“I just try to be different and provide something new for the culture, my generation, and be someone with universal appeal” says Jamaal in a sit down at a restaurant in Leimert Park, California. “With every song and project that I approach, I do it with an attempt to fill a void in my culture, and be a voice for my demographic.” At only Nineteen-years of age, one would not expect Jamaal to exude such confidence and assurance in his abilities. It’s fairly easy to see why Jamaal has amassed so many others to believe not only in his music, but also in the messages that he conveys in his music as well.
Born into a family with both his mother and father as probation officers, a career in music couldn’t be further from what they assumed his journey in life would be. Born and raised in the Leimert Park portion of Los Angeles, California, Jamaal grew up as an avid fan of Hip-Hop music, but never considered being an actual musician as a young child. “I was a big fan of Hip-Hop growing up. My mother was a big fan of Hip-Hop music as well, and she was actually one of the first people to introduce me to artist like 2Pac, and Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, Biggie, and a bulk of others.” As the young rapper went through his youth, he attended a local boys and girls club. It was here, as a young 7th grader, where his desires and aspirations to use music as an actual career path, developed.
After deciding to have basketball as his number one priority in his life while attending Dorsey High School in Los Angeles, Jamaal’s passion in music was put on hold. It was not until his senior year of high school, when challenged by his peers and teammates to “freestyle” did his enthusiasm for music reawaken in him. Graduating from Dorsey High School with honors in 2010, Jamaal continued his education at The University of California, Merced, and has balanced his music career in the process. Through his friendship with rising Los Angeles MC, “Jet 2,” Jamaal has been able to progress his music career, while taking steps to get that degree. “Jet 2 is an artist that I went to school with at Dorsey who has his own studio. He’s great at mixing and mastering as well, and is one of the greatest rappers that I’ve ever heard. I wouldn’t be anything without him.”
There is a dazzling future ahead for Jamaal, and the aura surrounding him is great. While finishing his debut free album titled “The Cool Table” to be released in the first quarter of 2012, Jamaal is already hard at work finishing up his follow-up project. “As a new artist, I feel its essential to take advantage of the space that I’m in at this moment. I can’t take a break. Hip-Hop today is a competition, and if I were to slow down now, it would be extremely detrimental to what I’m trying to do, but for now it’s all about THE COOL TABLE!” The Cool Table is a true portrait of Jamaal’s desires to be an honest representation of his demographic and culture. “Hopefully, this project can be an adequate representation of the peaks and valleys that surround us young people and can appeal to everyone, but more specifically, appeal to people around my age.”