Welcome to Jupiter.
Scarborough-based recording artist Jupiter Jaxs first caught my attention on Twitter as I was flipping through our mentions. He got me with his unique sound, and the high degree of energy that exuded through the short video clip he tweeted. His personality is charmingly quirky, and it shines through his lyrics and delivery. He’s animated and has a very Moka Only-esque feel to his character, but with a completely different style and tempo. He’s a multi-talented, creative energy, with a non-stop need to create.
If he’s lucky, he’ll be able to sustain a Moka-like work ethic to really push his promising career forward. And the 22-year-old is off to a good start with three full-length projects already available on Spotify including Welcome to Jupiter, This That Jupiter and Just Another Xtraordinary Stori.
“Me and Rondo been locked in together since high school though, we push each other day-to-day tryn’ make it happen.”
Jupiter has released five videos in the past year, and relentlessly promotes them with his 1000 family at events and on social media. “Heat Rock” was actually my first introduction, but “Tekk Diss” really pushed my interest to find out what he was all about and what he was planning.
At a time when music seems more saturated with rappers than ever before, it’s always refreshing to hear an artist really embrace the qualities that make them unique, and apply them unapologetically to their craft. Jupiter does all of that, and then some.
He had originally set his sights on pursuing a successful ball career – even leaving Toronto to ride out part of a basketball scholarship at Cape Breton University – but eventually left the program to pursue his true passion in music.
Jupiter’s evident athleticism and musical talents are only matched by his slick design skills; something his music career has already been benefiting from. He’s the creative mind behind his own artwork, and is starting to see an increase in demand for his merchandise, where he’s also the leading creative spark.
The young Galloway rapper will be releasing a new project on June 21st so I wanted to connect with him early to give everyone a solid introduction in advance of the release.
During a recent Q&A session we touched on variety of topics including his plans for the remainder of the year, his transition from athlete to musician, the 1000s, and more.
Check it out below, along with the video for “Tekk Diss.”
Q&A: Jupiter Jaxs
HipHopCanada: Jaxs, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. Let’s start off with some more background info for those just getting familiar with you. Where does the name Jaxs come from? And what is the ‘Jupiter’ connection to your name.
Jupiter Jaxs: I go by Jaxs, which is just a short form of my last name to be honest. Last name Jackson, slimmed it down to just Jaxs. Everyone in the neighbourhood was calling me that as well. I am my own person, and get crazy, so I talk my own languages and slang and always acting a fool or making someone laugh. I was often told I was from another planet with the way I act, and I would reply, “Yeah… I’m from Jupiter” (Laughs). Just because it had a J at the start and my name was Jaxs, so due to the J in both the planet and my name, I also go by Jupiter, or Jaxs or Jupiter Jaxs (Laughs). Also my favourite number is 5, no cap, I wore the number my whole career doing sports and Jupiter is the 5th closet planet to the earth. #JaxsFaxs
HipHopCanada: What was growing up on Galloway like?
Jupiter Jaxs: Pretty coool for me. I was hooping from age 7ish, so when I moved here about SR kindergarten, I attended Galloway Road Public School and had a bunch of friends in the area after a few years went by.
HipHopCanada: Which artists from the community did you look up to when you were first getting in the mix of things musically? Toronto as a whole?
Jupiter Jaxs: I never really looked up to any to be honest, I was a hooper. I had a different mind-state growing up. I would hear about all the rappers in the area and caught myself playing it more than mainstream though. I was rockin’ out to some Sha Hustle, Kill em Kazz aka 2kz, Gillatien and me and my boys would make a 1-2 record but just for us to listen too.
HipHopCanada: If you can only pick one song to introduce yourself to a potential new fan, which song do you go with, and why?
Jupiter Jaxs: I would choose “Tekk Diss,” simply because it has a vibe that everyone instantly gets when they hear the song and that was the first video I released on IG spitting bars. Every time someone recites the song to me, it is usually the first couple bars that go like “N****s better chill like Netflix, Still on the block like Tetris, Spent a lot of cash on a Necklace… than I went to the plug like Tekk Diss!” and I love it every time! I might even drop new bars on the same beat.
HipHopCanada: “Tekk Diss” has definitely been doing good things for getting your name out. How did you transition from being an “Instagram rapper” to switching your focus to cutting records and releasing projects? You dropped the Remixtape project back in 2016, but it feels like this year you’re really pushing things to another level.
Jupiter Jaxs: I would purposely drop videos on IG, and no actual music anywhere, just teasing… and teasing because I could not find a studio yet. I would make songs with my Apple headphones and GarageBand on my MacBook, (which I still do now) and would make songs, and then IG videos to the songs… and which ever videos people liked the most, I formed it into a mixtape. I let it go in June 2016. Everyone kept commenting, “Release a song already!” so now I have three projects out since I’ve begun. This year I have a different vision, as well as some new support behind me so I’m plotting things out better this year. With even better sounds.
HipHopCanada: You completed a year of post-secondary education before deciding to go all in on your music career. Can I ask what you were studying? Do you have any plans to finish your degree?
Jupiter Jaxs: I was in a General Bachelor of Arts program at Cape Breton University on a basketball scholarship. When I first got there, I had already been rapping but like I said before, just for me and my boys to hear. One day I showed my teammates some songs and the responses I received made me feel like a rapper. My coach was not the best, so after my first year I left, and Jupiter was created. But I do plan on finishing up what I started, for myself and because my momma wanna see me shine on that stage again as a student, not artist (Laughs).
HipHopCanada: Who are the 1000s? How did the crew come together and how do they factor in to your overall plan? Which members of the squad are playing key roles in your day-to-day growth as an artist?
Jupiter Jaxs: The 1000s is something I’ve been really shaping my life to be around. It is more of a lifestyle to me, and if you partake in the same lifestyle, which is grind for what you want, you are 1000 material. Never settle, do not put 100% into it, put 1000. Go the extra mile if you want it. The 1000s is a supporting cast of people which varies from my producers (Rondos808s, GodFlow, Universe and 808 Push) my Overdose brothers, Outtaline brothers, my director (Jesse Truman), cameraman (Nick) and the supporters who push me to become a better artist.
Me and Rondo been locked in together since high school though, we push each other day-to-day tryn’ make it happen. One of my newest songs he made the beat on FaceTime with me and then I recorded it while on FaceTime, (Laughs) we really go crazy! Over 50 songs on Rondo beats alone. Das really my boy.
HipHopCanada: Merch is something a lot of artists rely on for income, and finding an artist with merchandise for sale is not very uncommon. But most of them don’t have the ability to say they designed everything themselves. Which piece are you the most proud of to date? What’s your process for designing something new?
Jupiter Jaxs: I’ve always been into creative anything, so when I think of covers or anything it usually is my idea or I had a say in the part of the creation. I just love to create. I usually just take a picture of what I drew and get my boy Malik or Q to get me right digitally.
My most proud work up to date, is the ‘went to the plug’ design! The details on the graphics is crazy! Me and my boy went crazy on it, the controllers on the button and everything is all custom. When I usually make a song, whatever bar is the hardest, usually will become a shirt design. The majority of my shirt designs are related to my music, or my movement. I know it best, so I have to create the graphics.
HipHopCanada: Which Canadian artist or producer are you eager to work with the most?
Jupiter Jaxs: I dropped four mixtapes in two years, good quality. I never heard of anyone do such thing as a Canadian artist. I would love to link up with Murda Beatz though, I know imma see him down the path if all goes well.
HipHopCanada: Will you be handling the artwork on your future singles and projects?
Jupiter Jaxs: For singles, I usually just say an idea and we Jupiterize it and get it going from there.
HipHopCanada: When can people expect your next release? What will it be?
Jupiter Jaxs: June 21st, gonna drop an ’empressive’ project, (and that is not a typo on empressive). All About Raxs Universeity (also intentionally spelled that way) will be dropping with 9 songs, mainly produced by Universe aka the newest member of the team. Three Godflow songs on there too. Some different vibes, more real rap with this one. Of course, I can never leave out Rondo, he’s got the last song on there! We’ve got an EP coming this summer so I just had to throw in a song from there!
HipHopCanada: Tell me about the new project. How will it differ from your previous bodies of work?
Jupiter Jaxs: With All About Raxs Universeity, this new project is mainly produced by my Boy Universe! but I also brought my boys rondo and Godflow on their as well. The title is a play on words from my single off my previous JAXS album (Track 2, “All About Raxs”) and his name is Universe. I fused the names together since I have my own swag and presentation, I’m educating everyone like they are in University! A lot of word play on this project!
Track 8, “Cheapshot,” drops this Sunday. Listen to “All About Raxs” on Spotify and Apple Music for a preview of what I got in store for June. All About Raxs Universeity is a nine-song project, with new visuals being cooked up! The intro video will be out sometime in May! “All About Raxs” video.
HipHopCanada: What do you have in store for the remainder of 2018?
Jupiter Jaxs: I got a lot in store. More new music, new visuals and new designs! I wanna do some feature as well, so do not be shy, let’s rock out people.
HipHopCanada: Thank you, let’s wrap these questions up on a lighter note. What can we find on your playlist right now?
Jupiter Jaxs: Ouuu, my playlist right now?! A whole lotta Lil Dude, Peewee Long Way, Giggs, Hoodrich Pablo Juan, Migos and a lot of unknown rappers.
HipHopCanada: Are you into sports? How far do you think the Raptors have what it takes to bring home the championship this year?
Jupiter Jaxs: I am for all the #WeTheNorth get up, but… James Harden for President and MVP. #HoustonTakingIT
HipHopCanada: What’s your go to meal after a performance or recording session?
Jupiter Jaxs: My go to meal usually would be Wendy’s, it is right on the way home (Laughs). But for every session, I need a Booster Juice. Booster Juice, I need that sponsorship, talk to me.
HipHopCanada: Top 5 rappers, dead or alive?
Jupiter Jaxs: I knew this was coming… but this is no order! Lil Wayne, Cam’ron, Chief Keef, 2 Chainz, Wiz Khalifa.
HipHopCanada: Thanks again for taking the time to speak with us. Anything else you’d like to add?
Jupiter Jaxs: Thank you for having me my brother, any time. I got a new single dropping in May, look out for that and a new visual dropping around the same time!
When I hit 58K on SoundCloud, imma drop a new song on there as well.
Interview conducted by Jesse Plunkett for HipHopCanada