Mic Check: Young Joc Interview

The millennium hip-hop world is all about the pride, the culture, and the experience of the South. As the time ushered in a new age, so did it also ordain southern hip-hop, particularly that of Atlanta, as one of its most fertile breeding grounds for producing crops of prolific rappers. These artists flip a mellifluous vernacular and drawl when articulating some of the most colorful stories about growing up in southern ghettos – be they city or rural. No matter how edgy or boastful some of these tales might be, most of the time they are necessary for redefining and broadening the musical landscape.

Adding his chameleon-like style to the Peach State's field of offerings is Atlanta, Georgia-born Yung Joc. After grinding in the streets and doing what he had to do to maintain his rap credibility, the College Park/SWATS-bred MC is getting his chance to shine through the tutelage of Block Entertainment/Bad Boy South. Poised as Atlanta's next big hip-hop star, Yung Joc is set to break topsoil and emerge fully-grown into hip-hop culture's mainstream.

Mixtapetalk.com: Alright Young Joc, let’s talk about the new single you have out, “It’s Goin Down,” how did that come together for you?

Young Joc: Well, me and Nitty was in the studio, and he was like “Joc you have to give the streets something new to say, and if it ain’t nothing new, just give them something they already been saying, just make it fresh to them.” So, I went home, thought about it, and when I came back, I realized I had a nice hook. Then [Nitty] started the melody around my hook, but as he went on to produce the track itself, the track out grew the first hook. That’s when we realized that we weren’t going to rush the record. It sounds great, so let’s take our time, come back, and do a full record. I dropped all three verses, left, came back, and put a hook on it, and it was done.

Mixtapetalk.com: Were you surprised by the response you received from that track?

Young Joc: Not really, it just felt right, you know.

Mixtapetalk.com: Now, I’ve heard that Block was so impressed with you, and what you were doing, that he signed you on the spot.

Young Joc: Damn near; it was so much talk around the city about this new [rapper] named Yung Joc, and folks were asking him why he wasn’t messing with [me]. So, he got in touch with me through Carl Moe, and once he did that, he was like “I’m going to come and check you out one of these days, when you’re performing.” I was like cool, but didn’t think nothing else about it. I looked up and he was at [where I was performing]. Sh*t, he seen me rock the crowd and said your family [laughing].

Mixtapetalk.com: So, Block knew he had to have you on the team, without thinking twice.

Young Joc: Well, he knew what it was. He can tell, because we already talked, so he knew where my heart was.

Mixtapetalk.com: Where you performing “It’s Goin Down,” at the time?

Young Joc: YUP!

Mixtapetalk.com: Atlanta has had a strong buzz for the last couple of years, what are you bringing different to the table?

Young Joc: Well, when people ask what I’m bringing different to the rap game, period, I usually say personality, cleverness, etc. But, since we’re talking about Atlanta … that’s what Atlanta does anyway. Right now, aside from the Atlanta scene, I’m giving you a mixture – not to hard and not too soft. I got something for the ladies, thugs, country heads, trap boys, and n***as that’s just like “let me hear what this n***a has to say”.

Mixtapetalk.com: What was life like for Yung Joc, growing up?

Young Joc: I was a troubled child, man. I was smart as hell, it’s just my mouth kept me in a lot of damn trouble. You know, I was one of those kids – I was ahead of my time; you couldn’t just tell me some sh*t and expect for me to believe it. I mean, if you tell me the sky is blue, you have to prove it to me. It can look blue all day, but [eventually] you go have to tell my why it’s blue. So, I was just one of those kids that was always into sh*t. I wasn’t bad, stealing cars and sh*t, but I was very mischievous.

Mixtapetalk.com: So, what turned you onto rapping?

Young Joc: When I was little, my momma use to have Fish Fries and smoke outs on Friday nights. Shiiiiiiit they’ll be playing the music loud, and I’ll peak around the corner to see what they were doing, and she’ll be like: come dance baby or rap this song, right here. So, when Saturday morning came, it was time to clean the living room. Me and my brother would be in there re-acting everything we seen the night before. That’s when I realized I can do this sh*t, if I can stay on beat.

Mixtapetalk.com: Since being signed, how has life changed for you?

Young Joc: The Recognition has stepped up, creditability is bigger, that stability is greater, and security is awesome, and I’m more focused [laughing]. You know, I’m just working 3 times harder than I was already working.

Mixtapetalk.com: Now, you have the new album coming out…

Young Joc: New Joc City, dropping May 23rd.

Mixtapetalk.com: Who’s all featured on there?

Young Joc: Can’t tell you.

Mixtapetalk.com: Why not, what’s the big secret?

Young Joc: Nah, it’s not a secret. That’s just to make you say: well, damn, who’s on the album that he can’t tell us. This sh*t better be good [laughing].

Mixtapetalk.com: [Laughing]. Alright, there are tons of mixtapes that features your single, but are there any plans for you to drop your own mixtape?

Young Joc: Yeah, actually, I’m about to drop one in a few weeks, called “Welcome to My Block”. It features me, Diddy, Block, and Boyz n Da Hood.

Mixtapetalk.com: What DJ do you have co-signing?

Young Joc: It’s a Gangsta Grillz …

Mixtapetalk.com: So, what else should we look out for?

Young Joc: In the future Joc is going to be doing some crazy sh*t. I’m talking about producing videos, real estate, and producing [music]. I’m just talking about a lot of sh*t, which my hands are already in, people just don’t know about it.

Mixtapetalk.com: Anything else you want to tell our viewers?

Young Joc: Yeah, I just want to let everyone know that I’m an every day cat, and I put God first in my life. To the up n coming artist: hustle smarter, not harder. Perseverance is key; plan your work and work your plan, and you’ll be alright.

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