Johnny Juliano x LabDummy Q&A: “GOONIES.NEVER. $AY.DIE!!”
ittsburgh’s Johnny Juliano takes some time out 2 talk 2 us about his new #NoFreeDLMovement, famous tag, work ethic, his yet to be released JJ Nexus Expansion, and more!
LabDummy: With producers like Jahlil signing to Jay-z’s Roc Nation, what makes you want to continue on the independent route?
Johnny Juliano: Consistency. The reality is independent artists consistently invest in their craft, as opposed to all the majors I’ve personally dealt with. They don’t talk much business. They ask for more handouts than the independents do. Majors are comfortable, independents are grinding like me, and it’s just a mutual respect.
LD: Earlier this week you mentioned how you dropped out in the 9th grade and “took a shot in the dark” with music. Why make such a decision?
Johnny Juliano: I believed in myself. There was no doubt in my mind that I would succeed. I believed more in my talent at a young age than I believed in getting an education. I didn’t have a support system in any way to pursue my dreams with music let alone with school.
LD: Any regrets?
Johnny Juliano: I have no regrets because a mistake is just something new to learn in disguise.
LD: Any advice you would give someone in that position?
Johnny Juliano: I would still encourage anyone facing this situation to finish school. Not everyone is going to make it, if I had something to fall back on I’d be alright, but I wouldn’t be where I am with my business. I’d probably have LESS drive.
LD: You and a member of J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League exchanged some words via twitter basically with him saying your were “selling yourself short” by practically giving your beats away. Thoughts?
Johnny Juliano: To each his own. Whether you take the high route or the low route, as long as we each get to the destination, isn’t that all that matters?
LD: JJ/JL collab? :D
Johnny Juliano: I respect them and their work for sure, but that’s probably not going to happen.
LD: Not too long ago you released a video via your youtube channel explaining your “#NoFreeDLMovement.” After years of having free dl, what made you make this decision?
Johnny Juliano: I just didn’t want to continue devaluing my work. People exploit my generosity and mistake it for free as in “FREE BEAT” rather than free download. More serious artists don’t want to hear everybody on that same track.
LD: A while back you talked about how you would stay awake working 3 DAYS STRAIGHT!
Johnny Juliano: A regular person’s day is anywhere from 14 to 18 hours up. My days are usually a minimum of two 24-hour periods. Nonstop building of beat skeletons, and really thinking of ways to improve my business overall. For instance, right now, I’ve been up about 48 hours and I’m in my bed lying down damn near asleep doing this interview while my wife types it up as I talk. Lol. Aside from putting in long hours of work, I have to make time for my family.
LD: I know you look at these forums and blogs around the internet about your unique mixing/sound/drums
Johnny Juliano: A great magician never reveals his secrets. As Albert Einstein once said, “The secret to creativity is to hide your sources.” My best advice, never use downloaded kits. Learn sound design, and the art of processing drums.
LD: What’s your equipment looking like now and days?
Johnny Juliano: I’m kind of random when it comes to creating. But, most of the time, since it’s more convenient, I’ll just load up a random VST and get to work. I’m more-so about being hands on creating something new everytime as far as synths (etc) go. I’m really big on sound design and creating custom patches/sounds/etc.
LD: When can we expect that new “Johnny Juliano” Nexus Expansion?
Johnny Juliano: The only way I would do it is if I could get REFX to get involved and make it official. We’ll see.
LD: Image-Line has released a FL Studio Beta for Apple computers. Thoughts?
Johnny Juliano: Luckily, I’m one of the few people to test the beta. Honestly, it runs pretty smoothly. The only limitation is that there is no VST support. Other than that, it’s got me very excited.
LD: Last but not least… Your tag.. it’s AWESOME!! How did it come about??
Johnny Juliano: I was visiting a local studio when a rapper was in the booth just messing around, imitating scenes from the movie “Braveheart”. We were all laughing. It was funny until I told him to say my website in that same voice, and since then, I just started using it and it took on a life of it’s own.
LD: It’s been a pleasure Johnny. Thank you for your time and I wish you much success!
Johnny Juliano: Thanks for the opportunity to reach out and share some things with you all. I appreciate the support and hope everyone continues to enjoy my music.
Questions Asked By Followers
@ACDaws: “@JohnnyJuliano yo JJ, what do you recommend starting first on a beat, drums/bassline/other?”
@JohnnyJuliano: “@ACDaws melody or sample first , then drums, then bass”
@JohnAAngelo: “@JohnnyJuliano you spend time on your mixing ..thats rare in the soundclick world”
@JohnnyJuliano: “@JohnAAngelo been doin’ this 10 yrs now, mixing is like breathing after you do it for so long lol , i enjoy it more than anything”
Notable Prod. Credits:
Wiz Khalifa: Ink My Whole Body
Soulja Boy : London
French Montana ft. Wiz Khalifa, Nipsey Hussle, & Big Sean : On It