Marcus: Interview With Justus Clarke

: Having spent a lot of time with your project[Living It], I can say that you seem to be bringing influences not from the soul era, but the 90's R&B era. How accurate is this description? What sound were you trying to capture?

Justus Clarke
: Very accurate, 90's R&B era is probably one of my favorite R&B periods. I was trying to capture this sound, a little of the 80's (Prince, Janet Jackson) and with the 90's (Teddy Riley, Mary J. Blige, e.t.c). Everything you hear on the album is everything that I was growing up with from the time i was born to the time i was around 13-15 years old.

:This project clearly focus' on relationships, is this all inspired by the same girl? Is there a connection between this project on how you specifically view love?

JC: [laughs] Alright, not even going to lie, half the record is about one girl (LovelyLady, Livin' It, Runnin', some of BitterSweet & Brandywine). Few people know who she actually is, but I doubt she's even heard the record yet. Other songs were just what I thought of "love", telling stories and what not.

TWD:What was your intended goal with this project?

Livin It which was released March this year

JC:The album was really supposed to be released when I was around 13, but my voice was changing and I was sitting on loads of material, so I just waited, kept writing and then recorded when I was 14 and 15. Me being ambitious, I was just trying to prove wrong anybody who said that my music wouldn't catch on and gain a fanbase.

TWD:On this project on songs like Running there is a clear alteration on your voice. It's almost as if you wanted to present yourself as a one man band. Where it feels like we have different lead singers depending on the song. Was that the idea?

JC:Runnin' was supposed to be in another key. The background vocals were actually supposed to be pitched/altered, but i when I pitched up the music, it sounded better than the other pitch, so I kept it.

:What was your favorite thing about this project? What do you wish you could have changed on it?

JC: Completing the mixing was probably my favorite. Actually siting there and listening to 2-3 years of work was "Bittersweet". Only thing I would've changed about it was the synth volume on Beat You To It [laughs], other than that, nothing.  

TWD:It is unusual to see a full fledged singer and self producer. What are the challenges in balancing those two perspectives on a song? Where maybe your production is more interesting than your lyrics or vice versa?

JC:Wow, never thought about it like that before [laughs], I've been doing this for 10 years now (singing, producing, writing). It was never really an issue as long as it was something that I wanted to sing on. Lyrically, I either let the production tell me what's going on, or I'll just write whatever I'm feeling. At the end of the day, I have to like everything about it, so I guess that's the balance.

:As a one man band, how do you go about producing?

JC:I always have music in my head, so I will just record what's in my head. Garage Band is the only program I use for now, I might switch up programs, but I don't really see the need to right now.

TWD:If you had a 30 second pitch for your album? What would you say?

 JC:I would probably tell them, "If you're looking for some fresh R&B nostalgia, there's no reason Livin It shouldn't appeal to you."

Download Here : Livin It


Shout outs: Justus ClarkePeace, Love, Unity, God Bless and Keep Safe


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