Mental illness can be a thorn in your side, just ask J-Bru.
After 13 years in the music business, the veteran emcee seems to be just hitting his stride, but you’d never know it if you asked him.
“I just always feel like nothing I do is good enough, it’s a part of who I am, but also a part of what makes me me, and I know my fans appreciate the honesty of my music,” Bru said.
J-Bru has suffered from depression for almost 20 years, and even though he is compiling accolades, including recent wins at two different awards shows (2013 Artist of the Year – ANSMA, Hip Hop Recording of the Year 2012 – Music NS and Urban Recording of the Year 2012 – Music NS), he finds a way feel like a stranger!
It is ironic that J-Bru has been getting so much critical claim as of late, seeing as his new album, ‘Stranger in my Hometown’, is all about how he has been in the music game for so long, yet he feels that he should be given more respect as an artist.
J-Bru never gets complacent though, and after completing nine cross-country tours and three international tours in thirteen years, he released ’12 Years and Counting’, a greatest hits CD for has loyal fan base. The collection of mostly older songs sold 1300 copies and garnered almost 15,000 free downloads in three months.
‘12 Years and Counting’ gave his fans, old and new, a taste of what he has been known for, honest lyrics and a no-holds-barred approach to storytelling. And that is exactly what you get on ‘Stranger in my Hometown’.
With topics ranging from heartbreak, religious beliefs, racism, and the general state of music today, the new record is sure to spark some conversation, positive or negative. And that’s just what the emcee intended.
“Oh yeah, for sure! On this new record, I am just being myself, and at this point in my life, I’m sick of hearing this or that about topics that affect everyone. People act like their opinions are 100% fact, and while I didn’t set out to do it initially, Stranger in my Hometown is a way of me asking people to question their beliefs, question everything!”
And so, here comes the new record, a reflection on the music industry and J-Bru’s place in it. With the title track, Bru proclaims “While people buying for the rebates… I’m busy supplying people crying for a real taste… Nobody lying, even try to make me seem great… I’m still a stranger in my city, trying to chase my dreams late”.
J-Bru always wears his heart on his sleeve, and he’d have it no other way.
Bru brings out his usual darker side on the new record, while also showing the booth experience he has gained over his 13-year career, bringing some lyrical heat only a few rappers today possess. And with guests like Classified, Choclair, Quake, LinA, Miracle, Kaleb Simmonds, Jay Mayne, D.O., Selekwa, Kayo and Psyc da Prince, ‘Stranger in my Hometown’ is a heavy hip hop album with a local Halifax flavour.
Known for his hype live show, J-Bru has opened for some of music’s biggest stars, including; Classified, Kardinal Offishall, The Game, Ludacris, Good Charlotte, Snoop Dogg, Bubba Sparxx, Choclair, Maestro, Snow, Nas, Busta Rhymes, Cappadonna, Ghostface Killa, and many more…