You most probably would have chanced upon a beat maker named Jinsang on Soundcloud or Spotify — that’s because the producer has made a name for himself with 80.3k followers on the former platform. Much remains to be said about how underground artists and producers like himself have impacted from the enormous usage of music streaming channels today.
Jinsang’s latest album, confessions, is sure to attract you in any situation — from waking up on a rainy morning to soothing a heartache. His music has also been featured on various ‘study music’ playlists and he has been referenced to various beat makers such as Nujabes and fellow digitally famous artists such as o k h o.
Despite hitting more than five million plays on Spotify, Jinsang is quiet about his life outside music. We caught up with him over e-mail one day to find out more about his sense of direction in music and the landscape he finds himself in.
What’s the culture in California like, and how has that shaped your work?
California is a really diverse place that has inspired me in some ways. Meeting with different types of people opened my eyes to many perspectives. It helped me fuse the various moods in the beats I make. I try to create multiple layers with my work.
With the evolution of music, how would you describe your genre? What’s your goal when it comes to creating sounds?
The whole beat genre is changing constantly.
People are always inspired by greats like Dilla but are also inspired by their peers and other people doing similar styles. You end up getting this mix of combined styles. I try to bring something new with every release.
Do you prefer when people address you as ‘Jinsang’ or your real name Ben, and why?
I would prefer Ben. Jinsang is just my producer alias.
Honestly, what got you into music and did you ever think you’d garner this many listeners?
Yeah, fiddling with FL Studio as a hobby and gaining this much out of it is crazy. It's definitely a challenge balancing my studies and this but I love doing it.
What’s your relationship with music and art?
I grew up with a family that had an appreciation for different types of music and art — that exposure helped shape my taste. They listened to a lot of jazz, classical, and 70s records. Whenever I produce something I try to achieve a good feel to it instead of forcing something out and getting an unnatural sound.
Tell us more about your album — confessions. From the beats to song titles, what’s your process of creation like? What’s the most crucial part of the entire album?
Confessions was a themed tape. I tried to evoke a certain mood but nothing is specified. It is up to the listener's interpretation. I tried to give the listener something one can reflect upon.
What does artistry mean to you and how can that be preserved by new wave of producers, audio engineers and musicians?
Artistry to me is just expressing one's personality or emotion and turning it into something we can all appreciate, like music or other forms of art.
I feel like sometimes we get too caught up trying to emulate another and end up losing track of how we truly want to express ourselves.
How has your craft progressed since your earlier days, and how do you see it developing in the next 1 to 2 years?
For the most part, I believe that my craft has changed significantly in terms of styles and methods. I've learned to mix a lot better than before but now I'm still trying to learn new things such as live instruments and different plugins.
What’s of utmost importance to you in life and art, where you are right now?
The most important goal I hold in my mind is happiness and success. I use those as a guideline for many aspects of my life.