UK Drill with Marc Jones

Marc Jones

In the past few months there’s been multiple stabbings across London and the main word being thrown around is UK Drill. With the current negative media attention surrounding the UK Drill scene (which is the adopted child of grime and UK rap), I wanted to look deep within this genre to see if there was a glimmer of light and maybe a change in direction ahead.

Fast forward to Marc Jones. He currently has over 100K streams on Spotify and he represents what I like to refer to as “WOKE DRILL”.

Hailing from Croydon South London, he merges his past experience with a darker side of London and his current positive mindset, which makes for a well-balanced collection of tracks.

I managed to reach out to Marc Jones, who is currently on vacation in Canada, and he was kind enough to answer a few questions.

JF: First and foremost I need to let your know that your latest track 3 Door is a certified BANGER! Who is Marc Jones? And what do you bring to the UK music industry?

MJ: Thanks, I’m glad you like it!

For me, Marc Jones is an attempt to be my most authentic self. I’m an artist from Croydon, South London with a love for good quality music. I grew up playing a wide range of instruments, loving different genres, but rapping was something that came naturally to me and that I enjoyed. Hopefully in the next year or so, the UK will be able to see my love of different genres and versatility.

JF: Your style of Drill music is noticeably different from what we are used to hearing in the London scene, why did you decide to bring a more positive aura to such a typically dark genre of music?

MJ: One of the main reasons I started doing music was to try and bring an alternative to the music that is often in the mainstream. There are a lot of artists with a great deal of talent in drill music, but I feel like at times there’s too much negativity. First and foremost, artists need to be true to themselves, and when I jump on a drill track, that’s all I want to do. I want to talk about my life, my experiences, but still come hard with the drill cadence and flow. Hopefully I’m achieving that.

JF: With the current media attention surrounding “Drill music” concerning knife crime in London within the black community, do you believe that the music has a knock-on effect onto what’s going on out in the streets?

MJ: In short, for me the answer is yes, it does have an effect. But at the same time, it’s not the main factor for the violence. There are many other problems we could list: closure of youth clubs, lack of role models etc, but it would be naive to say that not one young kid has been affected by the music.

There are genuinely some drill artists who live the things they talk about, and there are others that do not. I think that’s where the problem often lies, but at the end of the day success, fame, and money talk, so if someone sees a way out through making the type of content usually associated with drill, they will do it.

JF: Your track Wrestling is nothing short of amazing. Who was your favourite wrestler back in the day before it became PG, and who would be your ultimate tag team combination?

MJ: Glad you enjoyed that one too!

I would say growing up my favourite wrestler was The Rock. His trash talk was on another level and he was an extremely charismatic performer.

My dream tag team would be The Rock and Shawn Michaels. HBK was just something else in the ring.

JF: A few months ago, you sent one of your tracks into Fresh On The Net and immediately it stood out to me, you have a great balance between what’s going on in the South London streets, your faith and your personal journey (congratulations on the mortgage).

Why was it important for you to cover all these experiences rather then stick to the usual grime/drill topics?

MJ: I think it’s important to be real. That’s a big thing for me when I put out music. Whether it’s a turn up track or a reflective one, I want to give people a window into what I think and my daily life. Faith, family and friends are important to me. I think they’re important for many others too, so my hope is that they’re able to relate.

JF: How would you describe the current state of the UK rap/grime/drill scene? And who are you listening to currently?

MJ: I think the UK scene is currently in the best place it’s ever been. The internet, availability of studios, and the ability to do it yourself has meant that undiscovered talent doesn’t really stay undiscovered for long. It’s funny, at the moment I’m in a writing and recording phase so I try not to listen to too much so I’m not influenced. Before that I was listening to Loski, K-Trap and 23 Unofficial.

Marc Jones

JF: Your beats are straight fire! Being a producer myself I always find it fascinating to know what artist personally look for when choosing a beat?

MJ: Production is the most important thing for me. If a beat doesn’t move me to write, it’s unlikely I’m gonna choose it. One of the reasons I love drill is because of the 808s. If they’re booming, it’s likely I’m gonna get involved.

When it comes to other genres, I love beats that give the opportunity for great melodies. Recently, I’ve found I prefer to write whilst in the studio creating a beat with the producer. That allows me to craft and co-produce the song exactly how I want it.

JF: What advice would you give to that 15 year old boy or girl in their bed room who wants to be a Drill rapper?

MJ: I would say be true to yourself. Don’t worry about creating music that you think others will like. Make music that speaks about what you’re passionate about. I guarantee there will be others who are also passionate about the same thing.

JF: If you could make a collaboration album with anybody dead or alive, who would it be with and why?

MJ: As cliched and obvious as it sounds, I would do an album with Drake, just because of his versatility. The way he fuses melody and rap is what makes him one of the biggest artists in the world.

It’s funny because my favourite music is actually reggae, so I would love to do an album with Lt. Stitchie or Yellowman. Those guys are the pioneers for some the sounds we have in the UK today, so that would be a good experience.

JF: What is next for Marc Jones?

MJ: I’m working hard on new music: experimenting, producing, writing, trying to make the best music that I can.

With my previous releases, I haven’t been as prepared as I could have been. I wanna make sure that I have everything together and then maybe get an EP out next year.

Thank you Marc for taking your time out to speak to our listeners here at Fresh On The Net. We wish you all the best and keep them bangers coming…

Spotify | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Marc Jones

JFlames

JFlames aka “J-Flames” & “Jay Flames” is a multi genre music producer/DJ/Artist from South East London. Read more about JFlames here.

3 Comments

  1. This is awesome. Well done for landing the interview and doing such a great job.

  2. Steve Harris

    I love this interview, and Marc is clearly a really interesting artist who’s going places!

  3. Higher Levels

    Good interview, it’s good to see artist that actually love the art form and make that step to put forth the music that is a real expression of who they are and they’re experiences. Music will go further downhill if people just replicate the previous person

Comments are now closed for this article.