“No Love” is a new song by R&B singer-songwriter Jay Maq. Heavily inspired by Caribbean dancehall sounds and styles, much of Jay Maq’s work is inspired by the range of emotions one feels in a romantic relationship. That includes “No Love”, the album’s first release that questions whether or not it is a crime to break someone’s heart. The song’s music video will release later this month. It features Jay Maq being arrested and put on trial for a crime of passion. Although its intent is playful, it has a more serious underlying message about how many people of color are unfairly arrested and convicted.
Jay Maq grew up in a small town in North Carolina but now calls Los Angeles home. His music is available on Apple Music, Spotify, and all digital platforms. He recently discussed his music and more via an exclusive interview.
Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you discover your love for singing?
Jay Maq (JM): It was when I was four or five years old. At church, there was a toddler’s choir and I was given a small solo. I think an early driving force was a combination of the applause and attention I received. Throughout my life I’ve found that during times when I’m not working on music, I’m just not happy. Working on this project and the anticipation and anxiety of releasing music has been a rollercoaster of emotions but good, bad, or indifferent, I’m happy to be heard, even if it’s by five people.
MM: What events inspired “No Love” and did you write both the music and the lyrics?
JM: I wrote the lyrics and the inspiration for them came mostly from failed relationships where either I walked in wanting something my partner was unwilling or unable to give me, or vice versa. We are all motivated to be with people for different reasons. Mine have ranged from financial, emotional, physical… you name it. I’ve been chased by people who had no idea what they wanted or needed and I’ve done some chasing myself. So to sum it up, the song drew inspiration from a bunch of bad decisions. The music was produced by Antonio Balderas (Eibyondatrack).
MM: How long did it take to shoot the music video and who came up with its concept?
JM: The concept came directly from me but was inspired by a late-night conversation with a few friends about breaking someone’s heart, cheating, and whether or not leading someone on should be a crime. The video only took four hours to shoot! I had an awesome all in one DP, Director, and videographer in Quenton Burdette, who really helped make the project what it is.
MM: How many other songs are featured on the forthcoming album and what are they about? Do you have a title?
JM: There is no title. I’ve decided to move in a slightly different direction with the release of the project. Instead of releasing an album, I’ve decided to treat this project as a series of singles. All fall into different ways I’ve experienced love or dating.
MM: What can attendees expect from your live shows?
JM: Live shows will have a range depending on the venue. Some will be just me on a stool with a mic and others will be fully choreographed productions. I plan to leave it all on the stage whether that be blood sweat or tears I’m ready.
MM: How did you find your trademark style and sound and what’s been the toughest thing about breaking out in the music industry?
JM: Considering that I’m just starting out and working diligently to manage my own expectations, things have been great. From my current perspective I’d say the hardest thing is finding my audience. Even with that challenge, I feel like it’s just something that you have to get up and do before you count yourself out. You really can’t succeed if you don’t fail a few times first.
MM: What projects are coming up for you soon and is there anything else that you would like to talk about?
JM: With the shift in direction of my project, there is so much coming. There will be a song dropping every month this year. There will be collaborations, remixes, and videos This song’s just the beginning!
Follow Jay Maq on Instagram and Facebook @ jaymaqmusiq.