Talking Common Sense with the most exciting rapper on the scene.
If you ask Siri to “play the best rap album”, J Hus’ debut record Common Sense will be the first thing to pop up. Landing at number 6 in the official charts, and with his track “Did You See” still in the top ten, the first studio album from the 21 year old London-born rapper is establishing him as the hottest name on the scene right now.
Combining afro-beats, fearless grooves and incredible lyricism, the album is a fantastic display of J Hus’ unique take on rap music. And the title? In his own words, “It’s common sense to listen to J Hus. Why would you listen to anything else?” We can’t help but agree.
Still enjoying what J Hus describes as the “overwhelming” response to Common Sense, we sat down with the East London rapper to find out all about him, the album and what he’s up to next.
Hey J Hus, how are you?
I’m excited, my album is out. Have you heard it yet?
I mean, I’ve only listened to it everyday since it was released… You’ve just been on tour! How did it all go?
Tour has been great. It’s been good to get out and perform to my fans. The crowd gets crazy, Manchester and Bristol were the best.
What was your favourite moment?
Aaaaah… that’s a tough one as there have been a few of those. Getting the album together and out to the world. Oh and being signed to Epic in the US isn’t so bad.
You took a night off on tour to jump on stage with Stormzy at Brixton O2, what was that like?
Sick! Everyone went mad, it was crazy!
You appeared with Ghetts on Stormzy’s track “Bad Boys” and you also collaborated with Dave on the amazing “Samantha”. If you could collaborate with any artist, dead or alive, who would it be?
I don’t even know right now lol, there are loads of people that I’d love to collab with have died, loads to mention.
Going back to the beginning, what music did you listen to growing up?
All kinds of music, afro beats, grime, rap, slow jams, everything! That’s probably the reason why my music is so different I guess.
Who would you say are your main musical influences?
Ooow, I don’t really know there was too many. But in school they used to call me 50 pence, because I was a big fan of 50 Cent.
Your Mum is from Gambia. Is that a source of inspiration for your music?
Yeah, that is a big influence on my music. She used to listen to afro beats in and around the house.
“I feel as though I am the same old J Hus just more grown, and my music has more meaning and I’ve experienced a lot more, as a person and musically.”
You’ve previously said that your sound is like everything you’ve heard before, but also like nothing you’ve heard before. Can you tell us a bit more about this?
I’m doing something different. It’s fresh and my perspective.
You released your first mixtape, “15th Day”, two years ago. Can you tell us about the process behind that?
Me and the team basically decided that we should do a mixtape and we literally did it in two weeks and uploaded it on the 15th day.
How do you think you’ve grown as an artist since then?
I feel as though I am the same old J Hus just more grown, and my music has more meaning and I’ve experienced a lot more, as a person and musically. Many ups and downs, all making me who I am today.
You recently released your debut album, Common Sense. How are you feeling about it?
It’s insane. The reaction from everyone is overwhelming. Thank you to everyone who is supporting me.
I saw that you retweeted a tweet saying that you’ve had the biggest song every year for the last three years – “Dem Boy Paigon” in 2015, “Friendly” in 2016 and “Did You See” in 2017. What’s it like getting that kind of reaction to your music?
Its a tweet that I feel as though it has some truth, like the songs especially in my shows goes OFF!!! And after each song I have gone away for a bit.
You’re still only 21! Does your age impact your music in anyway?
Not in anyway. I feel as though in life I have experienced a lot go things at my age and I got a good team around me who always give me good advice.
Two weeks after your album release it’s your birthday, according to Wikipedia! How are you going to celebrate?
I don’t really celebrate my birthday so I don’t know… wanna plan something for me?
Sure! An what else do you have planned for the rest of the year?
More Hus, thats all I’m gonna say at the moment, but I got a lot of things that may surprise some people.
J Hus is playing Wild Life Festival this year. 9th – 10th June at Brighton City Airport. More info available here.