A Story Interview with: J Clu
Raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, J Clu is a Cape Town-based artist who has been active on the music scene since 2017. With a musical foundation based on piano and guitar, J Clu has been able to incorporate these lessons into fortifying his musical prowess. Inspired by the growth of Soundcloud in South Africa around 2016 pioneered by the so-called “New Wave” J Clu first ventured into production. Striving to keep his music honest, Clu is candid about the fact that he sways from typical hip-hop/rnb content.
We sat down with J Clu to learn more about the rising musician.
Who would you love to collaborate with musically?
“In terms of my dream artist to work with, I’d have to say, Brent Faiyaz, as an artist he is super talented and I think his vocals would fit perfectly with the style of music I want to introduce.
Locally I’d have to say, Marcus Harvey.”
Who Inspires You?
“Musically, Brent, Roy Woods, Che Ecru, just to name a few. I like my sound to be unique and to fit in a bracket of its own but can still be mainstream.”
From your experience, how does music have an influence on fashion?
“Since I started music, the growing intersection between music and fashion has been immense. Ye and Travis Scott are prime examples for me and I think everyone in how fashion and music influence each other in many ways. Your sound is usually connected to your style and aesthetic and I think this is extremely important to establish your identity as an artist. Personally, my fashion influences come from people like ASAP Rocky and Pharrell”.
What are your views on musical artists being accepted as streetwear designers?
“I personally, love it when big artists collaborate with major brand names such as Nike, Jordan etc. I’d like to see some more niche collaborations however with bigger artists collaborating with less mainstream brands. I think Travis Scott and Ye are once again prime examples of how this intersection doesn’t only just work but is necessary to some extent. A lot of the hype around certain products and styles currently today wouldn't be possible without these collaborations”
What is your favourite hobby outside of music?
“It’s really hard to pinpoint any hobbies outside of music actually. Everything I do is for music and centred around music but I am trying to get back into martial arts and gym as well! I’m a black belt in Taekwondo so i’d really like to rekindle my relationship with martial arts.”
What is your favourite song you’ve made?
“Favourite song of mine for sure has to be my upcoming song- “Hold my Hand” featuring Blxckie and Ben September. It's not out yet but it's definitely my favourite.
In terms of already released tracks is “Test Me” from the Growing Pains Ep”
As someone who grew up in Johannesburg, lived in Durban and now currently resides in the Mother City, how would you compare them?
“Cape Town is good for the soul, beautiful but slow! Durban is the most vibrant and diverse in my opinion and Joburg is for the hustlers. Johannesburg promotes hard work and connections to survive.
I would personally say Cape Town number 1, Joburg Number 2 and Durban number 3 (Sorry Durban)”
What would you say to a young fan aspiring to make it big as an artist?
“I would say unfortunately it's a lot more than talent. You have to have a hard work ethic and level of consistency to form a rounded skill set so you can stand on your two feet in a pretty damn cutthroat industry. Stay true to yourself however and your sound always!”
What Can we expect from J Clu in the near future?
“ You can catch me at Daisies later this year in October, for sure it's going to be crazy. Real soon you can expect my project titled ‘BOYZWHOSTRAY’, some real features on this one and I can't wait for everybody to hear it.”
You can catch J Clu at Rockin’ the Daisies in October and come say hi and chill with him and the guys at Story.