Min Jae Kim (28) is an independent singer and producer, who mixes and masters his own music. As an independent artist, he has been using music as an outlet and a way to express himself, so we interviewed him to find out more about his life and his creative process.
Disclaimer: These are very basic questions we ask every artist to get to know more about them in order to write our "Who You" segment on Instagram. All the artists often get similar questions. We would normally not release this as it's not a full-on interview but we thought it might be good to do so.
What is the meaning behind your name, J;KEY?
'J' is the initial from my Korean name, and 'key' is a music term. In a music score, the semicolon denotes the key - eg. D; means the D key. Therefore my name is essentially the J key.
When did you debut? What was your debut track?
I released the mixtape "IMDOINME" on SoundCloud in 2014, which was my debut.
How did you get started in music? What were you doing before them?
I was just a student, but as a teenager I wanted to express myself. I decided to do that through music.
BLESSED (feat. Chamane) - J;KEY
What is a benefit and a challenge of being independent?
A benefit is that I can do whatever I want to do, but that means I have to plan and take charge of my career on my own. There are many other things I have to do besides music.
What inspires your music and sound? What do you usually do if you have a creative block?
I have to have something I want to express. If I don't have that, I can't really make music. When I get inspired, I make a beat myself and try to freestyle some different lines and lyrics, then I'll do the mixing and mastering. Until now, most of my discography was fully made by me but, moving forward, I'm trying to co-work with others.
Who's your favourite artist? Is there anyone you'd like to collaborate with and are there any genres you want to try?
I like to listen to Chris Brown, August Alsina, Lloyd, Jeremih, Jacquees, and so on. I get a lot of inspiration from R&B artists. I'd like to try soul and funk genres.
What do you do in your off time? What are your hobbies?
I like to watch Netflix, and play FIFA 21 and Battleground.
ITW (feat. Young Thugs Club) - J;KEY
What would you say sets your music apart from others in the music scene?
While I don't think I use unique sources in my beats, I instead always try to put my own soul and texture into my music. That's my uniqueness.
ROMANTICO was released in 2 parts: how would you describe both instalments and what did you want the listener to experience?
I'm trying to say something realistic through ROMANTICO. All of us are struggling in life. Yet no matter how difficult this moment may seem, it can also be romantic. I was hoping I could cheer the listener up.
What can we expect from J;KEY this year? Are there any upcoming projects that you'd like to hint about?
You can expect better music, and a cooler me. Since I'm not famous yet, I'm going to keep knocking until that door opens.
JEANS - J;KEY
Is there anything else you would like to tell us about yourself?
You can get to know me through my discography :)