JJ Lafont is a Cuban hip-hop artist from Portland, Oregon who together with his longtime friend, created vibrant summer songs recorded, and mastered entirely on the iPhone. JJ Lafont released the single titled “Flowers” and we were enticed by this relaxing and soothing record that weaved the lines between lo-fi rap and melodic pop.
The organically structured arrangement of the tune is what captured the moment more. It was aesthetically pleasant, vibrant, and all around extravagant. JJ Lafont knows how to master the art of imagery through songwriting. It’s displayed in this beautifully written song. JJ Lafont has what it takes to stand out from the overcrowded hip-hop culture. He shows elements of classic boombox rap while remaining true to the art of lyricism. It’s digestible enough for the vintage rap lovers while translating across the field of contemporary hip-hop. “Flowers” was a peaceful song that had the perfect vibe blooming right before the long-awaited and highly anticipated summer season!
Listen to "Flowers" here and get to know more about JJ Lafont in our interview below!
Welcome to BuzzMusic JJ Lafont! Tell us about your record “Flowers”. What was the major theme surrounding this?
Thanks BuzzMusic I appreciate it. At first there wasn’t really a major theme I was going for. I was looking through beats that my friend and main producer S.I.G. Had sent me and I stumbled onto the beat for Flowers and immediately knew where I wanted to go with it. I knew I wanted a summer vibe that fit the flowery synths S.I.G. Had thrown on the beat. By the time I finished writing the song I realized I had a pretty cohesive theme all the way throughout. The theme I found in the song was more of a “summers around the corner” one. At the same time in the song, I'm telling the person it’s directed towards that, let's not get too ahead of ourselves and let's just enjoy the moment. It definitely is a love song and I kinda envisioned a picnic theme in the middle of a sunny day type of vibe. Altogether the theme is a love song filled with mostly the excitement of getting to spend sunny days together, mixed with a little bit of anxiety in the final lines of the hook when I say things like “summers coming so please don’t leave me” because it wouldn’t be a JJ Lafont song without a little bit of that.
What inspired you to write this song?
Living in Portland, Falls and Winters can be pretty cold and rainy which in turn can just be really mentally draining. As soon as the sun starts to show its face its natural for me to get excited and it usually replenishes my energy that was expended throughout the winter. Once spring came around I found myself in a better mood and wanting to write more music, something I hadn’t done much of during the other seasons. At first I was struggling on what to write about but I quickly turned my attention to what was around me and from there started writing Flowers, basically about my girlfriend. A lot of the inspiration was from her, but a lot of it was from looking within myself and my friends and seeing their relationships. It was also pretty easy to write when I have an instrumental like that just handed to me.
“Flowers” is a unique sound that differentiate itself from other hip-hop songs! How did you discover your artistry?
Thats a good question. The thing about artistry is that it isn’t a tangible thing. Its very fluid and theres no real way to measure its existence or its absence. I feel like I'm in a constant chase with it, always running behind trying to find what it is I want the final product to be. 5 months ago would I have written a song like Flowers? Possibly but probably not. Yet here I am and here it is. It's just as much a product of my environment and surrounding as it is a product of me. I remember a conversation I had with S.I.G about a year ago. I was in the middle of writing a song that sounded nothing like me, just a collection of sounds and raps that I thought other people would like. In between writing we would take breaks to listen to other music and a song which I still can’t remember the name of came on from his playlist. All I remember was it was a beautiful song and we both marvelled at it. “Why don’t we make beautiful music?” he said to me. I had an internal dialogue with myself. Why didn’t we make beautiful music? What even was beautiful music? I spent months trying to find ways to make beautiful songs without actually knowing what the meant. There is no way to measure beauty in music, it just either is or it isn't. Even now I ask myself the same thing and hope I leave that type of impression in my artistry on other people. I think Flowers is a decent start.
Do you have any specific lyrical arrangements for “Flowers”?
Not anything in specific. As with anything I try to do in music, its all just fluid and according to what I think feels the best. When i wrote it, the hook came first and then the verse came after. I tried to make the verse match the hook without limiting myself to just that. I was going to write a second verse for it before deciding to let the beat run on for the last half minute instead. Letting the chiming synths run their course and showcase a little bit more of S.I.G.’s talent. Shorter is usually better for replay ability, leaving the listener wanting a little more so I settled on one verse, and the hook twice.
What’s next for you JJ?
I have a project coming out this summer produced by S.I.G. Titled Live from a phone. If you guys liked Flowers you will love the other songs on this project and expect different styles. Everything is constantly changing in life as with music. So stay tuned for new music coming soon!
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