Just A Gent
Few artists deserve the title of “prodigy” more than 20-year-old Just A Gent.
After teaching himself to produce when he was still in primary school, in 2014 – at age 16 – Just A Gent scored a set at national festival Listen Out after winning a triple j Unearthed competition. That kicked off a star-making two years that saw him remix artists like Alison Wonderland, Peking Duk and ZHU, clock up millions of
SoundCloud plays on his 2015 single Limelight, get noticed by Skrillex and sell out shows around the country – all before he could legally step foot in a club.
Now comes Stories To Tell, out August 26, an EP Just A Gent wrote, produced, mixed and mastered himself from his bedroom in Maitland. At eight tracks deep, Stories To Tell is no throwaway release - it’s the product of two years of relentless creating and the drive to a make something that would stand the test of time. Sharing the EP is a milestone moment for producer Jacob Grant. “I’ve wanted to release something this big for a really long time and now it’s finally happening,” Grant says. “I make so much music - I have hundreds of songs sitting on my laptop - so it’s really satisfying to be sharing it with people.”
Two singles from Stories To Tell - the supersized Heavy As A Heartbreak featuring LANKS and fan favourite Loaded - have already done big things, the former hitting the #1 spot on blog aggregator Hype Machine and spending five months on high rotation on triple j.
Jacob’s influences for the EP were “drawn from so many places,” from the music of Odesza and Point Point to sci-fi movie soundtracks and video games. At the core the tracks are electronic, but they aren’t wed to a particular genre, running the gamut from bangers to experimental tracks featuring his own pitched-up vocals and chilled out headphones music. As he says, it was “meant to be a mix”.
Just A Gent also drew inspiration from the vocalists he worked with on Stories To Tell. Despite already being a star in North America, Grant chose to tap into Australian singers for his EP, from Melbourne’s LANKS to triple j unearthed darling Melissa Ramsay. Just A Gent says it’s about paying it forward to the local scene that he thinks, “Keeps getting bigger and better”. Many of the songs on the EP were sent back and forth between him and the vocalists; a workshopping process that Jacob says helped him see his beats in a new light.
Leading the EP is the emotive new single Rolling Dice, which saw Just A Gent collaborate with vocalists Ella Voss and Joey Chavez. “They sing in a duet almost and they work so well together. It almost sounds like an Angus & Julia Stone type of vibe,” Grant says. “It’s pretty amazing. They killed it on the vocal.”
The Stories To Tell EP is the latest in a year of big moments for Just A Gent. He’s just signed to Lokal Legend in the U.S., the label responsible for breaking Kiesza, and in July he premiered his first live show in a packed set at Splendour in the Grass.
Just A Gent covers Kid Cudi 'Day N Nite' for Like A Version
Just a Gent - Limelight Feat. R O Z E S (Official Music Video)