After posting a few homemade music videos of himself rapping on YouTube 18 year old, Jake Miller, was surprised to find out that he immediately created a buzz in the music industry. Just 3 months later he was asked to open for Snoop Dogg’s concert and shortly after asked to open for rapper Mac Miller that led to many more opportunities. He didn’t stop there and pursued his dream even more by entering the Samsung & T-Mobile Sidekick 4G’s “Kick it with the Band” competition where he won the grand prize and $35,000 to use towards his music career. Now, at just 19 Jake Miller caught the eye of Frank Harris, Jason Derulo’s manager, and is now working with him. MTV exclusively premiered his music video in March “I’m Alright” and radio stations are starting to play his single throughout Florida and around the country. What makes this rapper stand out even more is that he adds positive and upbeat messages in his songs. Furthermore, the rapper also taught himself how to play the guitar and drums at a young age and even writes his own songs. What doesn’t he do?! With all of his successes in the past year, this young Miami rapper is on the fast track to superstardom and conquering the music industry.
JAKE MILLER’S WEBSITES:
Name: Jake Miller
Type of Music: Rap/Pop
Location: Weston, Florida
Birthplace: Washington, D.C.
Q: How old were you when you got started in the music industry?
A: Music has always been in my blood. I taught myself how to play the guitar, the drums, and the piano at a very young age. However, at that point, music was just a hobby. As I got older, I started gaining respect for musicians and the music industry in general. Between my passion for entertaining and my passion for music – it was at the age of 17 when I knew this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
Q: What got you started making music?
A: When I was in 9th grade, I turned all of the poems I had written in my English class into songs using GarageBand on my Mac. From there, I found that YouTube was the best outlet I could use to share my music with my friends. They immediately gave me positive feedback on the songs I put out and in turn I was inspired to put a few more of my songs on YouTube.
Q: Who are some of the artists and musicians that you like to listen to?
A: It ranges from Drake, Eminem, Lil Wayne, and Big Sean to John Mayer and Jack Johnson.
Q: What are some hobbies of yours that you do in your spare time?
A: When I’m not writing new music or in the studio recording, I like to be on the beach, kicking it with my friends, going to the movies and drawing.
Q: How do you come up with new music? What is your inspiration?
A: Every song has a different inspiration behind it – whether it is about girls, relationships, friends, the desire to succeed, reaching for ones dreams. Different things inspire me everyday and I am constantly writing words and lyrics and ideas down.
Q: Which song that you have written is your favorite? And why? What is the meaning behind it?
A: My favorite song that I have written would probably be my latest single “I’m Alright.” When I was out in L.A. working with the Fliptones, I was walking from my hotel to the studio and I passed the Santa Monica Pier. I saw this one homeless man who had nothing but a sign and a shopping cart full of what looked to me like old dirty clothes and garbage. And even though it appeared that he had nothing, he still had the biggest smile on his face. That man inspired me to write this song, which compares a man who has nothing but is happy and content to a man who has everything but is miserable and constantly stressed out. The moral of the song is that money and material possessions shouldn’t effect the happiness of someone.
Q: What advice would you give to someone who is looking to get started in the music industry?
A: Don’t stop until you reach your goals and dreams . Be persistent and determined. Staying active on all social media platforms is key – especially on YouTube.
Q: Were your family and friends supportive of your music and your choices to get into the music industry?
A: Yes – I feel so lucky to have a great support system!
Q: What was your reaction when you found out you were opening for Snoop Dogg?
A: Opening for Snoop Dogg was actually my very first live performance ever so while I was definitely a bit nervous I was also so appreciative that I had this amazing opportunity. It was such an incredible experience and definitely one of the best nights in my life!
Q: What were your thoughts when you gained your popularity on YouTube so quickly?
A: I was initially really shocked by it but at the same time so humbled by all the positive and supportive feedback I was receiving. It also motivated me to keep going and get twice as many views!
Q: Who would your dream collaboration be with?
A: I would love to do a collaboration with Drake. He’s always been my all time favorite. Not to mention I have his new CD “Take Care” on replay literally 24/7.
Q: Do you have any crazy fan stories?
A: I get marriage proposals a lot!!! I love being active on my Facebook fan page and twitter accounts and make an effort to always respond to each and every person who tweets me or sends me a message. I have the best fans!!
Q: What’s your favorite part about touring?
A: Performing on stage and meeting my fans. Also, I love being places that I have never been before and seeing new faces.
Q: Do you get homesick while on tour?
A: Nope! There is nothing I love more than performing so when I am away from home, I am doing something I love. Plus, there is always video chat!
Q: How do you stay grounded with all of the fame?
A: I feel so fortunate and blessed to have the most amazing fans who motivate me and encourage me every single day. I also have the support of my family, friends and team who are with me every step of the way which helps a lot.
Q: What do you do to calm your nerves before a performance?
A: Before every performance, I take a few minutes to myself in a quiet place backstage. I put my headphones on to block all noise, listen to a Drake song, take a big breath and then hop on stage.
Q: If you had to describe your music in three words what would you call it?
A: Positive Hip-Pop
Q: What do you think your “biggest break” or “greatest opportunity” has been so far in your musical career?
A: I think my biggest break thus far in my music career was when I was discovered on YouTube by my Frank Harris who is now my manager. Frank is the CEO of 23 Management and is Jason Derulo’s longtime manager and mentor. I really look up to Frank and his knowledge of the music industry.
Q: Do you have any hidden talents?
Q: What embarrassing songs would I find on your iPod?
A: I have some old school Backstreet Boys on the iPod and I’m not scared to admit it!
Q: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
A: The best advice I was given was by Asher Roth. Before a show we were both performing at we were hanging out together backstage and he told me that I won’t get anywhere if I let the haters bring me down. He told me that he occasionally still looks at the YouTube comments on his videos, but has learned to ignore them. He stressed to me the importance of ignoring the negative comments and concentrating on all of the good ones – which is exactly what I’ve done since the second we had that talk.
Q: Where do you see yourself in the next few years?
A: I hope to see myself on a world tour, performing and making a difference in peoples lives. One thing I will never stop doing (besides, of course, making music) is giving back – it is so important. A few Grammy Awards would be sick too!
Q: What is the overall goal or dream that you want to achieve with your music?
A: Through my music, I want to share my vision and my dreams with the world and prove that anything is possible. Hopefully, I can inspire other kids to live their dreams too. Basically, I’d say that my inspiration is the desire to inspire.