So recently I have been corresponding with Jin Au Yeung who currently performs under the name of MC Jin and he was kind enough to share his story with us.
For those who do not know Jin, he is the first Chinese American rapper to ever get a mainstream record label deal and he has recorded with many big name artists such as Wang Lee Hom a Taiwanese pop star. If you want to know a bit more about him please click here.
Chat with Jin
When did you start developing a passion for hip hop?
Around the age of 12 is when I first discovered this form of music called rap. I’d say at age 14 is when I officially fell in love with Hiphop culture.
What made you decide that you want to pursue it as a career rather than keep it as a hobby?
That dream sparked at around age 16-17. When I graduated from high school was a pivotal point. Especially with my decision to further pursue a career in music as opposed to taking the college route.
How did you manage to keep the motivation to pursue your career as a rapper instead of trying to find a safe stable job?
I had to do both.. It was just a matter of seeing how persistent I could be and how much I believed that this is what I was meant to do.
How did you support yourself financially before you started making money in your career?
I did the same thing anyone else did.. worked.
What were the major obstacles you faced when trying to reach your goals?
The biggest obstacle was probably staying dedicated and passionate about what I was doing. Sometimes setbacks can really be discouraging.
Its hard enough trying to pursue a career as a musician, you were the first Asian rapper to score a major record label deal. What is it that helped you do that?
Lots of determination and hard work.
You separated with your record label and decided to pursue your career as an independent artist. Are you making enough money in your career to support your financial needs or are you working another job to do so?
Currently, my main occupation is entertainer. Which includes music, tv and film.
What are the major lessons that you have learnt through your journey?
Through out my career in the last 10 years, I’ve seen the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. I just feel really lucky to still be doing what I love while taking care of myself and my family.
From your experience, is there anything you advice young people out there trying to pursue the same line of work not to do?
Be wise in who you choose to work with. You are only as efficient as the people you surround yourself with.
What is the one tip you have for everyone out there trying to pursue a rap career?
Don’t do it for the money. Do it cause you love it. If you love it, the money will come. If the money doesn’t come, at least you still love it.
Tell us about some of the things you are working on now?
I travelled to Hong Kong in 2008 to do some promotions for the release of my first ever Cantonese album. I’ve pretty much been in Hong Kong ever since. Beyond just music, I’ve been able to expand my career into various other platforms such as TV and film. Just humbled and thankful for all the opportunities. God has really blessed me in abundance. In regards to projects, I am hoping to release an English album later this year. It will be my first in almost 5 years, so that’s exciting.