Hustle Gang has a new fresh sound coming out of the camp and she goes by the name of Tokyo Jetz.
This Jacksonville, FL native is here to make her mark on the game and has no plans of slowing down anytime soon. While being discovered on Youtube by T.I himself, Tokyo credits her fans for supporting her throughout the process. Here’s a close up of my recent interview with Tokyo Jetz; Enjoy!
Can you share with us the creative process and the backstory as to how you connected with Tip and Grand Hustle?
Tokyo Jetz: Well…I first actually had my first conversation with Tip through Instagram (laughs). I make a lot of videos in my car of me rapping over other peoples beats. He happened to comment on one of them and I was like I need more then that (laughs). So I DM’ed him to ask him for some advice, and he told me to send him some music. At the time I had no original music out because I was just doing these covers. I sent him all of the covers I did and he flew me and my brother to Atlanta. We met up at the studio and I guess that was like my make it or break it moment and I’m still here.
As a female MC where do you draw inspiration from?
I mean I’m surrounded by dudes on our label so I naturally draw inspiration from them. But honestly I don’t rap about the typical things females rap about. I rap about what I’ve been through and what I’ve seen my family members have to overcome. Of course Tip hands down inspires me. My favorite rapper is Rick Ross. As far as females I listen to a lot of Nicki Minaj, she came up when I was in middle school. I listen to Remy as well, but mostly I’m inspired by males.
Which freestyle would you say was the one that gained the most recognition to launch your brand nationally?
It was when I rapped over Yo Gotti’s ‘Down In The DM’ beat. It went crazy! I hit a million views in a day. I think that happen because people wanted to argue about it. You had both sides (male and female) weighing in. In the freestyle I’m basically saying that if you’re with a dude and you hear he’s talking to another girl you’re suppose to approach your dude not the girl. So like the comments went crazy. They were tagging their baby daddy’s and calling people home wreckers and all that…but some of them still missed the point…it’s like you mad at the wrong person.
What was the craziest comment that you saw to make you be like “wow did that really just happen”?
Honestly, I would have to say my mom on there arguing with somebody (laughs). I had to call here and be like momma what are you doing (laughs)? She was in the comments going crazy, talking about “you don’t know my daughter” and all that (laughs). That by far was one of the funniest and craziest at the same time.
You’re with Grand Hustle/Hustle Gang now; how has this experience helped you build your brand as Tokyo Jetz?
Before coming into the Grand Hustle situation I had a fan base already and I had a movement. Everything has since multiplied especially since coming off or tour. I was able to reach fans that I’m sure would not see me scrolling through their Instagram. I have been doing way more shows. My social media has seen a big increase. Everything has worked out for the better for me.
You talked about being on tour, what was that one of the craziest or unforgettable tour moments that you can share with us?
We had a girl actually come on to the tour bus after one of the shows…and ummmm….she peed on herself (laughs). Yeah..like we were all just chillen after the show and she was in the front part of the tour bus just listening to music and dancing and then out of no where she just started peeing on herself.
After that we were like she’s got to go.
Moderator: Bruh! (laughs) we’re going to leave that one right there!
What was your favorite city to hit while you were on tour?
Well I had two favorite cities. I loved LA. I just love LA period. Anytime I can go out there I’m there. But…my favorite show though was hands down Spokane, Washington. It’s a different vibe all together. I’m used to performing in urban clubs or like places that are mostly filled with African Americans. These are typically people that if they don’t already know your music they off top shut you down. So with the Spokane crowd no matter who stepped on the stage to perform they vibed with us and they were going crazy. It was just like love and you could feel it when you were on stage.
Keeping it right there, you have a project that you just released, can you tell us a little about the creative process and the backstory, along with what song on the project sticks out to you the most and why?
This is my first project that I put out through Hustle Gang so of course it means a whole lot to me. It’s like my baby. But it’s titled ‘Viral’. It’s basically a gift to my fans. So before I dropped it on any streaming platforms or outlets that you could purchase it from, I actually gave it away on MyMixtapez first, which is probably something no one else would have typically done. But yeah it was a gift to my fans because they are the reason I am where I am right now. I couldn’t have made myself go viral without them.
Of course it’s titled Viral because of my start, but….my favorite song on their is probably ‘My Story”, because it’s me telling you what I have been through and where I am and letting people know that it’s not easy. I feel like with rap people just want to give you the glitz and glam and sometimes the lies. I don’t have a Ferrari so I don’t have a reason to rap about a Ferrari. So yeah it’s like my story and my truth. I felt like that was my first time actually speaking about my personal situations in life. I felt like people would judge me if they knew certain things. Like I felt like people would judge me if they knew my dad smoked crack or if they knew my mom had cancer. You know it’s certain situations that people don’t like to speak on and that was my first time actually opening up about everything so that has to be my favorite song.
Of course I had to get London Jae on the hook which makes it ten times better.
Everything that happened was all God’s intentions. I didn’t do anything the way that everyone told me that it needed to be done. People kept saying to me that I was doing these covers for no reason, but I knew there was a bigger purpose and a meaning behind it.
You have an opportunity to see the industry from a different perspective working with one of the most powerful independent labels in the world. Can you give us your perspective on the music industry right now from an independent artist perspective? What do you think are the pros and cons to being “signed”?
I feel like no matter what situation I would have put myself in, like if I would have went with the other rappers that were trying to sign me or a major label, I just feel like being signed period is just a cosign and that means you have to work ten times harder from the time you wake up until the time you go to sleep. I feel like getting signed is a cosign and a bigger check. So I wanted to be cosigned by somebody who was real as me or had some of the same core values as me, so Tip was the perfect person for me to sign with. A lot of people would have probably jumped into a situation with a major label, but I didn’t really feel like that was the right route to take for me. I haven’t had anything to make me feel like I needed to change my mind.
I have free reign to make whatever type of music I want to make. I don’t know if a lot of artist have the ability to do that. I still get money where other artist probably don’t see a penny which is amazing to me. But the cool thing is outside of all of that I’m still with somebody that I can pick up the phone and just talk to and make sure that at the end of the day that I’m good and being taken care of. When people sign I think sometimes their well being goes out of the window and the relationship weakens. I feel like if you don’t have a relationship with whatever label you are signed to or whatever person you are signed to, if things start to fall apart you get dropped….then what?
What you tell a younger you about what it takes to be successful in this industry?
Keep going, and ignore what everyone else has to say. Along the way there will be people who try to tear you apart and bring you down but just don’t stop keep going.
Recently Nicki Minaj tweeted asking fans who she should bring on tour with her next year. Your mentions started going crazy…Why do you think you should go on tour with Nicki Minaj?
(Laughs) I mean I feel like that’s something people would want to see. Plus, I feel like the people who are on top of the female hip hop game like a Nicki Minaj should be bringing in the younger girls that are doing it anyway. Female rap looks like it’s not united right now. Even if it’s not me she should bring another female rapper on tour. That’s just something the world needs to see in my opinion.
I feel like the female rap game is like the NBA compared to the WNBA. There are a hell of a lot of male rappers but female rappers are far and few in between. It’s like you can name 10 NBA players off rip, but can probably only name on one hand how many WNBA players you know. What are doing to change the perspective and persona of the female rap game?
I mean it’s a big difference for me, because I do have social media that I can use compared to the MC’s who came before me. I feel like I just do things a lot different then other female artist who have done anything. People want to hear what I have to say and I’m taking a different approach.
Whats next for Tokyo Jetz, and do you have anything coming up that your fans should put on their radars?
We of course have the Hustle Gang project coming out soon. My birthday month is October and we are planning a tour. I want like 30 birthday parties (laughs). I want it to be huge.
I’m putting you on the spot right now; if you had to come up with a name for your birthday tour what would you call it?
Hmmmmm… probably ‘TokDay’ or something like that..what ever it is it’s going to have to be dope! We gonna go crazy like that whole month is my birthday!
Before we let you go; can you share with us your most memorable or unforgettable birthday?
I would have to say last year. Tip threw me a birthday last year in Atlanta. I had like seven birthday parties last year but this one though (laughs). He did the birthday party at V Live and we threw a whole lot of money and the drinks were flowing. Let’s just say I had some great pictures to remember the night (laughs) and I’ll just leave it at that (laughs).
Much love to you Toky Jetz and we wish you much success!
Be sure to keep up with Tokyo Jetz on all social media platforms.