34-year-old Mecose Clayton Johnson, an Eleutheran music artist – with his own music label, and dozens of original songs released during the past four years within the local market – has recently released a new tape, which he says is just for the fans. The Eleutheran sat and talked with the young artist early in December to learn more about who he was and the music he was so passionate about creating.
What’s new from Mecose Johnson?
I just put out a full mixed tape. I’ve been dropping music for the past year and a half, using my own label, Cruz Control Music. There is now a new mixed tape that I just dropped, about three weeks ago, called ‘Gutters and Palm Trees’. I came up with that, because, you know we have both spectrums here in the Bahamas. We have some people who are living kinda hard, and we’ve got some people that’s living kinda easy, and chillin’.
How would you describe your music?
It’s hard to describe, because I can’t really put it in a box. I go from rap, to afro-beat music, to rake and scrape. So, I kinda dabble in a bunch of different genres. It’s eclectic.
Can you tell us more about the mixed tape?
I’ve been working on it over the last year, and finally got a chance to drop it. I wanted to drop it before the year was out. It has 9 new tracks on it. The full mixed tape has 24 tracks on it, which includes some of the older music I released earlier during the year. It’s a mixture of hip hop and afro-beat music. I didn’t get a chance to put any rake and scrape music on there, but I did release some rake and scrape music in 2018, with rake and scrape artist, Q’Pid. It’s on YouTube. We did it with the Sky Juice Band. They had a trilogy series they were doing that we shot some videos for.
Do you perform live?
Yes, I do live shows. Right here in Eleuthera. My last performance was in August. It was a private party in Rock Sound. I perform at more private events, and adult events. I’m trying to expand my repertoire now, where I would be able to do shows for kids and homecomings. That would mean releasing more rake and scrape to do that. However, I did perform at the Eleuthera Junkanoo Festival during January of 2019, and that was pretty cool.
How long have you been involved in music?
I’ve actually been doing music since about 14. I started in the the Baptist church on Cupid’s Cay. My Mom is a singer, and my aunt was the choir director. At about 14 myself, and my friends Chris (C-Dash) and Manjaro – we started a gospel rap group, called J-Squad. Starting off, we did pretty well. We even moved to the US a few years after, trying to get signed to some record labels over there. We did Zomba, and visited Epic Records, but none worked out. After I turned 18, I left the music alone then for more than 10 years – just sitting on my talent – which I probably shouldn’t have done, as I may have been further ahead by now. At about 30 I got back into music, so it has been about four years now.
How many original songs have you created in those four years?
I have so many songs – probably more than 120, but I’ve only released about 32 of those. I’m recording basically every other day, but everything doesn’t make it. I have tons music I haven’t released yet.
With your own label, Cruz Control Music, do you record here on island?
I actually do record right here. Most of my music, I record at Circle of Trust Records, with Jay Sands, who has a studio here in Governor’s Harbour. He gives a good price, and I like to support my hometown people, who support me. If I have a really big song to record, I would jump into Nassau – as they have everything you need in studio. I have ties with FAM Records, that’s Mark Cartwright and Nahjee Dunn. They are big in the gospel arena. They are kinda like my mentors, so I use their studio if I need to as well.
What are your goals for the mixed tape?
This one is for free – building my fan base is what I’m doing right now. So, this one is basically for the fans. I have hard copies that I’m giving away free, but fans that follow me on YouTube and on my website at ReverbNation.com/cruzcontrol8, they can download my music directly to their mobile phones, computers and other devices. I’m on SoundCloud.com/cruzcontrol as well. I’m also on Facebook and Instagram. Instagram is: Cruz_controllers and Facebook is Mecose Cruz Johnson. I would definitely like for people to visit and subscribe to my YouTube page, and follow me on Facebook and Instagram. Keep up with what I am doing, because I have some big plans for 2020!
My main focus for the mixed tape was to motivate people. I call it Gutters and Palm Trees, but if you take a listen, it has a lot to say – about coming up having to deal with adversity – people looking at you like you don’t know what you are doing, but if you really love it you have to keep on going. There is something for everybody on the mixed tape. I’ve put my money, sweat and tears into this one. I’ve gotten some good feedback so far, so this one is for the fans!
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