Even through the test of time, his focus remained on music...
Recently, Charlotte, NC native, Facenville (Jon Tillman), released his brazen new hip-hop single called “Hey Sexy”, under the B.A.G. Entertainment Label.
Just a few days ago, the artist was spotted in New York, New York, at the Sirrus XM Satellite Radio Station. Word on the street is that although Facenville was there for an interview, he was actually premiering a video for the latest single.
Speaking of his latest track, the song is an upbeat and pop-inspired tune that has a combination of salsa-enriched instrumentals in addition to erotic pelts from the lyricist who’s singing the hook. Facenville uses his gritty vocals paired with Hostyle Whosanes surging lyrics, to create a rousing story, spiked with sexy innuendos to express his deepest pleasures.
Facenville said that it’s easy for him to write rhymes and rap-- he fell in love with hip-hop back in the late 80’s and early 90’s when Boogie Down Production was a thing. He spent summers in New Jersey with his aunt, and it was during those lazed days that his interest for the craft grew. Facenville noticed that the New York culture for rap music was different than his hometown. He said that people in Charlotte owned the Atlanta scene and even Miami, however, the melodies from up North was very different.
“People, here, weren’t accustomed to the sound,” he said. New York had different stuff that I still haven’t heard in Charlotte till this day,” he chuckled.
Technically, a student in the game, Facenville learned the in’s and out’s of the business early on, and loved it. However, the inevitable happened, and he became a single father at an early age. Facenville committed to being a full-time parent while placing his ambitions on a warm burner until his son graduated high school.
Facenville said that if he couldn’t do music, he’d probably be cutting hair because he’s a natural at it, otherwise, it will always be the music.
He considers himself a hip-hop artist versus being a rapper. “Anybody can rap—um, it’s the international notoriety that I want. I want to pay bills and live comfortably. So, if I have to be the super-person, the Michael Jackson in the industry, I need to be the best at what I do, to live comfortably.
When asked about the direction he chose when he made the steamy track “Hey Sexy,” he said, “Well, my man, Davine Brown made the track—it was one of those things that it didn’t need those heavy drums. It was more of a guitar strumming, and the idea just popped in my head—the names of old-school TV shows, with a twist.
When we finished with the project, I felt like it was clean and we didn’t need to edit or touch it. I felt that I could really do something with that one.”
It’s obvious that Facenville knew a-thing-or-two about the direction of the album. In the world of music, and in order to get airplay on the radio, a song can be sensual, but it has to be unadulterated to get proper spins on the radio without added vulgarity.
Facenville shared the stage with Macklemore, Kendrick Lamar, and few other headliner artist, which was a cool experience.
Although he is an artist, Facenville said that he would love to use his instrumental platform to help the youth…” Me, personally, I think that people need to realize that we are more than human. We are more than color. We are more than flesh and bones. They really need to understand that—we’re all skin, and we are all a part of God. This is a point that they need to let that come through. I don’t care what color you are, or how young and old you are. Once this generation gets a grasp of that and they understand that, I think it would be a little better. I think we could kinda have a heaven on earth(peace),” he spoke assuredly.
“Hey Sexy” is a premier project, however, Facenville spends his time in the studio with other artist and much younger musicians.
“I want to focus on the younger artist and let them know that it’s alright to have good annunciation, pronounce correctly, speak and act smart. It’s alright. It’s cool to do that,” he said.
“It’s a term that the less morale you have; it’s supposed to mean that you’re doper. I believe that started back with Eminem. They said that Eminem could rap and they said the things he was doing and saying about his mom, the outlandish stuff, was cool. I think people fell into that. But, like, you’re not Eminem… I just think it went there and it got worse. They think the less morals you have, the cooler your music is, or something like that.
Facenville said that pursuing his dreams as an independent artist was quite expensive… “I’d say that years ago, I was trying to get discovered. That’s not it anymore. You go get it, instead of trying to be seen. I’m beyond that. As for being independent, it’s very expensive, but I don’t mind. It’s like being with a label, when they front you the funds and you have to pay the money back if you don’t meet their quota. Well, this is coming out of my pocket, and I like it better, doing it this way.
After my son graduated, I had the wow factor that I didn’t have kids anymore. He graduated and I didn’t know what I was going to do with myself—so, I took the music with more self-mindedness.
My son is 20 now. He doesn’t know that he’s still a baby,” Facenville gushed.
B.A.G. is going well… “In the next 5-years, I want to have that studio pumpen. It’s several of us, so I’m sure when we start doing our thing, it’s going to be much larger than we are now,” said Facenville.
“I don’t want to work for anyone anymore. Back in the day, we were taught to go to school and get a job—go to school and take out a fifty-thousand-dollar loan and get a job. No, I want to make money from my craft.”
Finding the right sound that people wanted to hear was fairly easy for Facenville. “I wouldn’t say that it was difficult, but I still keep my ear to the street, to the younger audience, to the radio. I would never lose myself in all that. I know what sound I want to promote,” he said.
“My music is actually on the college radio stations right now… It’s pretty cool,” he exclaimed.
Novelty is something that Facenville takes very serious, “How would you be you if you aren’t original, and how can you be you if you aren’t original,” he concluded.
While it may seem that talking about leaving a legacy is difficult for most people, Facenville said that he still has a lot of life in him, so it doesn't bother him to talk about the grown folks stuff. He wants to help the youth and he wants to do things in the community.
Facenville displays good qualities—he has a wholesome character and immobile integrity. He laughs when he needs to laugh, and he's serious when it’s time to do business, or as he eloquently states, paper work... so please come correct when dealing with him--don't let the humility fool ya.
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