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Jaboukie Comes Out of the (Musical) Closet

Jaboukie Comes Out of the (Musical) Closet


<p>Jaboukie Comes Out of the (Musical) Closet</p>
Photo by Tiffany Champion and Vivian Shih

The comedian has been making music for years, but is now releasing his debut album, All who can’t hear must feel.

Jaboukie Young-White is known best for his biting and chaotic sense of humor, as well as voicing one of the first queer characters in an animated Disney film (2022’s Strange World), but now he’s ready to take over the music world.All who can’t hear must feel, which released August 25 on Interscope, is his debut album, weaving themes of Christian indoctrination, queer sex, first-generation American disillusionment, and his signature irreverence into one of the most diverse albums of the year. The Advocate recently caught up with Young-White to discuss his new trajectory.

Why did you decide to make music now? What inspired this album?
I’ve been making music for a few years now. When I first moved to New York after school, I planned on doing music and comedy — simultaneously, but separately. But I was too broke to sustain both, so I doubled down on comedy and put music on the back burner. I kept making music, but I just never released any of it. I posted a few beats on Soundcloud in 2016 and then everything else was just in a group chat between my brothers and I. Then fast forward to 2020, I was working on a project with Interscope films and shared a few demos that got passed up the ladder. They asked if I wanted to release something officially, and I couldn’t think of a good reason not to. I totally understand how it could be perplexing that I’d release music, but if I were worried about being perceived as odd I would’ve changed my name by now.

This album has a lot of different sounds on it, how would you classify it?
I really can’t classify this project, and that’s kind of by design. If I had to give it a genre, I’d just say electronic or experimental hip-hop. I took a sample-focused approach to every track on the album. Even when I play live instruments, I’m looping and repeating them as if they were samples. There’s a bunch of artists who either directly influenced the sounds or the way I made the tracks. This project was shamelessly inspired by a lot of the electronic experimentalists I love — there’s definitely some Azealia Banks, JPEGMAFIA, Tierra Whack, M.I.A., and Arca sprinkled throughout. It wasn’t at the forefront of my mind when making songs, like, “I’m going to make an XYZ type song,” but afterward I was like “Oh, that’s definitely who I was channeling there.”

Do you have a favorite song on the album?
“Feel the Same” was a lot of fun to make. It was a late addition to the project that came out of a little jam sesh I had with my brothers. We grew up in a musical household, and would sing and bang pots and pans together, but it was the first time the three of us ever made music together as adults. It’s a beautiful little moment and I’m happy it made it onto this project.

What is the perfect environment to listen to this album for the first time?
Anything with a subwoofer. A lot of this project takes place in the low end. I don’t have a car, but I’ve been told it goes crazy in a car.

All who can't hear must feel is out now.

jaboukie - All who can't hear must feel (Official Album Trailer)www.youtube.com

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