We connected with Toronto based artist B1GJuice for an exclusive interview to discuss his new single “99 Freestyle”, as well as his creative process when developing it. We also talked about how B1GJuice used music to overcome depression related to his hypertrophic cardiomyopathy diagnosis and having to stop playing football at Furman University, and his goals for the remainder of 2019.
After reading our Q&A with B1GJuice, be sure to connect with him on his website and social media, and stream “99 Freestyle” on Spotify.
Your new single "99 Freestyle" is a certified summer banger; tell us about your creative process when developing the song. Also, who produced it?
The beat started this song off for sure. It wouldn't allow me to write about anything else except good times. It reminded me of a chill summer evening cooling with the team, so that's what I wrote about. I normally don't vocalize the way I did on this song; but I tried something new, and it worked in my opinion. The song started off as a lovamon song (Boy Wants Girls), but I felt that was too generic and the message would be to easy to grasp; so I turned it into an "ode to summer". The beat was produced by Rob Kelly.
Can we expect a visual for the single to come next? If not, do you have another single dropping soon?
I wasn't planning on doing a visual for this song. It's intention was to hold the listener off until my upcoming project was ready. But now it seems that I may have to actually create something for it because the response from the listeners has been great, better than I expected really. I'm always in the studio recording new music, trying new things, so I always will have new content coming.
While you were playing football at Furman University did you push pause on your musical aspirations or were you able to juggle both?
It's crazy actually, because I didn't have a career in music before football, nor did I imagine one. Everything was focused around football and making it pro. I had interest in poetry and music separately. I started writing poetry at a young age 10, and also fell in love with music (mainly hip-hop) around the same time. I would perform poetry in public, but never once thought about using that skill to make music. It wasn't until I was told I couldn't play football anymore, that I began to think about my musical aspirations.
Having been diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy of the left ventricle, how did your music play a part afterwards in overcoming depression and the other hardships you were dealing with at the time?
It played a huge role; apart from family and friends. Before I started making music I had no way to express myself other than football. Physicality was the way I would vent. When that was taken away from me I had no way to express the hurt or pain I was feeling.
Music started out as a coping mechanism for me. It helped express all that I was feeling without looking or seeming weak. Once I realized that I could actually make some sort of career out of it AND also motivate others, I decided to become a serious artist.
What are some of your goals musically for the remainder of 2019? Can we expect to hear "99 Freestyle" on an upcoming EP or mixtape?
As of right now “99 Freestyle” will stay as a stand-alone single. That style is not my normal style; so sonically, I do not have much that will fit with it, but best believe I will be making more songs similar to “99 Freestyle” now.
The plan for the rest of 2019 is continued growth and success; for me and everyone around me. Musically, more singles for the summer, a couple more videos, and a project in the fall.