INTERVIEW BY JIBRIL OSMAN.
Born Joshua Heath in Savannah, Georgia, JBAN$2TURNT has become a rising rap star in the rap world today. Moving and growing up in Atlanta, JBAN$ took his love for music to the next level and really focused on it being a career after being convinced by a high school friend at the time, who would later become Lil Yachty to make music and after that, he dove head first into the field and hasn’t looked back since. Recently, he released a mixtape called, “Sail or Swim,” and I had the chance to talk to him about his early upbringing, moving to Atlanta, meeting Lil Yachty, his new project and what he hopes the future will look like.
So, can you tell me about growing up in Savannah and how the music scene was in the area growing up?
I mean growing up in Savannah, when I was younger, there wasn’t really a music scene. Like Camoflauge was the only rapper that really made a big buzz out of Savannah. So, it was a lot of influence like Wayne, Hot Boyz, like a lot of New Orleans music, that was the type of music we listened to a lot.
So, at what point did going into music become an idea for you?
I mean that was probably around high school in Atlanta. I was always around music my friends were doing music. Like, I was inspired by so much like Young Thug and Future, Migos, just being a kid, seeing them, I just knew I wanted to do music and take it seriously and for it to be my life. I always a big fan of music ever since I was a kid, but when I got older, when it comes time to make those life decisions, like what do you want to do, I already knew music was something that I had passion for.
Now being in Atlanta from Savannah, what was your impression of Atlanta in comparison to your home?
Fast paced. Savannah is small, not like a small town, but like everyone knows each other and in Atlanta, everything is so spaced out. It was just a fast paced, more different, more city feeling. Savannah is more country, like home feeling, I had to get used to Atlanta.
So, when you started recording songs, really getting into your craft, was it something that was hard to get into musically and practicing, tell how it felt in the beginning?
Well, in the beginning it was never hard, I would just hear the beat and just instantly start rapping, freestyling, but me, looking back, looking at old songs, It’s just progression. Because when you first start rapping, you gotta catch your sound, you don’t really know the cadences or stuff like that, so me and going back listening to them old songs compared to the music I’m making, there’s a difference in flow in everything, there’s progression.
Now when it comes to Lil Yachty and the sailing team, how did you guys connect?
I met him in high school, I wasn’t even making music, I was playing high school basketball, our school was like close to each other. I just knew him from high school, he was making music then, but nobody knew his music or anything, but besides from music, we were already friends. He’s one of the ones who encouraged me to do music, even Playboi Carti and Yung Bans, really all the young people in the Atlanta scene, especially the younger generation, I knew all of them before music, we were all cool before music.
Now talk to me about this new project and it being out?
I mean, this new project was focused on me and me doing what I gotta do aside from the group stuff, just focusing on JBAN$ and doing what I can do as a solo artist. I feel like “Sink or Swim,” is just the intro, the start, like when they see me drop this, their like oh he’s doing his own thing. This is just the beginning the intro of everyone getting to know me for me as a solo artist.
And when it comes to the features on the record, can you talk to me about some of your favourites and how some of them came about?
Yeah, my favourite feature is probably “Magical Poof.” And this is came about, I was in the studio with my friend EarlThePearl, the producer, had just made a beat for me and he pulled it up and he said I want you to get on this. And I was in the booth rapping and once when I started Quavo came in and let’s do this together and I was alright I’ll go first and when It was done, I kept playing it. So then Yachty heard it and liked it a lot and then Yachty got on it. Like it wasn’t planned, I was just recording it and Quavo heard the beat and I guess he liked it. And “Boost” I was recording it and I was listening to it and Offset was like, this hard, it reminds me of like old Migos stuff like when we first got on, he’s like make an open verse for this and he just got on it, so it’s like the same-thing with Quavo, it wasn’t planned.
Now on a final note, you’re only 20, what are some of your goals that you’re now working towards for the next couple of years?
I mean right now, I want to get my brand bigger, I want it to be bigger than rap, the endorsements, the movies, I just want to be an all-around brand and an artist, and as well as a rapper, I just want to be able to make this an everlasting thing. I don’t want it to stop anytime soon, I want to be a music mogul, I just feel like the sky’s the limit.
You can listen to Sail Or Sink here