“I finally did it, it’s finally out!”
The Def Jam emerging artist, Jahkoy, exclaims this fact with complete joy and satisfaction as he refers to his latest EP release Foreign Water. I had the chance to speak with Jahkoy on this amazing new project that steers away from the path he once traveled on through versatile and all over the place sounds. Instead, he’s taken a detour to a more consistent, evenly-toned, and expressive cocktail of vocals and instrumentals. He’s told us to expect a lot of pictures and videos to accompany the new project as well; so definitely something to stay tuned for.
Jahkoy’s new sound can be described as something along the lines of Drake’s dancehall / rap charisma and Trey Songz’s melodies. It chases your emotions around melancholic, ominous, bright, and upbeat harmonies and lyrics. He’s found a pattern of smooth vocals that work best for him and he knows now who he is. In his voice, we can hear a lot more strength and understanding of vocal boundaries.
The EP is well constructed and uniquely made. Songs flow and transition into each other flawlessly while each track stills holds a personality of its own. I proceeded to ask Jahkoy questions about this record such as where he got the idea for the cover art and name of the album?
“Well, the idea of the cover art actually came from a random tweet that I got from a fan, where they asked ‘what are you gonna call your fan base?’ And I wasn’t really sure, so what I did was tweeted it out to my fans like ‘What name do you guys feel like I should call you,’ and a lot of the fans said ‘Koi Fish,’ and that name was really popular, so it was definitely from my fans, so shout out to them…”
He laughed and you could hear the enthusiasm in his voice as he spoke about his fans and the whole creation he had been working on for some time, finally coming to fruition. He continued, “It’s kind of a play on words for the ‘Koy’ in my name. And what we did for the cover was we changed the color of the original color of koi fish, which are usually orange, and we flipped it red… red is my favorite color…The concept for the title was just me, and my experience of coming from Toronto; I’m very foreign, I’m coming from another country and I’m just exploring, I’m exploring everything out there for me. A lot of people always used to ask me where I was from and when I said Toronto, you know a lot of the rising stars are from there like Drake and The Weeknd, all these stars coming out of that city, people would be saying “there must be something in the water.’ That was kind of interesting to me, that was kind of cool. Like foreign water. And now I’m living in LA and I’m foreign, and I’m getting into the foreign experience, and this whole idea is just something to digest like water… haha. It was a crazy idea when I was thinking about it by myself… haha… I even thought it was silly. But I just wanted to have fun with it.”
Jahkoy was very pleased to know that he could let his fans be a part of his creative process. He elaborated on how this project represented his journey of self-discovery in his music and how he came to find who is as an artist.
The breakout contemporary pop/R&B/electro/hip hop artist delved into the fact that his music in the past was much more “experimental” and he had to base his music on a lot of “trial and error of the different sounds that [he] might like.” But now that he’s given that a chance, he’s searching a more profound definition of what it means to be “Jahkoy.” He’s transformed from being a shy kind of guy, mostly coming from a rapping background, to the guy who recognizes his sound and is more settled with himself as he continues to grow. “Now, I have the resources to build the Jahkoy name,” he tells me. He further states “It’s [his music] is not genre related… it’s spontaneous, and you don’t really know what to expect because the music is so up and down… there’s so much to take from it.”
He recently got in touch with a vocal coach and that alone has made him more comfortable with his own voice and artistic style. He says he feels now more “in control of my voice and I’m strong and confident of where I want to be in the picture.”
We discussed further his collaboration with the Blank Face rapper ScHoolboy Q on the track “California Heaven,” and how incredible it was for him to have that star-struck experience on one of his own songs.
And as we always do with our featured artists, we always ask them what they’re #OnTheVerge of doing. For Jahkoy? He’s #OnTheVerge of Building an Empire.
His manager chimed in at that moment with to laugh as he jested “Now that’s some Lucious Lyon sh*t! haha” We continued to laugh all together over this Fox TV series reference (Empire– shame on you if you didn’t know that), and then after we collected ourselves once again, I thanked Jahkoy for his time, wished him the best of luck, and said that I look forward to what is to come for him and his music.
He replied graciously, “thank you so much for calling and sharing this with me.”
He’s growing, he’s developing, and now, the once so introverted Jahkoy is hungry to make new music and share it with his fans! Now that’s an artist ready to take on the industry one sound wave at a time.
Follow JAHKOY via his socials to hear more of his music, vibe with it, and stay up to date on what this up-and-coming star will be up to: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud!
See original article at VergeCampus.com