In Due Time by Quezel
"I carry myself different and they know that."
The DMV is overflowing with exceptionally skilled creatives. From rappers, producers, designers, painters and singers, we have a variety of talent right here in our backyards. Juanzel Harris, a 24 year old, D.C. native, Bowie State University graduate and currently works as a educator, teaching film production in PG County, MD. To his students he is known as Mr. Harris, to his musical audience he is the lyrical Quezel. Music, sports and guiding the youth have been a big part of his life for some time now. He played football at BSU, while always making time for his other love, music.
Quezel's new EP, In Due Time, hit iTunes at the beginning of 2018 and has been on repeat for my music rotation ever since. It is the perfect blend of motivation and smoothness, my favorite song being "Getting to it". Another favorite song of mine, and it being his only song featured with another artist is, "Mood" ft Shayyy, another DMV musician. If you're looking for some new music to add to your playlist, you found it!
I had pleasure of interviewing Quezel and doing shoot at the infamous Record Exchange Store in downtown Silver Spring. Check it out:
1) Tell me about yourself, where you are from, where you went to school, your favorite things and your life growing up...
Born in DC. Spent time in my younger days going back and fourth from their and PG. I ended up living in PG County and going to Gwynn Park High School. Music and Sports have always been a major part of my life growing up, it was the thing I did when there was nothing else to do. Growing up if i wasn't moving, rapping or trying to sing, I had some type of ball in my hand.
2) When did you decide to be an artist?
I decide in college at Bowie State University that music is what I wanted to do with my life, after years of people telling me I had a gift for words. This was around the time i was graduating and moving on with my future from playing football. I decide that I wasn't just going to be anyone, and that I had a bigger purpose for my life.
3) Who are some of your musical influences?
My major influences are people like Jay-z, Nas, Drake, JCole, Kendrick Lamar, Wale, even new artist like Dave East and A-Boogie wit da Hoodie. Growing up I remember car rides where the radio would be playing and Jay-Z would come and it always had stood out to me. It was a certain type of sound, which made me go and find out more about what I was listening to. Once I did that other artist would appear like a Nas, so of course I would listen to them to.
4) What genre of music do you consider your work to be?
My music is Hip-Hop/Rap with soulful wording and clever artistry. I might even sing sometimes if its a good day. I'm a firm believer and never over stepping what I do on a track. If I decide to sing a portion of a song its not to be considered a R&B singer, its to add flavor to a track. Most of the time I stick to rapping though, very rarely will I sing a full song.
5) Where do you see your music career in the next 5 years?
In 5 years ill be one of the biggest artist in the world. I'm not afraid of the belief I have in my music, its about the people who I influence and the ones that can hear what i'm saying.
6) What makes your music different from other artists in this area?
I carry myself different and they know that. I don't have to hang around people with clout to get clout or be in every club move. I'm focused on the music and the future. Its too many artist in the area distracted and displaying false images of themselves and the people they be with.
7) Describe your music making process
I don't waste time in the studio so everything ready when I get in their. The beats sent in, the lyrics already on my mind, the hooks sharp and all I have to do is deliver. Me and my engineer normally do two full songs in like a hour.
8) What is a typical week for you?
I teach production during the day, then I coach in the evenings. I spend my days listening to music and my nights writing music. My days are none stop moving prepare myself for when I do make it big.
9) What are your thoughts on the current state of hip hop and R&B?
Hip-Hop and R&B are currently in a very good place, it seems like things are at their all time highs. You can see that by looking at the Grammy Awards and the artist they where nominated.
10) What is your greatest accomplishment so far, in terms of your music?
My greatest accomplishment was probably having my music played on the radio. I feel like this, just because everyone in the area heard me at that moment.
11) What popular artist would you love to work with now and why?
Drake. No Question. Everything bro drops goes crazy everywhere. He really can probably get away with almost saying anything on a track.
12) How would you describe your style?
I'm a true story teller, as in these things that I say in my music really are things I've done and or things that have played out over time from my past or even in the near future. I'm very good with my set up for my punch lines.
13) Tell me things about your album In Due Time, how did you come up with that title & what message are you conveying to your audience?
I was going through things mentally where I wanted "everything now". I wanted more money, I wanted Fame, I wanted to be liked, I wanted everything when I wanted it. Then I took a step back from myself and slowed my life down. I asked my self "Who You Wanna Be"? If you listen to my music its a full transition of who I became last year. I went from throwing shots and worrying about the people who didn't really care about me, to creating "The Plan" for the future.