Readers of my Monday Download will know that I’ve made no secret of my love for Mick Jenkins’ latest project The Water(s). The Chicago up-and-comer provides an album full of quality music that is engaging on multiple levels. It can be considered a ‘concept’ record, and its content ‘conscious’ but these words suggest something a little drier than the organic, melodic and infectious songs that Jenkins delivers.
I caught up with the Cinematic Music Group signee to talk about The Water(s), being picked up by Jonny Shipes, iPod etiquette and Ginger Ale…
How do you feel about the way The Water(s) has been received?
Positive all of the way around. All I really have is the numbers to look at is numbers as far as downloads and growth on social platforms and it’s pretty consistent – kinda crazy. Twitter and Facebook are great places to interact with fans and really see people’s opinions and it’s been really positive, we’re garnering a solid base. I mean, Rolling Stone reached out, yourself, press is really picking up, so I think it’s really positive. I’m interested to hear what people behind the scenes think but yeah, overall from fans and the new acquiring of fans, other artists opinions, I think it’s really positive. I was excited to put it out and I’m really happy with it.
Did you expect it to be received better than your previous project, Trees And Truths?
Absolutely. What people don’t know is I actually have six mixtapes, and the first four I was only releasing music to friends, I wasn’t doing it the right way. So Trees And Truths was realising that and then my effort at that, and then The Water(s) was doing that at a higher level, actually having a PR and making more strategic moves rather than just dropping an influx of music. And then once Jonny Shipes was on board it really progressed things a lot faster. So, absolutely, I knew it would have a bigger impact.
It’s had a very organic growth. It may have not crashed the Internet when it first dropped but I’m always seeing people recommending it to their friends and stuff. How important do you think that is?
I think that’s absolutely important. I think for someone that might be really excited or impatient, it could be a negative, if you don’t look at the way things are and the way things last in the industry – underground or mainstream. And to have that organic growth and the building of a loyal fanbase is desired, that’s what is going to incubate longevity. So I appreciate it. I’m getting a thousand new followers a week on Twitter and I’m looking at the same things as you; people are recommending it, people are being surprised and letting friends know. That’s exactly what we want, that’s the way to do it. It’s a little bit of a slower process, but it’s a more honest process and it builds loyalty faster than any other way.