Jonwayne Video Interview @ FoF 2-Year Anniversary by Dubspot

Moving right along in our Friends of Friends video recap, we have rising FoF star Jonwayne and Alphapup artist delivering his potent brew of swampy L.A. hip-hop, and talking with Dubspot’s Thavius Beck about his SP-404 setup.

Jonwayne, perhaps more than any other FoF artist, seems to align more squarely with rap and hip-hop’s aesthetic, opting for less beat grid obscurity, and more straight-ahead slap. That’s not to say Jonwayne isn’t ready to buck your sonic expectations about rap production, as he contrasts even bass and drums with tipsy synth melodies and retro-futuristic Game Boy noises.

So far Jonwayne has signed a track here and there to FoF compilations like Pop Massacre 2, but released his debut full-length titled Bowser (after the infamous Super Mario boss), to L.A. record store and label Alphapup. For Bowser, Jonwayne seems to channel the big green turtle’s stomp with all of Bowser’s irony as both villain and anti-villain, depending on the Mario game. Neon 8-bit melodies create satisfying tension with the swing and crunch of Jonwayne’s drums, uniting a soundscape that Jonwayne has travelled in late levels of puzzling games, and the glee of hearing J Dilla for the first time.

Like his FoF peers, Jonwayne isn’t only drawing on the ‘90s pop and hip-hop golden era, but an adolescence filled with video games, revolutionary music technology, and the potential outsider teenage lifestyle these fascinations created. The result, heard on lush, delightfully nerdy, if endearingly cocky Jonwayne bootlegs like Gucci Mane’s “My Chain,” is an example of the disarming boyish affection FoF is tapping into.

Other Jonwayne rap bootlegs are available from his Tumblr website, as well as one of his first free demos, which he says he made out of Pokemon comic book covers before selling them out of his mic case. Jonwayne makes it clear that when Pokemon comic book connoisseurs get together to bootleg remix Gucci Mane, there can be comedy, density, and fragility—a role well played in the cast of Friends of Friends.

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  • Friends of Friends (LA): Label Spotlight & Interview w/ Leeor Brown | Dubspot Blog
  • 8/10/2011

[...] anniversary party in Los Angeles. The series featured FoF artists Shlohmo, Groundislava, Baths, Jonwayne, and Anenon, wherein each artist chatted with us about their experiences with the FoF label, their [...]