100% Jeshi: the rapper who’s figuring it all out for himself

The East London artist has dropped the visuals for his emotive collab with Celeste.

This is a real and honest representation of what it is that I want to be doing. I’m really happy to have taken the time to see it through,” says Jeshi of his recent EP, Bad Taste.

Released in April, Bad Taste is a six track collection of soul-bearing rap tracks with features from John Glacier and BRIT-winning newcomer Celeste. The EP had been in the works since the release of Jeshi’s debut project The World’s Spinning Too Fast in 2017, and Jeshi’s had some career-affirming pit stops along the way: he supported slowthai on his last European tour, and collaborated on a track with Vegyn.

Today, the 25-year-old east Londoner has shared the visuals for Bad Taste track 30,000 Feet – a powerful song where emotive piano chords and a gentle saxophone are punctuated by the thud of an 808 kick. The video feels like a bittersweet compilation of summer memories caught with an iPhone and a fisheye lens. Watch it and get the 100% lowdown on Jeshi below.

10%: Where were you born, where were you raised and where are you now based?

I was born in Newham, east London and grew up in Walthamstow, east London. Right now I’m isolating on a farm in Berkshire but I’m based in south London. I’m an east Londoner to the core though, I hold it close to my heart.

20%: At what point did you realise you’d be able to do what you love for a living?

When I was 11-years-old. It’s that blind confidence and naivety – what the fuck else would I be doing? I never really saw why I couldn’t spend my life doing music. If you’re willing to put in what it takes, I don’t think there’s anything you can’t do.

30%: What’s a piece of advice that changed your life?

I don’t think I process much advice. I take it with a pinch of salt, go with my stomach. I don’t want to take someone’s advice that leads me down the wrong path, and then have to be angry at someone else. At least if I’m going off my gut and my instincts, if I fuck up then at least I can learn from that and move forward.

40%: What kind of emotions and experiences influence your work?

With this EP, I wanted to capture where my head was at throughout the period I made it in. It reflects where I see myself sonically, finally making music how I hear it in my head. I came up with the concept of bad taste’, which I guess represents the figure of speech – when guilt leaves a bad taste in your mouth, as well as the literal bad taste of ecstasy. That inspired a lot of the thoughts and ideas within the project, things you think about the morning after.

50%: What can you tell us about your next project?

I’ve got a load of music that I made after making this EP, so I’m just sitting at home listening to it all, trying to figure it out. I have an album in the back of my head that I’m allowing to take shape at its own pace, which is a development of what I’ve put out already.

60%: Break down your typical day at work…

I wake up, have a shower, try and work on some music. With all the shit that’s going on at the moment, the typical day has kind of been thrown on its head. Everything is taking place from the comfort of home – I’m enjoying it. Normally I try to get into the studio as early as possible, stay there until the Red Bull stops working and I can’t hold focus anymore.

70%: What can artists do to help save the world?

Stop pretending like they care about saving the world.

80%: Love, Like, Hate?l

Love banana milk, like when things go to plan, hate Jordans.

90%: How did you celebrate your last birthday?

My birthday was on the first day of lockdown, so I just got an early night. What else was I meant to do? I’ve postponed my birthday – I’m pretending it never really happened. When this is all over I’ll have a proper birthday celebration.

100%: No.1 holiday destination?

I’ve always really wanted to go to Japan.

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