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JK22 | Redefining Hip-Hop with Authenticity and Passion



James Kampf, known professionally as JK22, offers a distinctive flow in his music that gently pushes the boundaries of genre. As both a rapper-singer and a videographer, JK22’s work is characterized by a thoughtful blend of jazz, country, rock, and hip-hop. This combination allows him to create a narrative that is both unique and engaging, inviting listeners into a world where traditional musical limits are expanded rather than strictly adhered to.

His approach to music is not about breaking barriers with force but rather about weaving together different sounds to produce a harmonious and captivating experience. This nuanced fusion encourages a deeper appreciation for how genres can intersect and enrich one another, showcasing JK22’s ability to craft tracks that resonate across many diverse listening experiences.

JK22 offers music not merely meant for listening but for experiencing. His songs are both an emotional journey and a lyrical lesson, resonating with the pains, joys, dreams, and truths from every listener’s life. Born and bred in Jackson, Michigan, JK22 anchors his artistic philosophy on empathy and positive vibes, emphasizing the ability to evoke enjoyment, motivation, and inspiration from shared experiences and common journeys.

His songs aren’t just hymns of rhythm and lyricism — they are reflective memoirs of life and the unexpected highs and lows that accompany. JK22’s music is designed to serve as a solace for the wounded, a motivator for the disheartened, and a celebratory anthem for those cherishing life’s precious moments. Whether it’s the contemplative ‘Stick-Up,’ the touching ‘How To Cry,’ the nostalgic ‘Time Capsule,’ the comforting ‘In My Arms,’ or his latest hit ’41,’ each track pours itself into the listener’s heart, ready to echo and resonate when needed the most.

JK22’s journey in the realms of music did not start with his rise as a power-packed performing artist. His inroads into the world of melodies began in his fifth-grade, experimenting with trumpet and French horn, and exploring the melodic possibilities of these instruments. His appetite for creative production led him to judiciously couple his music with his videography skills, giving his work additional layers of expressive dynamics.

Grown with a strong commitment to community-building, JK22’s mission goes beyond personal creative pursuits as well. His music can often be heard as an attempt to change, capable of influencing vital reforms in attitudes towards unity, legacy, and genuine self-expression. His constant mantra, be it in his life or his lyrics, leans towards inherited wisdom, learning from past mistakes, and nurturing an all-compassing sense of unity.

In 2021, JK22 embarked on a mission to explore the realms of collaborative synergy, a journey that led him to join forces with Luchyval, a talented artist based in Detroit. This partnership marked the beginning of an innovative venture. As their creative energies merged, the duo’s vision for a unique sound and message expanded, paving the way for the inclusion of another dynamic artist in 2023, Lenoria from Brooklyn, NY. With this addition, the trio transformed into MadFocused, a group whose name aptly reflects their artistic ethos. MadFocused represents more than just a collective; it embodies their dedication to producing work that is not only prolific but also sharply focused on breaking new ground in the music industry. Their commitment to pushing the boundaries of musical innovation and creativity is evident in their collaborative efforts, setting a new standard for what it means to be a cohesive and forward-thinking musical group.

MadFocused’s passion for unyielding innovation has seen them release a music project to date (The Million Dollar Question) while being deeply immersed in creating their next. Looking forward to the what the 2024 season will bring, JK22, Luchyval, and Lenoria are brimming with anticipation for their next creative venture, a project name still under the wraps, promising yet another unexpected leap in their experimental catalog.

JK22’s artistry is deeply anchored in his origins, enriched by his experiences, and invigorated by collaborative endeavors. Seamlessly navigating between his dual identities as a musician and videographer, he showcases the symbiotic relationship of his talents. This duality enhances his creative output, allowing him to resonate with a broad audience. His influence stretches from bustling urban centers to serene rural landscapes, where his music acts as a conduit for community connection. Through his unique blend of beats and melodies, JK22 constructs hits with bridges of understanding and awareness and uniting diverse audiences in a shared experience of musical exploration and emotional resonance, thus cementing his role as a versatile and impactful artist – and one we recommend you keep an eye on.

Connect with Jk22 across digital platforms like Youtube, UnitedMasters, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Spotify, and Apple Music.

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Hip-Hop Meets Indie Pop in Quavo and Lana Del Rey’s New Single



Quavo and Lana Del Rey, photo by Wyatt Spain Winfrey

The music world received a jolt of excitement with the release of “Tough,” an unexpected collaboration between rap artist Quavo and indie-pop darling Lana Del Rey. Dropping on June 3rd, the track has set tongues wagging and ears perking across fan bases.

Rumors of this unlikely pairing first surfaced when eagle-eyed fans spotted the duo at Quavo’s Atlanta hotspot, V12. Whispers turned to shouts when Quavo crashed Del Rey’s Boston gig, treating concertgoers to a sneak peek of their joint venture.

“Tough” defies easy categorization, blending Quavo’s street-smart flow with Del Rey’s haunting croon. The result? A genre-bending tune that’s equal parts grit and gossamer. Del Rey’s chorus paints a vivid picture: “Tough like the scarf on a pair of old leather boots/ Like the blue-collar, red-dirt attitude/ Like a .38 made out of brass…” It’s a lyrical landscape that feels both familiar and fresh.

Accompanying the track is a visually arresting music video. Co-helmed by the artists themselves and filmmaker Wyatt Spain Winfrey, the clip transports viewers to a pastoral dreamscape. Gone are the glitzy trappings of fame, replaced by sun-dappled fields and weathered porches. Quavo and Del Rey share intimate moments, from slow dances to guitar strumming sessions. In one eyebrow-raising scene, Quavo even gives Del Rey a crash course in marksmanship.

For Del Rey, “Tough” marks a return to hip-hop-tinged territory, echoing her earlier work. It’s been a minute since she’s shared the mic with a rapper, her last such collaboration appearing on 2017’s “Lust for Life.” The track also serves as an appetizer for her upcoming country-flavored album “Lasso,” slated for a fall release.

Quavo, meanwhile, continues to carve out his solo identity post-Migos. “Tough” follows his 2023 album “Rocket Power” and a string of recent singles, including the buzz-worthy “Mink.”

The song’s production, helmed by hitmakers Andrew Watt and Cirkut, provides a lush backdrop for the artists’ contrasting styles. It’s a sonic tapestry that weaves trap beats with twangy guitars, creating a sound that’s both of-the-moment and timeless.

As “Tough” makes its way up the charts, industry watchers are keen to see how this bold experiment lands. Will it open doors for more cross-genre pollination? Or will it remain a fascinating one-off?

Regardless of its commercial fate, “Tough” stands as a testament to the power of musical risk-taking. It’s a reminder that in an era of algorithm-driven playlists, there’s still room for genuine surprise and innovation.

The collaboration also speaks to the evolving nature of artistic partnerships in the digital age. Gone are the days when genre lines were firmly drawn in the sand. Today’s musicians are more willing than ever to step outside their comfort zones, resulting in unexpected pairings that push the boundaries of what’s possible.

As fans digest this new offering, one thing is clear: Quavo and Lana Del Rey have created something that demands attention. Whether you’re a hip-hop head, an indie aficionado, or somewhere in between, “Tough” offers something to chew on.

In a music landscape often criticized for playing it safe, “Tough” stands out as a bold statement. It’s a reminder that when artists follow their instincts rather than market trends, magic can happen. As the song says, “Whenever you’re ready, call on me.” It seems Quavo and Del Rey were ready to answer that call, and music lovers are all the richer for it.

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Tamar Sagiv Redefines Classical Music with Upcoming Debut Album



Tamar Sagiv / NYC-Based Cellist and Composer

In the competitive classical music scene of New York City, cellist and composer Tamar Sagiv is making waves with her unique blend of traditional techniques and contemporary flair. As she gears up for the release of her debut album this October, Sagiv’s journey from budding cellist to innovative composer-performer is turning heads in the industry.

Sagiv’s journey in music kicked off at age eight when she first picked up a cello. While she’s been in the music game professionally since then, it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that she took the plunge into composing her own pieces. This bold move has paid off, landing her gigs at some pretty impressive venues – we’re talking Carnegie Hall, WQXR, and even the Amsterdam Cello Biennale Festival.

But it wasn’t all smooth sailing. The real game-changer for Sagiv came during a tough personal moment. Sitting by her grandmother’s hospital bed, she penned “Shades of Mourning,” which is set to be her debut single dropping on July 26, 2024. This heart-wrenching experience became the spark for her upcoming album.

Sagiv shared, “My debut album explores the many forms and shades of grief, from mourning loved ones to grieving friendships and ideas. Through my music, I aim to convey these complex emotions while also advocating for the importance of peace.”

The album, slated for an October 2024 release, dives deep into the murky waters of loss and grief. However, it’s not all somber reflection – Sagiv’s compositions offer a glimmer of hope, a musical light at the end of the tunnel. To build anticipation, she plans to release a single each month leading up to the album launch, giving listeners a taste of what’s to come.

What sets Sagiv apart is her ability to bridge classical traditions and contemporary audiences. Her compositions weave together traditional elements with modern sensibilities, drawing from personal experiences and cultural heritage. This unique approach creates emotionally resonant pieces that speak to listeners across generations, positioning Sagiv as an emerging voice to watch in the contemporary music scene.

Sagiv’s rise in the industry has been marked by significant milestones. Last year, she made her solo debut at Carnegie Hall, performing her original piece “Roots” – a powerful statement of her artistic vision.

For those interested in following Sagiv, you can explore her official website and connect with her on Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and Spotify.

As “Shades of Mourning” nears release, anticipation builds for Sagiv’s deeply moving experience. Representing a new generation of classical musicians, her work showcases music’s power to process complex emotions and connect diverse audiences. Sagiv’s journey from young cellist to innovative composer serves as an inspiration, proving that personal experiences can be transformed into resonant art. Her debut album promises not just technical prowess, but a fresh perspective on contemporary classical music, solidifying Sagiv’s role in shaping the genre’s future. In the end, Sagiv’s music reminds us that in the quiet spaces between notes, we often find our shared humanity – a universal language that transcends all boundaries.

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Josi C Brings Dominican Heat to New York’s Music Scene



Josi C

A sweltering New York summer night hangs heavy in the air. The crowd’s chatter fades as the first notes of “Una Noche Mas” ripple through the venue. Josi C steps into the spotlight, and just like that, you’re whisked away to a beachside party in the Dominican Republic.

That’s the magic of Josi C, folks. Born Jose Cabrera, this rising star is shaking up the Latin music scene with a sound that’s as diverse as the city he calls home. But let’s rewind a bit, shall we?

Long before he was packing venues, little Jose was belting out tunes in his family’s living room. “I was obsessed with Jose Jose,” he laughs, recalling those Saturday morning cleaning sessions soundtracked by classic Latin ballads. But it wasn’t until he found himself, at just four years old, holding a candle and singing in Juan Luis Guerra’s children’s choir that the spark truly ignited.

“I knew right there and then that this is what I wanted to do,” Josi reminisces. But life, as it often does, had other plans first.

As the oldest child of Dominican immigrants, Josi felt the weight of his family’s sacrifices. “I had to focus on making sure my mother’s sacrifices were well invested,” he explains. So, he hit the books, learned English (and a few other languages for good measure), and eventually landed at Penn State.

Fast forward through a successful stint in project management, and Josi found himself at a crossroads. The 9-to-5 grind was stable, sure, but that childhood dream kept calling. “It was just the sign I needed,” he says of his unexpected foray into the music industry.

Now, Josi C is making waves with tracks like “PDR” and “Luna y Mar.” His sound? Imagine if a Caribbean breeze could sing, then throw in some New York swagger for good measure. “I like to inject my Dominican culture and vibes into my sounds,” he grins.

But don’t mistake Josi for just another Latin pop star. This guy’s got layers. One minute he’s crooning about lost love, the next he’s dropping projects that’ll have you dancing till dawn. Take his latest single, “PDR.” It’s all about being hopelessly drawn to someone, even when you know you should walk away. Sound familiar? Yeah, we’ve all been there.

Looking ahead, Josi’s got big plans. There’s a new track called “Otra Dimension” in the works, which he describes as having “galactic, chill, sexy, dance vibes.” (Is it too early to line up for tickets?)

He’s also gearing up for his first live shows. “They’re scaring the bejeezus out of me,” he admits with a chuckle. “But a good scary, like ‘I can’t believe this is happening’ type of scary.”

As for dream collabs? Josi’s got a wish list longer than a New York minute. “FEID, Karol G, Chris Brown, Justin Timberlake, Usher…” he rattles off, before adding with a grin, “Honestly, I’m writing a song with an Indian writer right now! I just love beautiful music.”

At the end of the day, what drives Josi C isn’t fame or fortune. It’s the connection. “I want to create memorable sounds that tie with people’s present moments,” he muses. “When that song comes on and things just ‘click’.”

So, the next time you’re scrolling through Spotify and come across a track that makes you feel like you’re sipping a piña colada on a Dominican beach (while somehow simultaneously strutting down a New York street), chances are you’ve stumbled upon Josi C. Give him a listen. Your ears – and your ‘liked’ playlist – will thank you.

Catch Josi C on Spotify, Apple Music, and Tidal. Follow him on Instagram and TikTok, check out his website, and subscribe on YouTube.

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