J. monty

J. monty has yet to drop a debut project, but he put out music videos alongside the first three singles he released in 2014.

The Atlanta-based hip-hop artist was a finalist in the Rapzilla 16 Bar Challenge at Legacy Conference.

Rapzilla: When did you decide that you wanted to pursue music?

J. monty: There are like three different segments: one was when I was 12 years old. I first fell in love with music, and all I ever did with my life was just make music. Second time was in college when I was 18 doing secular music, and I actually realized I could make something out of this. And then he third time would be after I got saved. I was 19, and I realized I’m going to use this gift for the Lord.

RZ: What has been the most memorable moment of your career thus far?

JM: Definitely the Rapzilla 16 Bar Challenge. It was recent, and it was also really competitive. A lot of stuff was just going on in my heart. It was real deep and meant a lot to me. We flew out to Chicago, and I’ve never done anything like that for my music.

RZ: What should fans be on the lookout for musically from you in 2015?

JM: I’m going to release a mixtape very soon. Everything’s written. Everything’s being recorded. Most of it’s being mixed right now. But before I release the mixtape, I’m going to release a video. I can’t reveal the details of this video. Just know that I’m getting props made for it that have been being constructed for over a year now.

Jericho

Jericho is a hip-hop artist signed to Los Angeles-based label Dream Records.

He released his debut album, Road 2 Redemption, on Nov. 10.

Rapzilla: When did you decide that you wanted to pursue music?

J: Real early in life, I wanted to be a WWE wrestler or a rapper. I grew up with my mom and grandpa playing music. On my grandma’s front porch my grandpa and friends would play Hank [Williams] Sr., Merle Haggard, [Johnny] Cash and George Jones for hours. Something about country music with the storytelling I loved. My mom was a gospel singer. I seen her hard work and ambition. We would travel to churches and she would sing. We got a glimpse of the tour life early on.

RZ: What has been the most memorable moment of your career thus far?

J: That’s hard to say, really. I’ve been blessed to travel full-time. I’ve opened for Lecrae, Mercy Me, Big Daddy Weave, for KING & COUNTRY, Young Buck, Brooke Hogan, etc. as far as that goes. On the music side, I’d have to say The Extreme Tour taught me a lot. The best is doing a concert and seeing people who never have heard the gospel and are struggling with addictions and they surrender to God and repent is a beautiful thing. But just my album Road 2 Redemption finally coming out was huge dream come true, really.

RZ: What should fans be on the lookout for musically from you in 2015?

J: I’m touring a lot, and I’m going to start working on a new album. I’m about to blend different artists even more so than I did on this album. This album had Jackson Cash, my mom, Bubba Sparxxx, Danny Boone (of Rehab), Jax Anderson, etc. This one is going be more collabs. I’m looking to hop on someone else’s tour also.

Joey Jewish

Joey Jewish, a rapper from Tuscon, Arizona formerly known as Dorian Grey, was introduced to the Christian hip-hop scene in 2012 on MC Jin’s album Crazy Love Ridiculous Faith on the song “Ridiculous Faith.”

In 2014, Joey Jewish released two free albums, Abstracts & Fragments under the name Dorian Grey in July and Scarsdale this December.

Rapzilla: When did you decide that you wanted to pursue music?

Joey Jewish: Since age 12, I wrote lyrics and recorded sparingly. Although creating music was always a passion of mine, it was simply a hobby until 2-3 years ago. I was working in a call center selling accounting software to the top 100 firms in America, and after several successful but mundane years, I had an “ah ha” moment. Over the years working for my company, I had built a friendship with the CEO of Grant Thornton, Stephen Chipman, who in one of our final conversations told me, “Joe, if remember anything we’ve ever discussed, remember this: Let your life’s pursuit be towards what you love doing, not what makes the most money, and you will always be happy.” Six months later I became a full-time artist, and my life has never been the same.

RZ: What has been the most memorable moment of your career thus far?

JJ: My most memorable moment thus far came one year ago after a show. A teenage girl approached me in Santa Barbara and expressed in tears how she was planning to commit suicide that week, but something told her to hold on to life. She thanked me for sharing my testimony and allowed me to pray with her to receive Christ.

RZ: What should fans be on the lookout for musically from you in 2015?

JJ: I’m currently working on a new project titled American Dream, which is set to release in late February or early March. This project will be extremely diverse and further abstract than my previous creations. There will be several features including artists from my team, The Majors. I will also be releasing a few singles leading up to an official album I plan to release in June. I am also looking to work with other artists and available for tours.