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    Two popular names in Louisville hip-hop, one concert and a venue that has played host to the likes of Curren$y, Naughty by Nature, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, and many more.

    Jack Harlow is headlining a concert at The Mercury Ballroom on June 18 presented by The New Vintage, Do502 and B96.5. When we last spoke to Jack in December of 2015 he had just dropped ‘The Handsome Harlow EP’ and was ready to graduate high school. Now, six months later, Jack has graduated and has big plans. If you don’t know his name by now, you will soon.

    Insert Bonez, or Uncle Bonez. Mark Clayton is a Louisville native, a solo artist, and the ‘Tall’ in Big & Tall. He is also an opening performer for the show in June. The three sat down with to discuss the upcoming show, as well as their music: How has everything been since we last spoke?

    Jack: Everything is smooth. I graduated. I just finished an awesome project called ‘18’ that is coming out that I’m super proud of. Life is going swimmingly for sure. I've grown a lot in the last 6 months. I learn something new every day and life stays handing me lessons. I study the world, people, behaviors/actions...everything. That’s just me as a human being. Music-wise I’ve definitely grown a lot. Experimenting, stepping out of my comfort zone. Just growing in every way possible. I think ‘18’ will make that clear. 

    Bonez: Everything has been great. Jack has a lot of the younger artist calling me Uncle now. It’s dope that they look up to me in that way. Dj Hi-Definition and I have been throwing a regular event at Louis’s the Ton that has been very successful over the last 6 months. We've also been taking the old school rapper/Dj duo approach to what we do. I’m the Fresh Prince and he is Dj Jazzy Jeff. The first time we talked, you described Bonez as Uncle Bonez. How eager are you to perform in the same venue on June 18? 

    Jack: Very eager. Regardless of the performance being in the same room with that fellow is a real treat. That’s a hell of a guy right there. Always looking out for me, dropping gems...just an overall great man to have in your corner. What about you, Bonez?

    Bonez: It’s always fun performing on shows with young Harlow. He brings a huge fan base and I’m blessed that he is a fan of my music and wants me to hit the stage with him as much as possible. Only thing that worries me are the young girls. They went a little crazy in January last time I hit the stage with him. What can we expect from the show?

    Bonez: Expect me to do what I always do... KILL THE STAGE! But seriously, I will bring a bunch of people from the scene with me. Expect appearances from Razor, Play, Kogan Dumb, and Jay Elly. I bring high energy to my performances, so I will yell and jump around like a crazy person. I am excited to hit the stage with some of the greatest artists from the state of Kentucky and the city of Louisville. Jack, when we lost spoke you described your concerts as “F-ing lit”? Can we expect the same momentum on June 18?

    Jack: Yes, for sure. And I really hope so. I’m hoping we can get the guardrail in front of the fans taken down from Mercury Ballroom so it can be an intimate experience. The elevated stage makes things a little less sexy, I think, but we are gonna turn it all the way up and do it right. Should be an experience. Let's talk your most recent EP's. Jack- You said before that you have the high school circuit locked down locally. Do you feel that has expanded since you realized ‘The Handsome Harlow EP’?

    Jack: Yeah I think so. Things are always growing. Right now I’m just trying to focus on catching the eye of hip-hop fans and just people in general on a national level. Bonez- Looking back, how would you describe the success of the Big & Tall EP?

    Bonez: The Big & Tall EP had great success. James Lindsey, the artist formerly known as Jalin Roze, told me that we had the biggest release he has ever scene in Louisville. It was awesome to hear that coming from him, considering he has had huge success here in Louisville. I think the most important part about the EP was that it brought the city together. I have never seen so many artist in one spot. Artist traveled down from Lexington for our release. Razor and I appreciate the support we got from everyone. That was a dope moment for us. Razor and I are friends so we will always make music together, but right now I am focused on branding myself and growing as a 

    solo artist. I’m still learning and growing everyday. Thankful to have people like Razor and Jack by my side to help me as I travel down my own path to what I think will be success.  
  Do you think this concert is the first of many for Summer 16? What do you think you’ll be doing this time next year?

    Jack: This will probably be one of the only shows I do in Louisville this summer. I'm trying to expand my horizons out of the city. Next year I imagine playing festivals, loving life and getting all the money and hanging with beautiful girls. 

    Bonez: Yeah, honestly I am no longer putting myself in this box referred to as the “Louisville music scene”. I want to travel and do shows all over the globe. I am just guy from Louisville chasing his dreams. I love my city, but I believe at this point I have proved time and time again that I don’t fit in... I stand out. What's next? Any new music? New experiences?

    I just moved out my parents house into a spot with my DJ and producer. I feel so liberated. I will never experience rules again….but yeah, it’s pretty great, I love summertime and being on my own in a way. Right now I’m just hanging out with my friends as much as I can and breathing in life. I go out and create experiences that will eventually become songs. 

    Bonez: I recently dropped another 3 track EP titled 'Friend to the People' on Soundcloud. It is actually old music from last summer that I have been sitting on. Like a lot of artists, I was nervous about dropping the music and it ended up sitting way longer than I intended. I will also drop a new song before the show June 18th and I can’t wait for everyone to hear it. What is one word you would use to describe one another?

    Bonez: Unstoppable!
    Jack: Gregarious.

    The show is Saturday, June 18 at Mercury Ballroom featuring Jack Harlow with special guests, The Homies, Bonez, and Dj Outhere. You can purchase tickets here.


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    About Alexis Messmer

    2015 University of Louisville graduate. All things social media, marketing, writing, sneakers, photography, music, and a whole lot of coffee.

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