Hip-HopVibe.com Staff Writer
The city of Boston has a deep hip hop history, despite the city not being as established as other cities. With guys like Javi emerging, this will soon change. He is on an impressive run and he has a lot of work, on the way.
Javi recently branched out and launched Cosa Nostra Records, his new record label. The rising artist is fusing several music genres into hip hop, furthering its expansion. As he is rising, Javi is doing a lot of work, making sure his next project does well.
Recently, Javi took time out to speak to Hip-HopVibe.com’s On The Rise about his work. When he came through, he spoke on the Boston scene, and his own choices. Also, he showed he has a lot of love for everyone.
Read the entire interview below:
Seeing how you’re focused on crossing over into the Latin market, how have you felt about Cardi B making inroads, with such records like “I Like It?” I think it’s dope! I started listening to Daddy Yankee in like 5th grade so seeing the Latin and American hip hop game start holding hands is dope. Once I really get on I’m tryna work with everybody in the Latin world from Mario Domm from Camila to Farruko. It’s dope going to clubs and hearing Puerto Rican niggas like Bad Bunny killin it in the clubs out here in LA. I’m half Puerto Rican and half El Salvadorian so I grew up listening to Alex Ubago, Enrique Iglesias, Juan Luis Guerra, Camila, Sin Bandera, Luis Miguel, Luis Fonsi and Sin Bandera. So being able to work alongside people I grew up idolizing is important to me.
What was it like working with Corey Ellis, for so long, and amassing so many streams? Oh, that’s bro. Yeah, when I was in Nova we was kicking it most of the summer and were just knocking out mad joints. A lot of them never saw the package but it was dope to be able to vibe with bro and just cook. That whole tape I recorded and mixed in my basement so to see how much traction it got on Spotify and Facebook was dope.
Understandably, you branched off to do your own thing. What is the biggest difference about having your own situation, as opposed to being a part of a movement? Before I even get into that, I gotta let ya’ll know that I still got all the love in the world for my Nova n*ggas. Before I let my manager, at the time, know what I wanted to start my own label, I FaceTime’d each one of my people on the roster individually and let them know my reasons for wanting to branch off and take my situation into my own hands. Everybody respected my decision and basically gave me their blessing in doing my own thing. When I told my manager I could see he was sad, but gave me his blessing even before I explained to him that I needed a whole team that was just focused on “Team Javi”.
The biggest difference is now I have a group of people dedicated to making sure what I bring to the table can be showcased on a worldwide scale with minimal distraction. Before I felt like I was doing everything on my own without the support group I needed. I’ve always recorded, written, and mixed and mastered my music. I had my videographer situation with Zachary Greaton (who’s been one of the biggest factors in my success) before Nova. I’ve also done a ton of traveling and made my own connections the past few years and that’s a big reason why I’ve done well as an indie artist. It’s helped me work with bigger artists as well as get me on platforms like Shade 45. I’ve always taken pride in being self sufficient but I felt like my situation was only gonna get me so far because I didn’t feel like I was getting the push and focus I needed on the back end.
Now, my managers Sheik & Seemoe Dukketz are constantly putting me studios all around Los Angeles to record with poppin producers like Reno, Shonuff, and Hendrixx Smoke; which is new to me because I’ve never liked recorded outside my own studio and giving someone else the reins on the boards (which I am now learning to do). They’re also bringing me to the right plugs in terms of merch, marketing, and all other avenues. I wouldn’t say I’m no longer part of a movement but I’d now say I’m a part of my own movement. Cosa Nostra Records is going to be one of the most powerful Labels in the next few years. We haven’t signed any other artists yet but once I really start putting everything in motion I’m putting all my niggas on who’ve shared the same drive I’ve had these past couple years.
Can you tell us about the Both Sides tape that you put out, earlier this year? Both Sides was the first solo body of work I was really proud of, as well as the first project under our imprint “Cosa Nostra Records”. It’s been a culmination of some of my favorite songs from 2017. The theme has been something I’ve been running with since my first EP, Champagne & Hennessy.
I feel like every person has at least two sides to them on a personal level as well as a stylistic one. The first half was more turn up and the second half showed softer elements. Even though the theme made sense, sonically it was all over the place. The tape had trap, rock, r&b, and folk type songs. I get bored doing the same genre all the time so it’s hard for me to make a project that is completely similar sonically. Since 2017 I feel like my sound exponentially got better so i’m excited for ya’ll to hear the unreleased joints.
How did you and Cory Gunz link up? Me and Cory linked through my bro Hooligan Bam who’s out the Bronx. Cory pretty much did the track off Bam’s cosign. So I pulled up to the BX from Maine where I was going to school at the time and we met in the studio. Dude was super down to earth and super humble. I remember him just sitting on the floor writing on his phone while the beat played. Then me and Bam went to the corner to grab a burger and when we got back 20 minutes later he was finishing his ad libs in the booth. First thing he asked me was if I fucked with the verse and I let him know I appreciated him coming as hard as he did on it. That nigga Cory is still one of the most vicious lyricists out here so it was an honor to have him on the track. It’s no wonder why Lil Wayne has always gunned so hard for him.
We actually even shot a video to “Do Not Know Me” a few months later on a rooftop in the Bronx. But, he had a family emergency so he came later than the scheduled time, so the preparation we had for it got thrown off.
The video didn’t come out bad, but me and Greaton felt it ended up being a little underwhelming, so since the song was still hot, and we had other fire videos coming out like “Let Me Know”(Directed by Daniel Sinclair), and “No Promises” and “The Plan”, we said f*ck it. The experience was dope though because I’ve had situations where artists with less accolades that Cory be on some Hollywood shit. So seeing bro be mad down to earth both times we met was dope. Cory def good business.
Do you have collaborations with any other big names coming up? After doing a lot of features last year, this year, I’m not really focused on working with too many big names. I’m really focused on getting these solo videos out, while working with the people I’m coming up with. Ya’ll might hear a Javi x Lil Boi Kantu track in the near future though.
Where can fans link up with you, on social media? Ya’ll can find me on IG at JaviGonzalezii, Twitter at JaviGonzalezii & Snapchat at Javielito_ii. HMU!
Watch “The Plan” by Javi below:
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