Don’t think you’ve seen the last of Jarren Benton
Jarren Benton may seem fresh off the block for some. However, to many in the industry, the Georgia native went from being glare in the eyes of Def Jam to the front line of Funk Volume, one of the leading indie labels out of California. This year seems to be his time to shine with his recent tour with Tech N9ne & Freddie Gibbs and becoming apart of XXL’s Freshman Class of 2014.
Benton was able to sit down with us to speak on his recent success with the tour and what’s to come from his time on the road. He also speaks on his experiences with Funk Volume, how he got down with Hopsin and his crew and where his thoughts are for his next project.
The Source: You’re on tour right now. How’s that going for you?
JB: It’s pretty man not going to lie. It’s Me, Tech N9ne and Freddie Gibbs. It’s been real crazy. Everybody’s been showing a lot of love.
What’s the craziest spot you hit thus far?
I don’t even have a favorite spot. We do so many cities that it’s hard to tell. They all get live so I don’t know. That’s the thing about being on the road when it’s so structured. You might get to the city, do a meet-n-greet for an hour or two, wake up early and go to bed late as fuck. I don’t even get to city like I want to.
Since you all are together on tour, what’s the possibility for some collaboration in the future?
Actually, once I get off the road, that’s my plan. I’m about to start working on a new project. I already started working on it. I just need to get back and finish it. But I already told them boys that we’re going to get some shit in with Tech & Gibbs.
You’ve been rocking with Funk Volume for a minute. What was the moment like when you were officially locked in?
It was more like an ongoing relationship I had with them. When I first met them, I would fly back and forth to whatever city they were doing show at. I was just developing the relationship before we made it official, just to see if we were even compatible. Once I signed the deal, I felt like I was already part of them because were already fucking with each other already. So once I signed, literally like a month after that, I went on Dizzy’s Smoked Out Conversation tour. The chemistry was all there so it didn’t feel much different.
In the beginning of your career, you caught the attention of No I.D. & Def Jam. How did that factor into your overall decision?
Well, those were people I was just fucking with in the beginning. With Def Jam, I got to credit DJ Don Cannon for that. Cannon and No I.D. we still good friends. No I.D. heard my shit and he was fucking with it heavy. So they flew me to L.A., Def Jam and I met with him and another chick. They were fucking with me heavy. I thought my home was going to be Def Jam. But then, it was just like the typical thing with labels. It was taking too long and I just couldn’t wait man. I was at the point in my life where I was like I’ve wasted too much time waiting on people so I just wanted to do what I wanted to. So in my heart the Funk Volume decision it was just what I wanted to do. I wasn’t going to wait around for someone to make that decision for me. So I made it happen man.
Before you’re career got serious, you were a man of many jobs. How do you feel your work ethic contributed to where you’re at now?
I’ll think that it’s made me a lot more humble. I know what it’s like to struggle. I know what it’s like to wake up and hate the shit you’re doing but you know you got to do it to make a living. I know that feeling of feeling hopeless so, it just makes me feel humble. I feel like I have so much more work to do. I just feel like I got to go hard.
With your next project coming up, what will you do that haven’t done before?
I think what I wanna do with this project is just make some timeless music man. I plan on going back and putting more heart into my shit. I want to make sure that I give y’all the best quality work I can give you. I don’t plan on bullshitting. I feel like I still have shit to prove. There’s still people that’s sleeping on me, people who still don’t know me. I plan on making the best material ever.
Tony Centeno (@_tonyMC)