Q&A With Ontario, Canada Based Hip Hop Artist josephnsparrowb

Hey josephnsparrowb, Such a dark and mysterious rapper you are!!!  We def want to get to know you better!!  Please tell us what exact area code you represent? How long have you been making music/beats?  How did you get your Emcee name?

I’m not providing my area code for personal reasons, HOWEVER I will say that the province of Nova Scotia, Canada did shape the tone of my lyrics. I found comfort in the trees in its forests and woodlands when I was in a bad place, no human being could make me feel that strong of a comfort. It didn’t matter if it was rain, snow or sun, the solace of the woods keeps me relaxed.

I’ve been making music since I was 13 years old though my background is in Atmospheric Black Metal. I recorded my first full album when I was 13 years old, and I still have it on CD just sitting in my basement, titled “Metsa Haltioden” which is finnish for “The Forest of Elves” but I can’t remember exactly because it was really disingenuous, I was just a 13-year-old nerd. I took Black Metal seriously in my final year of High School when I was 18 and recorded 4 full length albums under a project called “Avail.” I had no equipment, I just had a crappy webcam mic and I just mixed in on an old video editing software from like 2008. It’s easy to predict that it all sounded like shit sonically, but I put my heart and soul into all that shit, though my voice couldn’t keep up with it all, so in July of 2017 I practiced rapping as hip-hop was my other go-to genre (though I’ll listen to anything as long as it’s fucking good, all genres are capable of being good) but I still wanted the music to represent me, and given all the evolution that hip-hop has undergone within the 2010s it seemed to fit that I’d contribute a new sound to the culture. I get to keep making music the way I want, and maintain my voice, and that’s ultimately what lead me to start rapping, and of course the lo-fi aesthetic of the music on-top of the style of instrumental comes from essentially making the most out of nothing. I managed to invest in an electronic drum kit and I’ve learned to use Audacity, but still, my tools are very minimal, I can’t afford anything on the level of FL Studio right now, so I make-do with what I have, and I feel like I’ve managed to fashion a style out of these limitations that works for me. Lo-fi rhymes til’ I lay in the dirt!

My artist name was something I made up on the spot, it was a typo of my real name “Joseph Sparrow” that one of my closest friends made quite some time ago that just stuck for some reason. If you’re curious to know the pronunciation, it’s “joseph-N-sparrow-B”

What influenced you to become a dark/emo type rapper?

ahahahahaha I’d never call myself ’emo’ though I guess it isn’t entirely wrong as I do feel as though I’m being melodramatic when it comes to a lot of my issues, and emo is often associated with melodrama (no disrespect to the emo bands tho, shoutout to sunny day real estate, mineral, portraits of past, la dispute, my chemical romance, all that good shit).

Nothing really influenced me to do this outside of my general love for hip-hop and Black Metal, these two genres have provided such therapeutic relief for me over the years that I just had to give something back to the culture that shaped me. I hope my music can connect with anyone going through shit, regardless of their demographic. I hope I can have a following that draws as much out of my art in the same way I have from others.

 Some might question your style, but for sure its ORIGINAL? How important is it for you to stay original?

I don’t think anyone should make it a goal to be original/unoriginal, I just do what feels right, as every artist should. It may nor may not turn out original, but it doesn’t matter as long as your art turns out the way you intended, that’s all that matters. I would call myself original as nobody has tackled myself, though I do have individuals who’ve influenced my style, such as Three Six Mafia, TeamSesh (BONES) and in terms of how I sample you could call Kanye an influence in terms of my approach, though never listen to my music expecting me to sound anything even close to Kanye hahahah.

 Tell us about the creative process for your new upcoming album….Any surprises?  When will you drop it??  We are looking forward to conducting the REVIEW!!

man I can’t even tell you, I’d risk spoiling it for the listener, the fun in digesting albums is lost if you go in-depth as to what into it in my opinion, would you reflect on To Pimp A Butterfly the same way if Kendrick just straight up told you in an interview what everything meant? Would Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind be the same if Michel Gondry straight up described the structure and execution of it? It is a valid question, but I will not discuss it, all I can say is that I feel like I’ve made something special, and I know every rapper says that so feel free to take that with a grain of salt, but if everything works out for me it will be because of the groundwork I’ve set for myself on this project.

I’m going to drop it within the next few months, that’s all I know. I’m waiting on some features right now and it’s just a matter of waiting on them to come through before I can announce a release date, and I know they will as they’re all great people who I have the utmost respect for (you can view the tracklist on my FB page linked below). Also for those who don’t know, the album will be 100% free to download as I don’t believe I should have to charge you all to connect with something.

 In 2018, who will be on your personal music rotation playlist!? Any new artists you are listening to?  Any artist you would like to work with??

ill work with anyone who suits my aesthetic, though my dream is to get a BONES feature, in-fact I’ve messaged the TeamSesh Soundcloud some really embarrassing shit to get their attention that I regret immensely.

As for shit on my rotation in 2018, I’m definitely looking forward to Earl Sweatshirts new album, as all of his projects have been stellar. A$AP Rocky also has something planned, and one of my favourite rappers to come-up last year Ski Mask the Slump God is dropping his album this year, which I absolutely cannot wait for, Danny Brown’s album is probably my most-anticipated album of 2018, as-well as Denzel Curry. I feel like Danny is going to give us an unexplored mature side, and Denzel has only gotten better with each project so I feel like his next album is really going to pack a punch.

I don’t have new artists I’m listening to but here’s a random list of my all-time favourite hip-hop artists

Aesop Rock
MF DOOM/Madvillain
Earl Sweatshirt
Danny Brown
Young Thug
Lil B
Tyler, the Creator
BROCKHAMPTON (ok I guess they’re new)
Kanye West
Three Six Mafia
Kendrick Lamar
Death Grips

and fuck it, ill throw in an r&b artist, FRANK OCEAN THE GOAT


Kanye West
Clams Casino

Out the box type question, If it came down to 1 ALBUM only, what underground Hip Hop album would you consider THE BEST OF ALL TIME!!!???……One 1 album you can choose.

Incredibly hard question to answer but I’d have to give it to Labor Days by Aesop Rock.  I’d be here for ages talking about this album so I’ll just summarize in saying that it’s the most lyrically dense piece of music I’ve ever heard in my life, across any genre. Aesop’s pinnacle of production, flow, rhyme-scheme and lyricism is brought to its fullest potential on this album, and firmly cements him as my favorite rapper.

 Your definition of “Underground Hip Hop

Very broad, in this day and age “underground” pretty much just refers to anything that hasn’t hit the mainstream. This isn’t something I really think about, as I said before, I believe artists should just do what represents their art well and not worry about being this or that.

 Drop all your music and social media links!





About Armando Urena Jr

Senior Publisher for @UGHHBLOG // Been an Underground Hip Hop fan all my life and I'm dedicated to keeping the culture alive on a daily basis. Working hard every day and staying positive is what LIFE is all about.