The Daily Iowan talks to Juicy J before his Monday show


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Heavy bass and call-and-response lyrics make up the crunk-style of rapper Juicy J.

The artist will perform at 8 p.m. today in the IMU Main Lounge in an event hosted by SCOPE. Admission is available online and at the IMU Hub for $26.

Assistant general manager of SCOPE Kaitlyn Drake said the excitement in the SCOPE office is at an all-time high. The students have been preparing for the show by listening to tracks from the artist’s current album, Stay Trippy.

Though SCOPE has brought in rappers such as Kendrick Lamar this past spring and Childish Gambino in April 2012, Juicy J’s performance will be the first to come to the UI with his specific style of rap.

“It’s great to get a variety of genres to perform,” Drake said. “We’ve never had a crunk-style rapper come to the university, so we’re all very excited.”

Juicy J has been a part of the music scene for more than 20 years as a rapper, songwriter, and record producer. He said his learning experience as a musician was to be constantly evolving and that he is much smarter now with his career than when he began.

“I’ve alway been the same; I’ve always been a humble person,” Juicy J said in an interview with The Daily Iowan. “I don’t let money or fame make me feel bigger than I am.”

The artist is signed to Taylor Gang Records, Columbia Records, and Dr. Luke’s Kemosabe Records.

The former Three 6 Mafia member has, in a sense, reinvented himself for his current Juicy J persona, and he said he would love to collaborate in the future with his Mafia roots.

“What I’m doing, I’m doing on my own and calling all the shots myself. When you’re in a group you have to compromise,” Juicy J said. “Now it’s all about me, taking care of my business, and doing what I have to do.”

Juicy has been interested in the music industry since he was 13 years old. He would ask his mother to bring books home from the library so that he could educate himself on his future career path.

The artist said he did not always know he would be a rapper, but he knew he would pursue a career in music. Juicy J  defined his crunk-style of rapping as mixing the old music with the new.

The rapper has been affiliated with a party lifestyle but said he separates his social life from his career.

“I do what I do, and I party when I party,” Juicy J said. “I have to make sure that everything else is going smoothly. It’s about establishing yourself and doing work.”

UI senior Alec Finn has been a Juicy J fan after experiencing the performer’s rapping ability in Three 6 Mafia.

“He’s a very talented rapper, but I’ve always admired his work ethic as a musician,” he said. “He’s worked very hard to get where he is today — started from nothing and now has really made it.”

Juicy J’s current album, Stay Trippy, originated from his concept of staying true to himself, so that what you see is what you get.

“The album is all about the music; me being me, it’s all my creation, my idea,” Juicy J said. “I love creating music that I enjoy. It’s all from the heart, and that’s why people accept me. I don’t try to sound like anyone else.”

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