5 ON IT
"Truth is like poetry. And most people f*cking hate poetry." This quote was presented to viewers during the movie Big Short. But for Tokyo Jetz this her truth is not a fairytale but her journey is worthy of a story book ending. With pride, grace, respect, and SUCH A FUCKING LADY. Tokyo Jetz is positioned to be the next star. So let's get into the story as told by her herself.
For those who don't know, why do they call you Tokyo Jetz? My eyes are like really low, and when I was younger people wanted to call me China. But I knew a lot of people with the name at the time so I didn't want to be called that, and my best friend came up with Tokyo so I just ran with that. And I'm a Curren$y fan, I don't know if you ever heard of any of his music, but he had somethin called J.E.T.Z, which means Just Enjoy The Shit but he changed the 's' to a 'z'. So Tokyo Jetz.
When did you really start gettin into rap? I've done poetry for a while, and the person that got me into music was my older brother, he was like we should try to put it on a beat. This was back maybe in like um.. 2012. And the first song I recorded was like..this was back when ringtones were hot and stuff. (laughing) So we went.. I don't know if you would call it viral, but the whole entire like southern area in Florida went H.A.M. with my ringtone. And I kind of layed back for a while and then started back doing music last year. 2016. And that's when I had my first video go viral when I rapped off Yo Gotti's DM. I just been workin ever since then. That was crazy. How did the idea for rapping in the car and doing that beat come about? I've done um videos in the car for awhile but that video in particular was actually a joke (laughing). It just goes to show that people will like... ran with stuff..and run far with it.
Can you tell me a little bit about your new project "Viral". Yea of course. Now it's set for the project to release the week before Memorial Day. I titled it "Viral" because of basically how I got my start with everything. With my videos going viral of course that's how I got noticed by umm.. most of the people I work with now. And we have a couple of dope features, of course I have features from T.I.P and people on the Hustle Gang label.. like RaRa, I have some production from RaRa as well. And I have a song with Que , who has the "OG Bobby Johnson" song. And then also a track with Trae The Truth as well. So it's a lot of dopeness all together, nuthin that you have to skip over, no album fillers.
So what would you say makes this project different from your last project "Flyy Shit Only"? With "Flyy Shit Only" I was doing music because people said I could. Like now I actually enjoy doing music, like I like how I sound, I like... enjoy doing shows, so everything is fun now. It's something I want to do, it's not somethin I'm doing because everyone says I can do it, like I was forcing my self to do it back then. It's a little bit easier now because I'm actually enjoying it.
Do you know of one moment or something that happened that made you feel like you just came into yourself and felt more comfortable with rapping? Heckkk yea.(laughing).. I did a show in Savannah and umm... I did a teen party early in the day and I did an adult party later that night and the show was like packed. And I'm like this is a show that I'm doing by myself, so I'm sittin here lookin at all these people like, all these people are here to see me, like I wasn't openin up for no one. And when I came on the stage they started screeeammin.. I was like these people are happy to see me, so I was feedin off that energy and I was smilin the whole entire show. I probably looked like a lunatic. (laughing)..Yea that was the first time I started having fun with it. When I did a show in Savannah they made me feel embraced and loved.
Congratulations on getting signed to Hustle Gang, now that you have that machine behind you, how do you feel like your music will change or evolve? Or do you feel like things will be easier now? I wouldn't say things will be easier now, I think that kind of makes it sound like your not gonna work as hard as worked to get where you are now. So I guess I wouldn't say it's easier, umm... I think it has changed my music to the point where I'm better, because I'm of course the only girl in the situation, so when we're in the studio everyone does a verse and I'm like.. ahhh .. they tryna compete with me. HaHa. Haa.. So I think it makes me go harder, I definitely wouldn't say it's easier at all cause I'm workin if not harder than I was workin before I got in the situation.
Cleo's in the O town,
So back to your project "Viral". What's one line that you think is going to go over people's heads? I say a lot of dope stuff. Umm. I got a song with Que, it's like a strip club song, so in Florida we have a strip club called Cleo's. So the last of the song says "Cleo's in the O town, make it rain, it might go down, set it off like Queen Latifah", Like basically tieing those two things together. Like her name is Cleo in set off, and Queen Latifah. That's the only one I can think of now, but I know it's dope.
Do you have one song that you feel is really emotional for you or it's hard for you to perform because it brings back a memory? Yea I did the 10 Toes Down Challenge. And I turned it into a song, and it's on my project, and I feature Lenard Jay on the hook. But everything I rap about is a true story, and in the song I'm basically speakin on what I been thru like thru my entire music career. And the first show I've ever done.. someone got shot... and died.. so I speak on that. And that's one of the reasons I stopped doing music. And right after that my grandma passed away. So it's a lot that I'm speakin on and it's all truth... and people feel that. When you get that reaction from them of course I'm going to feel the same way, because it's a true story. So I like performin because I want people to see my truth, but it's definitely hard because it's still situations that I'm still battlin today. I want people to be able to relate and feel what I'm feelin. towards makin the situation better and gettin over it.
Is it one classic beat that you want to freestyle on that you haven't? I gotta do somethin to some Pac. But what I notice is like.. my fans are more receptive to like current music. So I did sometihin to a Biggie Smalls song "Juicy". And I know it's dope as hell but I got more responses from older like older followers that I have. But things that I notice will go viral have to be current beats but I gott do somethin to Pac, they just gonna have to take it.
So who are your Top 5 Rappers? So like all time? Or like current? It's yo list. It's yo list. OK. I gotta put my disclammer in. This is in no order. But these are my Top 5: 1) So Ross (Rick Ross) is my favorite rapper..umm. 2) Ima huge Don Trip fan. 3) Pac of course. 4) I'm a huge T.I.P fan. That leaves me with 1 more. Hmmm... 5) I'm probably have to say Biggie.
Who's your favorite artist to listen to freestyle? It's weird cause Ima say somebody that's not even on that list. Have you ever heard of Starlito? Yea I've heard of him. I love Starlito's freestyles.
Since you are working with one of your Top 5 rappers. How does it feel to work with T.I.? Like I told you we all in competition (laughing). If he gonna do a verse I gotta go harder, and he feel the same way. If I go first everybody feel like they gotta come harder than me. It's weird cause Ima a girl but they don't care. Have you ever had to go back and be like..Nah you ain't killin me on this one? Only wit Dro (Young Dro), like if I'm doing a song with Dro and you go first.. like you have to go last when you doing a song with Dro. He does too much. He's the only person that makes me feel like that.
Why did you choose Hustle Gang over all of the other labels and opportunities that you had? T.I.P was one of the first people I met that respected me as an artist. And me as a female. Most people don't respect female artists, and I was happy to like... walk into the situation and see that he did. And he took me serious and asked me what I wanted, and didn't try to change me, because he saw something different. So I'm happy I'm in this situation and not any others because could've went waay left. And I might not be who I am right now.
What do you hope people get from this album, Viral? I want people to see my growth, like where I came from, where I am now, and hopefully see where I'm going with it as well. I want everybody to see me 10 times bigger than I was this time last year, and 10 times bigger than this next year.
What's something that you want people to know about you that they don't know about you? I just want people to respect me as a person. And know that I've worked for everything I have, nuthin was given to me. And..just stay with me it's gonna get even better. I JUST WANT PEOPLE TO RESPECT MY HUSTLE. even if you don't think I can rap. RESPECT MY HUSTLE.
What's next? THE WORLD. That's the goal. Of course we got the Hustle Gang tour comin up and my project (Viral) is coming out, again the week of Memorial Day. And we got the Hustle Gang album coming out soon as well. So it's a lot comin, just stay tuned and we gonna give it to ya.
Thanks again to Tokyo Jetz for the interview. Check out her social media below, and chek out her album "Viral" coming out at the end of May.
ALSO check out her single "On Some Other Shit" here:
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.