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Hunnypot's own Matthew Belter had a chance to sit down with up and coming rap sensation Joey Cool for an exclusive live interview prior to him taking the stage at the House of Blues in San Diego, CA.  They begin the conversation discussing his start in the music business along with his unconventional musical influences.  Topics include his recent signing with Strange Music, Inc., his latest self-titled EP, and current tour with the legendary Tech N9ne.  You'll also learn Joey Cool's "go-to" BBQ in Kansas City, and whether or not James Brown beats out Frank Sinatra as one of his all-time favorite artists. 


Let the games begin!


Matthew: Good afternoon, today I have the distinct pleasure of sitting down with Joey Cool.  For those unfamiliar with his work, he’s an amazing artist, incredible song writer, and the latest artist to join the incredible roster of talent at Strange Music, Inc. 


Joey Cool:  It’s great being here, thanks for having me.


Matthew:  Let’s jump right into this, how’d you get started in the music business?


Joey Cool: I started back when I was maybe a freshman or sophomore in high school.  There was a program where we'd go over to another school, like a tech school or something like that, and there was a studio over there.  So, my friends and I would always spend time there free styling it. We also used to do the same at house parties…

One day, one of my friends (who was going into audio engineering after graduation) took me to a formal studio. I'd never done anything like that, and then I just never looked back from there.


Matthew:  Never looked back?


Joey Cool:  Yeah. I caught the fever.


Matthew:  What was it like your first time on stage?


Joey Cool:  My first time I was on stage was in Chicago at this place called the Elbow Room.  From what I can recall, I was pretty nervous.


Matthew:  I could only imagine.


Joey Cool:  So yeah, I was very nervous, I had no idea what I was doing.


Matthew:  How’d it go?


Joey Cool: I had my moments but overall it was a blast!


Matthew:  The world is filled with incredible musical talent, both past and present.  Who are your musical influences?


Joey Cool:  I don't really have many rap influences.  I’m more influenced by other styles of music.  As you may know, one of my aliases is “Swank Sinatra”


Matthew:  Maybe a tribute to the “Chairman” himself?


Joey Cool:  Of course.  I’ve got a heavy background in Motown, The Temptations, you know. Also, the Rat Pack.


Matthew:  I absolutely love that style of music.  But just to be totally transparent, I'm a rock and metal guy myself…


Joey Cool:  I love that shit.


Matthew:  Your self-titled EP that was just released at the beginning of May and is fantastic. Congrats on an amazing accomplishment.


Joey Cool:  Thank you.


Matthew:  It’s solid on all levels and has an old school sound that I really dig.


Matthew:  How would you say these early influences (like The Temptations or Sinatra) helped you shape your current sound?


Joey Cool:  Yeah, I think it’s all about the production.  I'm more drawn to the intro - kind of jazzy big band type shit.   I could also see performing loud and big, but also with some substance behind it too.


Matthew:  Speaking of substance, it was clear on this album was that you had a point of view about some of the crazy things about things that happening in society today.


Joey Cool:  Right, right, right.


Matthew:  It really jumped out at me with on the track “Stranger Things”.


Joey Cool:  Yeah, “Stranger Things”.


Matthew:  I thought it was amazing because you touched on so many current topics and lyrically showed how you felt about them.


Joey Cool: For sure, for sure.


Matthew:  Loved that track, so good.


Joey Cool. Thanks. That song has a Ubiquitous from CES Cru on it.


Matthew:  Help our readers understand how you connected with Tech N9ne and ultimately signed with Strange Music, Inc.


Joey Cool:  Well, I’m from Kansas City too.  And in the hip hop scene there, people just know where to go to watch the up and coming rappers.  So, Tech popped in for one of my show’s and the rest was history.  Also, a lot of it had to do with JL too, because I've been working with him for ten plus years now, performing and writing music together and all that shit.


Matthew:  Obviously, it was a match made in heaven. Seems like a perfect fit.


Joey Cool:  Yes, we honestly started talking about signing me two summers ago and then it was a process until recently.  I just got my chain in October in Red Rocks…


Matthew:  Nice, congratulations.


Joey Cool:  So yeah, that was cool.


Matthew:  Tell me a little about the difference between your first two releases (Magnus Opus and Swank Sinatra) and your latest EP? From what I can tell, there seems to be a bit of a departure from previous styles.


Joey Cool:  Yeah, I think I tried to do that on all my albums really. I like to reinvent myself, but I think that what this album is more me just finding myself. Like finding the pocket that I'm supposed to be in.  And this one felt comfortable. The most comfortable, you know?


Matthew:  Gotcha. Listening to all the tracks a few times over, it seemed like you were able to capture your personal quite nicely through your incredible lyrics. Listeners walk away feeling like they understand who Joey Cool really is.


Joey Cool:  Yeah.  You asked earlier about hip-hop influences.  Well, someone that I've kind of picked up some of those traits from are artists like Kendrick Lamar and Kanye West. I want to be able to touch people like that, you know what I'm saying? As far as music goes, not, you know, who they are individually.


Matthew:  I understand where you are coming from.


Joey Cool:  But yeah, as far as music goes, I just like to produce something with substance, but also with a sound that stands out too.


Matthew:  And how about “Joey Cool’s” image? Has that just been evolving over time?


Joey Cool:  Yeah, pretty much. I mean I’ve always kind of been like this. I've always been cool, chill, laid-back, whatever. But yeah, like I said, I'm just becoming more myself now.


Matthew:  That was showcased for me with the intro to your album, “The Rhythm Lounge”.  It literally set the stage for what was to come later in the album.


Joey Cool:  Yeah, and that intro too.  A lot of people don't know that is all live. We had musicians come in - standup bass, drums and everything else you heard.  So yeah. It's all live.


Matthew:  Speaking of live, the Planet tour just kicked off and is now beginning to pick up steam. How's the experience been for you so far?


Joey Cool:  It's good.  We've been killing it every night, pretty much. I mean it's always crowded at Tech shows, you know.


Matthew:  Understanding you must run, I have a few rapid-fire questions from our listeners back home in LA.   I’ll give you two words, pick the one that resonates best with you.


Joey Cool:  Go for it.


Matthew:  Cognac or Scotch?


Joey Cool:  Scotch.


Matthew:  Wood Yard BBQ or Arthur Bryant's?


Joey Cool:  Arthur Bryant’s


Matthew:  Chiefs or Royals?


Joey Cool:  Chiefs.


Matthew:  Tupac or Snoop Dogg?


Joey Cool:  Probably Tupac.


Matthew:  Finally, James Brown or Frank Sinatra?


Joey Cool:  Oh shit. Now that's a hard one. I'm gonna say Frank just because. But, James Brown, man. That's my shit too, man. I love that shit.


Matthew:  I can’t wait to see how you bring “Swag Sinatra” to life on stage tonight.


Joey Cool:  All I can say is it’s gonna be good.


Matthew:   Anything you want to share with our listeners before heading out?


Joey Cool:  I guess when people ask me that, or anything about the album, I feel like just if they listen to it, they’ll get it. Like you said, people will draw your conclusion about me, what I like, how I am, and it's kind of like what you see is what you get once you listen to it. 


Matthew:  I agree.  It is a phenomenal album and well worth the money on Amazon or Apple.  In my opinion, the debut EP by Joey Cool has all the ingredients of a winner right out of the gate – It has heart, soul, and most importantly swagger. 


Joey Cool:  Thank you.


Matthew:  On behalf of Hunnypot Unlimited, I would like to thank Joey Cool for taking time today to site with us in the “Hot Tub”.  Check out his latest self-titled release, “Joey Cool”, and catch him on Tech N9ne’s 2018 Planet Tour this summer.  You won’t be disappointed.


Joey Cool:  I appreciate your time today, thank you.


For more information on Joey Cool, click HERE

For more information on Tech N9ne's Planet Tour - 2018, click HERE


Matthew Belter

Executive Editor - Long Beach

Website: Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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