Name: Greatness Jones
Location: Hackney, London.
1. When did you realise you wanted to be a producer?
I’ve always had an interest in music. Funnily enough, when I was a kid I always wanted to be a singer. My mum told me that singing makes you grow taller. Before I found out that producing was the route I wanted to take, if you had asked me back then, I would have said [singing] was the route I probably wanted to go.
2. Was music always something that you saw yourself being involved in?
I’ve always liked music, I didn’t see myself being a creative in music. Prior to music I used to play basketball and American football, for a team called ‘London Blitz’. I always saw myself doing sports. Music was something I did on the side, then I started to take it seriously. I used to go to a faith group, and I remember the guy saying “everybody has a purpose on the earth”. We were watching Myles Munroe, a motivational speaker, who stated, “the richest place on earth is a graveyard, because you’ll have cures for cancer there, songs that were never sung, movies thats were never made or written.” I thought, I just don’t want to be one of those people who have a potential for something and don’t fulfil it. So I took it seriously from then on.
3. What made you decide to pursue it as a career?
I stumbled across producing through an extracurricular activity that happened in the Summer holidays. In school I was a naughty kid and I got referred to this program held at Round Chapel in Clapton, Hackney. All the kids that were naughty in Hackney ended up on this music course that taught us about production. I didn’t really pay attention, I was just happy to be around my friends in the holidays. I did the course – it lasted two weeks out of the six weeks holiday and then at the end of the course I got given a CD full of music programs and sounds to install when I got home. I messed about with it for ten, fifteen minutes, thought “it’s not for me,” and then a year after, when I had been at home revising for GCSE’s. I just used to go on my computer, playing around, it just became a habit, I just started making beats.
4. If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing instead?
If I could make it, then sports. If not I would probably have a boring office job. I was studying accounting and finance at Uni and it was crap. I was just doing it because I thought it was the right thing to do, because I had been in that education structure all my life. I just thought that was the next step, that It was the right thing to do. So yeah, I would probably be in something to do with accounting and finance.
5. Where do you see yourself in ten years?
I see myself having a lot of accolades, having contributed to the sound and music culture by producing and influencing a different soundscape. Hopefully having a team and empire that come from my camp, that dominate the scene also. Whether it’s artists or writers or producers. I just see myself giving back to the game.
6. What’s the Hip Hop scene in your hometown like?
Hackney is the place to be, whereas before it wasn’t – it was the place you wanted to stay away from. South London had a Hip Hop scene, but I think we were one of the first places to have this kind of scene. Growing up, in East London, every other East London postal code loved Grime. Whereas Grime was sick in Hackney but we also had people that rapped, like Mashtown – that lot used to be on rap beats. There were so many different crews in Hackney that all used rap beats before it was the thing to do, I think it’s pretty early right now.
7. What qualities do you have that separate you from everyone else in this music scene?
I couldn’t tell you, I just know that I want to be the best. I’m competitive but I guess a lot of people in the game have to be competitive otherwise you won’t last in it. I work hard, I think that those are qualities you have to have with anything you’re pursuing that’s outside of the ordinary. Thats how I feel.
8. Who was your Hip Hop idol growing up?
50 cent was my favourite rapper growing up. Production wise, it’s crazy, I only used to like certain music because I wasn’t really a music enthusiast, I never used to properly find out who produced things. As I got into production, I started to realise all the songs I liked growing up were either produced by Timbaland, Pharrell Williams or Rodney Jerkins. Now I know all the songs I liked growing up came from those three.
9. Which musician would you most like to work with?
Producer? I would love to get in the studio with Rodney Jerkins, pick his brain same as Pharrell. Rapper wise, it would have to be Kendrick Lamar, he’s one of my favourite rappers.
10. What’s your favourite animal?
I don’t think I have one, because I’m Nigerian. I’m going to say Eagle. As we call ourselves the super eagle.