Detroit lyricist and Gifted & Talented, LLC. founder and CEO, JP ONE (short for Jackpot Tha Chosen One) presents the B. Hughes-directed music video for “Win or Lose”, the BJ Gates-produced lead single from Fire & Brimstone, his forthcoming project featuring Boldy James, Chel Strong, Pierre Anthony, Nep Jennings, Street Pacino, Motivation, Gain Green, and Rail Fresh. The production on the first installment of a trilogy set to be released this year is largely handled by his personal DJ/Producer, Pig Pen, but BJ Gates, Flamin Lacez, and SPC Productions also lend a hand. Following the death of his father at five months, JP spent most of his childhood in foster homes and juveniles. In his early teens, he was signed to Motown legend Barrett Strong’s Blarritt Records, but soon after found himself facing a nine-year armed robbery conviction. He released a mixtape exactly four weeks after his release. Three years later, he has several mixtapes under his belt, including Gifted & Talented and I Am Legend. He was recently nominated for Best Hip-Hop Artist at the Detroit Underground Hip-Hop Awards, while Gifted & Talented was nominated for best full-length project. According to JP, “‘Win or Lose’ is all about doing what you have to do to reach your goals. Most people have no real aspirations in life, so they will shoot your dreams down. They don’t believe it until they see it. If you spend your whole life worrying about what other people think, you will never reach your full potential, because people are going to hate you if you win and hate you if you lose, so it’s best to do what you gotta do.” Fire & Brimstone drops March 9th on Gifted & Talented, LLC.
How did you and Pig Pen form such a close relationship?
Me and Pig Pen have a lot of mutual friends, but my dude Nori took me to Tony Rizzo’s studio to record and he played a lot of Pig Pen beats. I didn’t commit to anything until after I had did a few mixtapes. When I started working on my last project, Gifted & Talented, I decided not to use any industry beats. Once I saw the direction the project was going in, I reached out to Pig Pen, and we’ve been rocking out since.
How do you feel your Detroit Underground Hip-Hop Awards nominations have afftected your career?
My nominations at the Detroit Underground Hip-Hop Awards have afftected my career, but not really in the way people would assume. It gave me the confidence to keep doing what I had been doing, because I have only been on the scene about three years and all of the other people that were involved have been around ten, 15 years, or better. It wasn’t exactly validation, but it was a wink from the pacemakers that I was on the right track. In the studio and in business, confidence is everything.
You have several mixtapes out already. Which have performed the best and why? Which do you feel underperformed and why?
My last mixtape had the best reception, because I had the most press for it. Each project is like a kid. I love them all for different reasons. The only project that underperformed, to me, was my first one, Tha Power Of ONE, because I released it four weeks after I came home. I had no money to push it and I wouldn’t have known how to push it even if I had had the money. I took my favorite songs from that project and put them on I Am Legend, with a few songs from the other two projects I had previously released, and went at it again.
How do you feel like prison time changed you as a rapper and a person?
All prison did was give me some time to think. The most important thing that I learned was to always do me. People look for every artist to resemble the other artists they know. People in Detroit expect for all the artists to look and sound the same. Staying in my own lane has been the most important part of my marketing plan. I’m like a breath of fresh air, so people are talking about me.
What’s behind the name of your upcoming album Fire & Brimstone?
The concept behind Fire & Brimstone is to destroy the current mentality of the modern artist and set a new standard. This project, and the other two installments of the trilogy, is all about the lyrics, even though the beats bang. Most people associate lyricism with conscious rappers or soft rappers, but I’m a real street dude that can actually spit. I understand the art and I’ve studied the culture, so I’m a lyricist without a doubt, but the streets give me my edge. I hear a lot of people complaining about the current state of hip-hop, but I’m actually trying to do something about it. Fire & Brimstone is me leading by example.