I discovered Jon Bellion only last week. What it didn’t take was a week before I’d filled my library with all three of his self-produced mixtapes. Jon is on another planet genre-wise. I’ve never heard anything like him and it’s incredibly refreshing. He seamlessly incorporates elements of hip-hop, R&B, rap, pop, and maybe a little Jazz/Blues into every enticingly original track.
To say he has a style all his own is an understatement. Jon strikes the perfect balance between boundary-pushing electronic-pop and underground east coast hip-hop. I wasn’t at all surprised to find that he was influenced by the likes of Coldplay, John Mayer, and André 3000.
Wait ’til I get my money right. Then you can’t tell me nothing, right?
His sophomore mixtape, The Definition was a perfect introduction to the 23 year-old from Long Island, New York. The first track, Munny Right recycles the famous hook from Kayne West’s Can’t Tell Me Nothing. Bellion has stated on multiple occasions that Kanye was unquestionably his greatest influence, even attributing his decision to drop out of college at 19 “from an album made by Ye, I’m out my mind.”
So far his decision to ditch school has payed off. While he doesn’t want to be known as “the guy who wrote the chorus to The Monster,” he does consider it a major stepping stone in his career. If you did in fact need a little incentive hopefully that did it. Below are links to his work and if you haven’t yet, check out my advice on creating the optimal new-music listening experience.
John Bellion Chronology:
- Scattered Thoughts Vol. 1 [Stream]
- Translations Through Speakers [Stream]
- The Definition [Download]
- The Separation [Stream/Download]