Step Back J is a Hip Hop artist based out of Santa Barbara, CA. He fell in love with music the second he heard Yeah by Usher on the radio, and since then he began writing his own music. Through the years he has refined and redefined who he wants to be as an artist and a lot of his work could resemble the works of J. Cole and Kid Cudi. Step Back J has a versatile style and uses creative punch lines to turn his music into his own art.

Tell us about your most recent EP’s! What went into the making of these works? I put out an EP back in January called Public Thoughts, and what i wanted to do with that project is create something deeper than all the surface level mainstream rap you normally hear. I feel like i was very successful in my creation of that project it was a good project to build off of this year. A lot went into creating my projects, as any artist will know. Plenty of nights missing out on sleep, and plenty of time spent away from friends, but plenty of good times and experiences through out the whole process.

What is your main goal for your upcoming release, “My Gallery” EP? For My Gallery, what i wanted to do was show my versatility as a rapper. The variety of songs in this project create a scene sonically comparable to the art in a showcase or gallery, hence the name of the EP. I really think the variety of music on this EP go well together and fit in a way you wouldn’t necessarily think of right away.

What would you say the most challenging part of writing and recording “My Gallery” was? The most challenging part of this EP actually came in the mixing and mastering process. I have a tendency to compensate and compensate and over compensate until i think the track is ruined rather than complete. With that, it took a lot for me to get to a point where i felt ready to release this project. Sometimes as an artist you just have to let go.

Who or what influenced you most while writing and recording this EP? I had a lot of influences while creating this EP. The most important influence however, could be explained on the first song called Gravity. Gravity is about the feeling i had putting this project together that i couldn’t be brought down. The feeling is what gives a rapper like me the confidence to continue making what he believes to be good music. On the interlude of the EP, I am eluding to mumble rap and creating a sort of comical version, taking it to the extreme. Its a very simple concept that i think a lot of people will enjoy.

Besides the release, what is next for you in 2017? I actually have few things lined up for the rest of the year. For the summer, I have a series planned of remixes to popular tracks called J-Mix Mondays, as well as another EP in November. I also have already begun shooting my first ever music video for one of the singles on this EP called Drive. I have a show planned for next month and hopefully plenty more for the rest of the year. On top of that, I have started pushing towards radio play and continuing to grow as an artist. Lots to look forward to this year.

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