June

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You may not yet have heard of him but hip-hop artist June has been makin’ moves for some time now. This South Bronx based sensation has been spittin’ rhymes since he was a wee thing (think kindergarten wunderkind on the mic) and has stuck with this passion ever since. A sought-after songwriter, as a teenager he ghostwrote lyrics for bigger names in the game, then transitioned into singer extraordinaire, vocal expression never far from his heart. When he met music producers the Soundmen, June’s sound really took off and it’s been hits and no misses ever since. June’s latest single with Remo the Hitmaker, the catchy, Auto-Tune heavy “Watch My Moves” recently leaked to local radio stations in New York and soon found its way onto the Internet; look for it on iTunes soon. With his giant smile, infectious laugh and winning attitude, it’s difficult not to fall for this complete package comprising personality, talent and drive. Beyond his solo success, June has collaborated with several well-known’s, among them multi-platinum producer Ron Browz and platinum DJ Webstar. Read on to learn more about this educated, opinionated and entertaining up-and-comer.

“The background I come from showed me history. I went through hip-hop different from the average dude my age. I know my history, as opposed to just doing rap…”

Format: How’d you get started in music?
June: I come from a music background. My parents owned a nightclub when I was young, like 6 years old. When I first got turned onto music I was about 7 years old. My brother was about 11 or 12 at the time. My brother [used to sneak] out to the DJ booth [and] DJ. My brother snatched me up, ‘yo, get on the mic while I DJ!’ The club was jam-packed. So, I go up and start rappin’. Everybody’s lookin’ up, like, ‘who the hell is that?!’ We rockin’ the crowd. My mom recognize[d] my voice and she whooped my ass. It was well worth being able to hone the crowd. That’s when I realized that was somethin’ I wanted to do.

Format: What happened next?
June: From that point on, I worked on my craft as much as possible, started recordin’. That’s when I started doin’ the writin’ thing, up until I was about 18 or 19. I started writing R&B. I didn’t know better at the time; I was unaware of royalties. I was blind, very naïve. I figured [to get paid] $500 to do somethin’ I love has gotta be the life. Eventually I started doing it the right way.

Format: With whom have you worked?
June: Ron Browz, DJ Webstar, Pesh. . .

Format: You and Pesh have got something in the works right now, correct?
June: We have the “Bubble Pop” single. We havin’ a big party in one of the biggest strip clubs in the Bronx. It’s comin’ up April 29th. [Pesh] has a record that we’re gonna skyrocket.

Format: What else do you have going on presently?
June: My single that I’m workin’ on right now [featuring] Remo the Hit Maker. He produced [my track] “Watch My Moves”. We co-wrote the chorus together, but he’s singing [it]. I got two verses.

Format: And you are also working on an EP, right? Can you tell me a little more about that?
June: The EP I’m gonna put out will be a street EP. It’s gonna cater more to the hip-hop crowd. A lot of my [tracks] are a little trendier sounding. This one’s gonna be a little tougher, a little darker. It’s still gonna have the pizzazz of June. It’s not gonna take away from my authenticity.

Format: Who might guest perform on this EP?
June: The only features that might be on there will be my immediate, ‘day one’ people, like Pesh, Remo [and] Kool. Soundmen did 95% of the production; shout-out to Scott Durday and Justin Jamison. When you hear the shit we put together, it’s crazy. The EP will have probably 15-20 tracks.

Format: Usually an EP is considered short.
June: We’re breakin’ the mold, man. At the rate we’re goin’, every day we got another hit record. We work all day.

Format: So when is this due to drop?
June: Monday April 26th 2009 is the official Internet release date, but it broke on Hot 97 last week.

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Format: Congratulations! So, bound up with the music stuff, are you doing what a lot of artists are doing and branching out into other realms, branding and making it 360º?
June: Definitely. We gonna be sellin’ Bubble Pop boy-shorts. They’re Victoria’s Secret boy-shorts [featuring] the Bubble Pop emblem. There’s a t-shirt and boy-shorts. It’s a set.

Format: Back to your EP, do you have anyone in particular doing your cover art?
June: Actually, I’m lookin’ for an artist right now. We are picking and choosing among different artists. If you know anyone…

Format: What about Justin Jamison?
June: Justin is a genius, man. Let me tell you somethin’ real quick. I don’t wanna get too sidetracked, but Justin drew up an animation of me in 48 hours. He drew a complete animation of me for a [track] we have called “Pop the Glock.”

Format: I love that song! Is that the one with the French chick? Is it gonna be on the EP?
June: Yeah!

Format: Amazing. I’d love to see the animation. So, would you mind sharing a verse from “Bubble Pop?”
June: The hook goes, [singing]: Take a stick of gum and get your chewin’ on and shake your hips left to right and get your movin’ on, and tell your DJ bring it back ’cause that’s your favorite song, and tell the DJ bring it back ’cause that’s your favorite song, and make your bubble go pop, make your bubble go pop!

Format: That’s hilarious.
June: Pesh wrote the hook. It’s got a mean bounce. You hear the beat? He kept it real simple. For Pesh, that’s extremely simple. He’s one of the lyricists I admire.

Format: How long have you known these guys?
June: Remo and I ended up sharing the same management [Samuel Music Group]. As soon as I met him it was like the little brother I never wanted. [Laughs] I love him to death. We been workin’ on joints. We got about five [songs] done the first week [we got] together in the studio. And I knew Pesh probably a decade and a half. We been workin’ on music, me, him, Ron Browz, T-Rex, Murder Mook, Paper Over [Pussy]. That was the foundation, the initial Money Ave. We started like that. I actually only had production from my brother and Browz until my brother passed away in ’07.

Format: This is the brother who was spinning when you were a kid?
June: Yeah. The universe is weird like that; I lost my brother but I gained two brothers, Scott and Jamison. And they happen to be producers as well.

Format: How did you initially meet the Soundmen?
June: Through a mutual artist. They did a record for an artist and the beat was just crazy. I was like, ‘I gotta meet these motherfuckers!’ The first beat I ever got from the Soundmen was “Cakey”, it was the biggest [song] so far. We got a lot of big [tracks]. I can’t wait. I’m excited. Shout-out to Soundmen once again.

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Format: So, do you usually operate collectively? Do they put together a beat and you rap over it or do you go to them with the lyrics already?
June: It works both ways. I can have an epiphany at, like, 4am; I just leave it on Scott’s or Jamison’s voicemail. Or we’ll just be sittin’ at the crib, just fuckin’ around and ideas just pop. Scott loves to be like, ‘you gotta rap to this!’ With J it’s more of a collective thing. Scott likes to challenge me. J will challenge me once in a blue…

Format: What do you see happening in the next six months to a year?
June: Realistically, either I’ll have a pub deal or we’ll have an imprint at a label. We make beautiful music and the world needs to hear that right now. It needs a change. Not to take away from anybody that’s in the game, but there’s no fresh faces, especially in New York. We need a fresh face. Besides Maino – shout-out to Maino – there really is no new face right now reppin’ New York.

Format: Any imprint, any label in particular?
June: I just want to be where we can stay as contained as we are. I don’t want to go anywhere that’s going to stagnate that. I’m [not] going to be biased to anyone’s opinions or directions, I’m [just] not gonna let them take away from who I am.

Format: Who are some of your musical influences?
June: I’m inspired by several musicians; I like Tito Puente [Jr.], Doug E. Fresh. I like a lot of old school artists. The background I come from showed me history. I went through hip-hop different from the average dude my age. I know my history, as opposed to just doing rap. And that’s what sucks, especially with technology; all the fans of music just record music. I come from an era where we respect Heavy D, we respect Rakim, all the dudes that rocked for free, [or] damn near, so that they could open the door for hip-hop to be makin’ money. And a lot of young cats really don’t respect that anymore.

Format: Speaking of technology, what’s your take on the vocoder?
June: I got vocoder on this single, for, like, four bars and then, at the fourth bar, I say ‘Stop it!’ and it cuts the vocoder off. The line goes [singing]: Yeah we gettin’ drunk, ain’t gotta buy the bar, and you ain’t gotta Twitter to know where we are. Then I say ‘Stop it! You ain’t nothin’ like this. I persuade dyke chicks that they like – yikes!’ “Watch My Moves”. That’s the single.

Format: Right on. So, is the EP gonna be eclectic? There gonna be any slow jams?
June: It’s gonna be a mixture of different sounds. I’m not gonna have ballads, of course. I might have somethin’ real close to a ballad; I got another joint on there me and Remo did. It’s called “Dontcha”; it’s more of an R&B kinda pop track. I got mad joints. I got some stuff I been workin’ on with Kool and Pesh that’s gonna be a little more tough. It’s gonna be crazy.

Format: Any other guest artists featured that listeners can look forward to?
June: It’s pretty much home base, like I said, my day one dudes. It’s gonna be primarily me [and] Pesh. I have one [number] where I do an all-star with all the underground dudes; Oun-P, Murder Mook. I’m actually trying to get legendary Doug E. Fresh’s sons. They’re called Square Off. Shout-out to Trips and Slim; they crazy wit’ it. I’m talkin’ to Cory Gunz, lookin’ to get him on it. That’s gonna be the only track [with] multiple features. This [release] is really to showcase my talent. And if I showcase my talent, I gotta showcase who I am. Pesh and Kool are people I’m wit’ on the day-to-day. The [songs] reflect that. It wouldn’t be like, ‘oh, he just threw his boys on there ’cause they his boys.’ My motherfuckers is hot! When you hear it, you’re not gonna think I put them on there ’cause they my boys; you gonna know I put them on there ’cause they hot! Bubble Pop. Don’t forget.

More Info: www.myspace.com/itsjuneallyear / www.itsjuneallyear.com

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Nell Alk

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15 comments

  1. NICE ARTICLE, LOOKS LIKE YOUR ON YOUR WAY……”WATCH MY MOVES” HOTTTTTTT ! THE DJ MUST BROUGHT IT BACK ABOUT 9X @ THE PLAYERS CLUB !

  2. Its the one and only Mr Intro b.k.A Codizzle great article famo. June a tang got talent like a midget being able dunk. Keep doing what you do and as you passing through wave at the haters Summer starts in June ieeyeeye.

  3. FOR EVERY ACTION THERE’S A REACTION! PROBLEM IS….. WHEN WE “ACT” NIGGAS DONT KNOW HOW TO “REACT”!! KEEP DOING YA THING, NIGGAS AINT READY!
    FUCK YA CALENDER! ITZ JUNE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Tuff article my nigga…the ball is back in our court (NY) keep up the good work…we almost there…see u at the top!!

    Signed off by‚ Naza!

  5. Tuff article my nigga…the ball is back in our court (NY) keep up the good work…we almost there…see u at the top!!

    Signed off by, Naza!

  6. diva vixen says:

    One of June’s #1 fans. Can’t wait for that ep to drop…as for now I will just have to keep rocking my “watch my move” single and stay tuned. BXtrodinare via Brooklyn

  7. BigBizness says:

    Yo shout to the homey June! Its great to see a brother shining & doing through hard work but more importantly…talent. Its time for the game to let talent in not just gimmicks. Maino said it best:New York, support New York!

    Staten Island’s own

    “Big Bizness”

  8. PROGRESS in motion>>U deff earned it brova>>Cop the EP ppl!!!!

    “VEGAS” from THE BRONX NOT NEVADA. .HaHoW!!

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