RJ Word on taking the world and music industry by storm
American pop artist RJ Word has been taking both the world and the music industry by storm between his popular hits and loyal fanbase. He’s already collaborated with some of the biggest names in music currently and continues to impress listeners around the world with his relatable lyrics and uniquely catchy tracks. In an interview with United by Pop, RJ Word opened up about songwriting, inspiration and more.
How did you originally get started with music?
I’ve been singing since I was a little kid and any opportunity that I could get; I had a little cover rock band when I was 10. Then I started doing musical theater, got tired of singing other people’s songs, and started writing my own. I’ve now been putting out my own records since I was 18…I’m 21 now.
Who were your musical inspirations growing up and who are you listening to currently?
I’d say the first music that I was really interested myself was the Beatles because they were the pop of the 60s. I then discovered Michael Jackson and saw the footage of Motown 25 and that was what spurred me to go [and decide] this is what I want to do with my life. That was really influential to me. As of what I am listening to right now, I checked out Ariana Grande’s new album last night which I thought was really tight. “Bloodline” is probably my favorite song on the record.
What can you tell us about your latest single “Love Hurts?”
It was a fun record to do. It took awhile. It’s something I started in 2017. The post hook on that kind of came first and I went through a couple different versions of verses. It’s kind of pop-funk! 80s vibes. Sad, but also a happy track.
You were featured on Juan Magan’s song “Echa Pa Aca.” How was it to work with other incredible artists such as Pitbull and Rich the Kid on that song?
It was a lot of fun. We all recorded in different states. I think it’s cool that technology provides the flexibility of doing that so more collaborations can happen than ever before. I had been talking to Juan on social media and stuff and I knew he was coming into the U.S. to do some shows, so I went out to Vegas to see him. We really hit it off and knew we wanted to work on something together. “Echa Pa Aca” became that record. Everything Juan touches seems to turn into gold, so I had some solid expectations. I’m pretty blown away with where it went. I was in the Dominican Republic for the last week working on some records with him too.
Speaking of support, you have a huge following on social media and incredibly dedicated fans! How is it to have that support system and what do you love most about your fans?
I love the instant feedback. It’s pretty cool to have that communication with your fans. Never before have artists been able to connect and get to know fans on this level. At least, this many fans on this level. It’s awesome and I’m really grateful for it. Their response has been overwhelming and pretty cool.
Who would you like to work with the future?
I would really love to work with Max Martin. Bruno Mars is also a pretty big influence right now. His voice is ridiculous. That would be really tight in an ideal world.
What song or songs of your own do you resonate with most that you have released?
I’d say the last two, “Love Hurts” and “What You Need,” are my top two. I’ve been writing songs for a while now and I feel like I’ve finally hit a groove where I know what my sound is and I’m really enjoying these [new] records more. When I first started writing songs, I was really just trying to write commercial records and as soon I realized I should make music that makes me happy, people started listening to it even more.
What inspires your music? Where is the weirdest place you started writing a song?
I get ideas in random places! I like to switch it up and just kind of get into new environments and feel different ways. Songs get inspired by all sorts of things. A lot of it is just what mood I’m in. I’ve always liked telling stories, so if I’m in a sad mood, I’ll tell a sad story. If I’m in a good one, I’ll try to write something fun!
If you could only listen to three songs for the next month, which would you choose and why?
I would want to go with songs that are on the longer side. “Tubular Bells” by Mike Oldfield because it’s like 20 minutes long and has a bunch of parts. I’m thinking of “TKO” by Justin Timberlake because it has an A song and a B song cut on the album cut. That’s like getting two songs in one! I’ve been listening to a lot of disco and older funk type records and the album The Dude by Quincy Jones has a lot of good songs on there, so “Turn On The Action” because it has a lot of different chord progressions. Drastically different [choices].
What can fans look forward to in the near future?
I’ve got another single of mine coming out pretty soon and worked on a couple of records with Juan [Magan] in the Dominican Republic. I’m trying to get out to Indonesia pretty soon to do some shows out there!
Be sure to stay up to date with RJ Word on his social media and website for the latest updates.