🎤 Jrusalam x Beaumonde | On His Album Drop + Website Release
Hello all, it's your ole pal Shep here. Super excited to welcome you to a special interview with the very talented Jrusalam, a musical artist from Raleigh NC and a good friend of Beaumonde's. In this interview, we get a peek into the life of a Star Man and learn a little more about the concept behind his upcoming album, Melothesian. Read on to dig into the interview, and when you're done check out the new website our team created for Jrusalam - you can snag Melothesian from his shop when it drops tomorrow (12/12) at 12 noon.
Jru is a Raleigh NC native whose work as a rapper, philosopher and starbody is inspiring a reputation of mythological proportions. Ask anyone who has attended the NC State Cypher, where Jru is considered an originator and rap guardian — no one holds a crowd in their palm like Jrusalam. I got together with Jru to hear some of his thoughts on Melothesian, (his forthcoming album).
Why did you choose to title your new album “Melothesian”? How does the concept of melothesia manifest in your album and what does it mean?
Melothesian is a summation of a lifelong pursuit of a vision I had as a child. I think it started with my dad. When I was a kid, he told me he had a dream when he was a kid that he was holding a grain of sand in between his index and thumb, and this grain was the whole world. Melothesian is that grain of sand grown into a whole world. Melothesia is an idea in astrology that ties the zodiac to parts of the human body, so its a metaphor for the macrocosm being reflected in the microcosm, as in the axiom: "as above, so below."
The beat of a rap song is a vital accompaniment to the lyrical component – who made the beats for “Melothesian”? What sort of interplay was there in creation between you as rapper and the person(s) who made the beats?
Melothesian features production by P.A.T. Junior, Ace Dizzy Flow, B squared, Lazarus, and PURP. Generally, I select a beat and I play with it until I can translate what it says to me. I had a hand in influencing a couple Ace Dizzy Beats, the samples were my ideas.
What has influenced you in the creation of “Melothesian”, as well as in the development of your artistry (paintings, books, people, other rappers, etc.)?
Life! Working construction, my son, love life with Danielle, the Cyph, family, my god brother Ty, Raleigh, mythology, the stars, my mentor Mr. Chen, the Tao, my Dad, my Mom, so many people who influenced me. This project is specifically inspired by a fever dream I had when I was 14.
What sort of rituals are associated with your creative output? Is there a certain time of the day or physical space when and where you work best? What are some of the distinguishing characteristics of your creative method?
I wake up every morning and make coffee, loosen up, and freestyle until I'm writing. I try to write as much as I can and capture as much inspiration as possible. The Cypher is also a powerful ritual that opens up my creative channels. I'm constantly freestyling and capturing ideas. Also, paying attention to the stars is incredibly inspiring.
Is there a habit you’ve found especially conducive to creative success? If yes, what?
Melothesia. Utilizing the hand mnemonic on the album cover.
The cypher opened me up, brought me out of my shell, gave me a platform, connected me with artists all over the world, the cypher gave me a singular goal to focus on and achieve, a source of inspiration, strength, family, love, joy. My son was born from the cypher, I met my love at the cypher. I found my tribe and myself at the cypher. It gave me something to point to that I could believe in. I've seen the cypher bring the city closer together and be a wellspring of good vibes to all who partake.
What, if any, other art forms do you partake in when not writing raps? How do they relate to or support your music?
I like to draw out my ideas and create visual realizations of thoughts I have, my talent in visual arts lends insight to creating visuals for my music.
What book(s) are you reading right now?
ASTRONOMICON by Marcus Manilius
Melothesia in Babylonia
When is the next chance people will have to catch you performing live??
SATURNALIA, at Deep South in Raleigh, NC on Dec. 15th.