Jehlad’s latest single “Pluto” is an exciting track that will have you rethinking your plans for space travel. Showcasing the talented artist’s unique style that blends R&B and pop elements, this single enters with rockets blazing and will have you entranced until you’ve reached your celestial destination.
With a bass heavy beat, “Pluto” begins with a disjointed syncopation that grabs your attention immediately. Jehlad’s voice enters with a smooth, soulful tone as swirling harmonies orbit the main melody creating a kaleidoscope of sounds. The production is complex but never messy; it perfectly balances the decorative elements into an organized and balanced system that supports the memorable lyrics. Jehlad’s voice is emotive and captivating as he sings “I’m lost on Pluto, I can’t breathe”.
Based in San Diego, Jehlad Hickson was drawn to music from a young age. He used his love for music to get through hardships including a period of time when he and his family were homeless. He has since become a multi-instrumentalist and a member of San Diego’s Voices of Our City choir. Jehlad remains optimistic and, in addition to pursuing music, is now working towards earning his Masters in Business. An incredibly versatile artist who brings an unmatched honesty to his music, “Pluto” showcases Jehlad’s creative production, serene vocals, and poetic lyrics that will have you looking at the night sky in a new way.
Written by Katrina Charles
Q&A with Jehlad
Q: Through the good and the bad, music has always been a part of your life. How have you kept your passion alive?
JEHLAD: Music has kept me balanced since the first day I was able to walk. I remember annoying so many of my family members whenever I used to bang my hands on the cushion of my grandfather’s chair when I was three years old. Since then, I have been literally marching to my own beat of the drum. I keep my passion alive by listening to so many different genres of music. When life got really bad, I would just get in my car, drive for hours, and just sing.
Q: You play many different instruments. How does this affect your songwriting and production process?
JEHLAD: I usually just hear three or four chords and go from there when it comes to songwriting and production. I try not to go over the top with putting too much into the song, just to prevent a lot of cluttered noises. The saying is true, less is more, especially when songwriting. I have a great ear for hearing certain melodies that sound familiar and can fit on what ever track that I am currently working on.
Q: How do you hope to evolve as an artist?
JEHLAD: I want to evolve as an artist that can be accessible to every person listening. I want to be in a broad audience, kind in the light that current soul/R&B artists like Bruno Mars, The Weeknd, Anderson .Paak, and Leon Bridges are in. I want everyone from children to senior citizens to listen and love my music.
Q: “Pluto” is a unique tune but accessible for all audiences. How do you stay true to your artistic voice?
JEHLAD: Pluto was written in a recent event of a fall out from a friendship I had. Staying true to your artistic voice means to want to be able to relate to what every one in life is going through, which are break ups and friendships that end. Our job as musicians and artists is to reflect current times, and it seems that every one is going through a lot in this world pandemic.
Q: “Pluto” definitely makes the audience hungry for more. What’s up next for Jehlad?
JEHLAD: I have a bunch of unreleased singles and music that I cannot wait for every one to hear, including a bunch of EP and LP ideas, a project with my band Moonshine Soul, and more!
Interviewed by Sarah Scott