I had a chance recently to catch up with upstate New York rapper AMJ, who is also known as “Adam Janis”, and we spoke a little bit of just about everything.
AMJ resides in Saratoga Springs, New York and has been rapping for 3 year now. He not only enjoyed making music but also interacting and getting to know all of his fans. When hes not working or in the studio hes out chillin, thinking about music or with his friends appreciating the little bit of free time he gets.
Brandon: So tell us Adam, what all have you been up to lately?
AMJ: “Lately I’ve been working a lot and it shows in my personal and social life. The fam gets upset every once and a while that I can’t stop to see them more. Between work and music I just really don’t have much free time. I’m focusing a lot on my next project which I don’t have a title for at the moment, but I’m hoping to release that late March or early April. The whole project is being produced by Dao Jones and he scores a feature or 2 or 3 on there as well. I also got in touch with fellow New Yorker Sam Siegel and was able to get him on a song I really like and might be the first single for the project. I feel like now I’m ready to really make some waves in the clam waters of Upstate NY and really get the area and people behind the few of us up here really grinding at it.”
Brandon: So you recently opened up for Chris Webby’s “Homegrown Tour”. What was that like?
AMJ: “It was awesome man, I mean this is the 3rd year in a row I’ve done the show with him up here so that says something in itself. But it was a great set, the energy from all my hometown fans and friends was awesome! I also had a few features with me doing songs. Dao Jones, Rocka Boy and Selli PaperPlane all did their thing as usual.”
Brandon: Your most recent mixtape “Class of My Own”, what can you tell us about it? What gave you the green light to with the name you chose?
AMJ: “Well the name for me was easy. I felt I had developed my style , a few signature flows and sounds and I was now in a “Class Of My Own” . To me this was the first project that things really started clicking during the writing an production process. I recorded all of the project at CKMJ studios except for “Like I’m On It ” and “Worth It” which I recorded at Game7 Studios. Working with Donte “Beenz”(Game7)and Dao (CKMJ) really helped with my creativity and having those guys there to bounce lyrics and concepts off of was reassuring at times , and others it made me question myself and rewrite better material. I think “Class Of My Own” was also the first project that got me that local acceptance. Like “Oh yea Adam really takes this serious did you hear these songs” haha. So that was nice but I still don’t have the support of as many people as I’d like and as many as I need. That’ll come though.”
Brandon: Have you ever gotten any negative feedback from anybody about your decision to making music?
AMJ: “Yeah negative feedback will always be there. But I see and hear less of it the more I continue. Turning a hater to a believer is always a great feeling. But when I first started my girlfriend at the time felt it was a horrible choice and that was one of the reasons we broke up. I guess she didn’t want to have that “boyfriend who wants to rap” label attached to her(along with other reasons). My parents gave me the whole focus on school right now , music can be a hobby speech, and now they’re at every show I have. So as long as I deal with the negative when it comes and push through it I know there will always be more positive things coming out of that. “Criticism creates success”…. write that down kids. Hahaha”
Brandon: Nothing that ever made you think about giving up?
AMJ: “No nothing has ever made me think about giving up. When that day comes that will be the day I stop. If Michael Jordan stopped playing ball when he got cut in high school where would he be today? There’s some things in life you can’t second guess and I think your dreams are one of them.”
Brandon: If you could open up for one artist, who would it be and why?
AMJ: “If I could open for any artist right now I’d have to say J.Cole. He’s been my favorite artist since Friday Night Lights and for me sharing a stage with him would be an honor. Not because of how big of an Icon he’s becoming but because of how he connects with the people he makes music for. His fans are REAL, and those are the fans I want.”
Brandon: What can we expect from AMJ in the future?
AMJ: “This next project I release is going to be amazing. Dao Jones is doing all the beats and production except for one beat sent over by TheKlassiks. Like I said I’m hoping to have it out late March or early April. Along with that I’m going to have possibly 2 more videos coming out before that drop for my singles “Fuck You” and “G’d Up” both off of Class Of My Own. This will stir up a little buzz before I release the new project and I’ve really been wanting to do visuals for these anyway so it’s a Win/Win. AMJ will most likely be at SXSW with Dao Jones this year as well which I just found out today actually. So for now those are all the secrets I can give you guys haha. Shoutout to my homie Brandon Surber for the opportunity and PurpleBars.com for the interview.