believes and has the same vision as you. There’s been days where I feel like I’m on the moon and then there’s other days where I feel like I’m the lowest, but at the end of the day, this is something I love and nothing compares to it. Also, don’t take ‘No’ for an answer, you’re going to get a hundred no’s but when that ‘Yes’ comes, it’ll change your life. I’ve experience that.