JopauL is a gifted songwriter, in-demand rapper, performer, and choreographer who is extremely energetic and dedicated when it comes to making fun, upbeat songs, portraying having a great time while enjoying life. Jopaul was born and raised in Staten Island, New York, into a middle class family and still lives there till this day. He gained the attention of the Platinum winning producer, Ebonikz in 2012, who is best known for his production with Cam’ron & Dipset. JopauL immediately began recording up tempo pop records which then caught the attention of Flo-Rida’s former Music Director and former Producer for Darkchild Entertainment, Dominic Domwan Durham.
Immediately after JopauL began working with Dominic “DomWan” Durham; Dom states, “Throughout my career I produced tracks for many artists. LL Cool J, Brandy, Ray J, Lil Wayne, Cheetah Girls, Monica, Carlos Santana and Yolanda Adams just to name a few. After JopauL and I recorded our first track, I knew he was a star and I decided he would be the next artist that I sign to DomWan Entertainment.”
- When and why did Joseph Lerner become JoPaul, and how did that moniker come to be?
JopauL: JopauL is actually a combination of my 1st & middle name “Joseph Paul” & really came about to distinguish myself as a brand new artist in the genre of pop after being known as “Lyric Inforca” in the genre of underground hardcore rap.
- At some stage you were also known as Lyric Inforca. What did that part of your career entail?
JopauL: Lyric Inforca is how i started out in the music world by being known as a venomous spitter on the mic with brain twitching metaphors & really was the foundation of the artist who i still am today. Hip-hop is something that’s in your blood, especially being from NY, so no matter what genre of music I’m in, Lyric will always surface to create a dope blend of genres for all my present and new fans to enjoy.
- As if the name changing was complicated enough, you even gave up music and went into corporate banking. How and why did that come about?
JopauL: I needed to pay bills and music money was great at times but was never consistent enough back than to sustain my lifestyle or even function as an adult. A failed longtime relationship caused me to face reality of the real world and I thought it might be time to hang up my mic and pursue something completely on the other side of the spectrum than music. While music was still my passion, it was several “scam” type people always trying to get over on me which caused me to embrace the corporate world & put music on the back burner.
- Did you learn any lessons in your banking career that could be useful to you as an artist?
JopauL: The banking world taught me structure & process while at the same time keeping me grounded with a level head instead of trying to sell someone that I’m the greatest rapper alive. It came with prestige & gave me a sense of purpose & taught me how to deal with people on a more professional level. It’s these traits that I acquired while in banking that enable me to converse with executives in an educated fashion where people know now that I can’t be taken advantage of & they even look at me more seriously.
- How did the meeting with Dominic Durham of Domwan Entertainment come about?
JopauL: While i was in an editing session in Redbank NJ, for one of my hip-hop videos to be released under “Lyric Inforca”, I was intro’d to Domwan from my videographer. His past credentials included Flo-Rida & Rodney Jerkins & once he heard me spit & watched my delivery on video…he made a suggestion for us to get in the studio and see what we could come up with.
- How has Dominic Durham impacted your career and do you still work together?
JopauL: Dom is a super talented producer & probably one of the best musicians I have ever met, and just by working with him has made me improve the caliber of material that I want to release. I feel you learn something from every producer you work with & I was fortunate enough to have someone that worked on some real official projects. It was definitely a compliment to both of our repertoires. We have successfully completed a dynamite album with “Time Of MY Life” with 12 smash potential hit singles so I feel we will always work with each other at some capacity but I’m real excited for the next phase of my career to branch out & make some great music with other talented artists & producers.
- Earlier on in your career you gained the interest of Platinum winning producer, Ebonikz and even worked with Ice T. What kind of an impression or influence did they leave on you?
JopauL: Ebonikz was a breeze to work with & the speed at which he was able to maneuver on the boards with me in the booth was a breath of fresh air. The beats were super high quality & extremely innovative which made for some amazing tracks that hopefully will be introduced on my next future project. Ice-T was someone that I looked up to since the days of head spins & windmills on linoleum rollouts & cardboard boxes. Once he embraced me into the crew, i observed the way he worked & operated as well as how he conducted himself in a manner that people knew he meant business & treated him with the utmost respect. He is definitely someone I credit as having the most influential impact in my way of life as it pertains to the business of music.
- What do you consider a really successful or high point in your career so far?
JopauL: I’ve had many wonderful achievements that be considered high points. The one that stnads out most is my performance at the Apollo Theater when I was presented with the Teen Peoples magazine “What’s Next Award” in the music category. Performing on that stage was like I high that couldn’t even put into words other than superfantasicallyterrificallyridiculous. When that crowd stood & cheered when my song was complete I knew I needed to pursue music as a full time career.
- How is the music and lyrics in your songs developed? Which part of these processes do you handle personally and which do you outsource?
JopauL: The great thing about being in this crazy business for so long is that i have numerous different paths i can take for the production aspect as well as recording, mixing & mastering so in a sense everything is done in-house. The lyrics are something i handle in its entirety & when it comes to the mixdown of the song i always am present to put in that work alongside the producer to make sure everything is perfect & to my liking.
- What do you feel your listeners should get out of your music?
JopauL: The great thing about my music is that I’m not selling a dream or the secret to life or anything like that. If even one line in my song causes my listeners to smile because of the way I creatively said something that it causes an inner chuckle….than I have done my job & that’s good enough for me. The grand slam effect is when they hear it and say to themselves…this kid got something and I’m gonna jump onboard & route for his success.
- What has been the most difficult thing you’ve had to endure in your life or music so far?
JopauL: The scammers are out in full effect & there is nothing stopping anyone from trying to create a payday situation for themselves. The false promises and fake promotional boosts & this one vouches for that one, but they in connection with each other, is enough to drive anyone mad. Trust is the hardest thing to come by and at the end of the day i can only trust myself & hope that my judge of character will eliminate the people who think they deserve a handout for doing absolutely nothing.
- If you had the opportunity to change one thing about the music business, what would that be?
JopauL: As much as i have been guilty of it when I was much younger…..people need to humble themselves & get off their high horse of entitlement & show some real work ethic rather than imagining that they really are doing something to advance your career. Technology has sped up the need for relevant content & with how much material is being force-fed into the mainstream market nowadays; people need to pool all resources together rather than relying on past achievements to be there strength.
- How do you market and manage your music career currently? Do you have a management team or do you control everything by yourself?
JopauL: I have a great team of people which all have a tremendous work ethic and there only concern is that i am successful & most importantly happy while doing it. All of them play a vital role but it’s a combination of everything that they do along with workaholic like attitude that really generates the reach to be seen. Using my own network of fans & supporters has really been paying off in a big way as i see the response time for engagement per post increasing more every day.
- In some press articles you have been likened to Pitbull? Do you think that comparison sticks, or do you find it annoying to be compared to other artists?
JopauL: I honestly don’t mind to be compared to Pitbull or any artist for that matter. As long as people are listening & watching deep enough that it even creates a conversation within their own brain of the assimilation to these known artists, it actually might even make them remember me a little easier, so whatever works. However, i do feel like I’m at the stage where people will start to recognize me as myself as an artist rather than making the comparison to any other in the musical field.
- If someone has never heard your music, which keywords would you personally use to describe your overall sound and style?
JopauL: FUN, EXCITING, PARTY are the 3 words best to describe my overall sound & style.
- Do you consider Internet and all the social media websites as fundamental in building a career in music today, and what is your personal relationship with the new technology at hand?
JopauL: Technology & social platforms are the new street teams of today and having a verification badge is your wrapped street team vehicle driving up and down the country unlike back in the day parading up and down the NY streets. I have fully embraced all social platforms and find its best way to stay close to your fans to get real feedback from the people that come out of pocket to support you. All my networks are @IamJopauL
- You latest release is “Party Started”. Could you tell us how this track came about and worked on it with you?
JopauL: The track is just a summation of what I live every day and to party is to enjoy life. Once Dom gave me the beat, I was in the studio within 1 day with the entire track ready to go. It just came to me as if it was meant to be there anyway. The video was shot by Chinedu Ernesto and to really create that perfect party tropical paradise i decided to take us all to Costa Rica in order to do so.
- I notice you have a few videos doing the rounds. Do you feel visuals are an important part of communicating your music to others? And do you have any new video clip in the works?
JopauL: We are in such a digital visual age & i strongly feel the consumers are so overloaded with material that you need to take that extra step & give high quality visuals to keep them interested amongst all the saturation of lackluster stuff. It’s another way to stand out in the crowd & with the help of Joe Puma, & Alliance Media…i was able to do just that. I have 4 new videos all ready to go starting with the release of my title track on my album “Time Of My Life”.
- Which artists are you currently listening to, and is there any one you would enjoy working with?
JopauL: I’m a hip-hop head by nature so it’s my 1st love when it comes to music i choose to listen to. I really like Dave East, Conan, Prince Pyligmy, but also enjoy Justin Timberlake, Justin Bieber & Frankie Zulfrino. As far as who I’d like to work with , there are just too many to name but I’ve always wanted to rap over a beat by Dre, Timbaland, Jermaine Dupri, & Rick Rubin & even do remixes with dance djs like Afrojack & Calvin Harris but most of all i want to work with Dj Khaled.
- If you had to think of a slogan that could leave a positive impact on fans, what would that slogan be?
JopauL: “We are all just here for a small cup of coffee, I’m just trying to drink it while it’s still hot” live your life for you and strike while the iron is hot and never let your fire burn out. Peace love and turn the music up!
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