Artist Spotlight: Jerome Talley II (JT2)
Artist Pick Week #116
What he did with his prize money: got a condenser mic!
JT2 is consistency dropping fire on Beat of the Week! He has amassed a catalogue of 17 videos on the platform including an Artist Pick $50 prize in Week 116. Whenever you see his name, you know you’re in for some hard punch lines and haymaker hooks!
Born in Chattanooga, TN and now residing in Summerville, GA, JT2 wrote his first real verse in 6th grade. He jokes that it was “straight foolishness, but it rhymed”! He first got into music inspired by his mother, a well-known singer who was always freestyling and doing her own versions of radio hits.
Reflecting on his life experiences, JT2 shares some words of wisdom with us: “Something I think [that] has helped me with my music is that I’ve never felt dependent on music to get me where I am now. My hunger for success in music isn’t to ‘get me out the hood’ or ‘feed the fam.’ I live in a nice, quiet, boring neighborhood and I feel blessed to have come this far.”
He defines his greatest success as “Learning to fail forward!” He knows that struggles and failures are part of the journey, and if someone “isn’t failing or struggling at some point, then they aren’t going hard enough!”
He also sees what’s missing in music today: there’s “not enough music that addresses how to cope with struggle. It’s identified and perpetuated, but rarely solution-oriented or productive,” he says. He is doing his part to be “viewed as an artist of real impact,” providing fresh perspectives.
In his music, JT2 is doing just that. He tells us, “I like to rap about things that make people want to listen to my verses again just for content. The delivery has to flow and complement the beat, but the lyrics have to trigger thought to some degree.”
He sure made us think with this line from a recent Beat of the Week video: “Rappin’ ain’t a talent it’s a skill/Talent is evoking emotion with words that people feel/A double-edged sword that can damage a life or heal”
JT2’s favorite influences are 2Pac, Andre3000, Jay-Z, Nas, and Young Dolp, and he records with his kid brother who goes by “Re-Verse.” They are currently making music for a few projects.
Stay tuned for new music from JT2 this year! And peep the tracks he already has out now: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTS1XY7_pKw