Features, Reviews

First Day Feature: International Joe talks about his upcoming album “Just Landed”, Hip-Hop in Baton Rouge and more

When it comes to colleagues that have an entrepreneurial spirit I would have a hard time thinking of one more fitting for the title than International Joe. The Baton Rouge native has his hands in all types of realms musically. Not only is he a producer, better known as Joe On Tha Track, but he makes his mark as well as head of the city’s top blog thaantidote.com and as owner of Real Profit Entertainment. Last but certainly not least is his current endeavor, taking charge of the microphone as an artist.

Fresh off the release of his banging new single “Who U Playin Wit?”, we sat out to chat with the rising mogul in the making. With a new project “Just Landed” scheduled to drop in the coming weeks he shared details of it, how his new single came together, his view of the rap scene in Baton Rouge and much more. Read the full Q&A session below:

For anyone getting their introduction to you tell us about yourself?

I’m the owner and a music producer for the Baton Rouge record label Real Profit Ent & I’m the owner of ThaAntidote.com which is the #1 blog in Louisiana. I’ve worked with, produced, and booked  many artists throughout the south. I’ve been featured in the past on 1stDayFresh with records I’ve produced for for artists such as Marcel P Black, Bullet Jones, AU, Sean Elliot, & GBA to name a few. Just looking back I produced my first record way back in 2002. I’ve went by the name “Joe OnTheTrack” since 2002 and decided to switch it up to International Joe for 2020 which was a name given to me after a recent visit to Africa. I still go by the name “JoeOnTheTrack”  on producer credits but for these projects I plan on releasing it’ll be “International Joe”. With me having such a big influence in this territory and knowing so many artists throughout the south I thought it would be dope to release a project using all the resources that I have.

Louisiana in general has a very long history in rap and is very unique. How has coming from there influenced your own music?

Quite simply I am a product of my environment. I come from a family where they are apart of Baton Rouge history and was one of the first rap groups to ever come out of Baton Rouge, Louisiana in TMFC. On top of that, my brother is also an accomplished musician so it was inevitable that I’d have that influence in my music. The Louisiana style of the drums, 808s, roling snares & claps, the smooth feel of Houston, and the grittiness of New York is how I would explain my style in particular. I live this Louisiana lifestyle and it bleeds into my music.

Who are some of your biggest inspirations?

From a producer standpoint my biggest inspirations are Mannie Fresh, & DJ Paul & Juicy J. They cultivated the sound I like and create. From a record label standpoint J Prince (Rap A Lot), Master P (No Limit), Baby (Cash Money).  From a media stand point probably someone like DJ Vlad, Q from Worldstar, I also look at people like DJ Greg Street, DJ Clue, etc in a sense of putting music together with the influence they have to make records happen. Also, I’d like to give a shoutout to two guys on the production end in Hustla & Platinum Hands who I look at and admire the quality of work they put in and try to keep those quality standards for myself when I produce.

What do you think about the scene in Baton Rouge right now?

The Baton Rouge scene is a weird scene. We have such artists like Kevin Gates, NBA Youngboy, Boosie Badazz, Fredo Bang, etc. all representing us on a mainstream platform but we also have a growing Hip Hop Scene as well as a Rap/Street scene that is starting to pick back up the pace. Running ThaAntidote.com doing monthly showcases, being apart of the Fade the Flow series, and producing for a wide range of artists from Marcel P Black to GBA I typically see it all. The city has tons of potential to grown even bigger in the music industry but we need to educate ourselves better on the music industry and keep a high standard of quality music and professionalism. For such a small city you can actually make it out of this city and do well for yourself.

You just dropped your new single “Who U Playin Wit?”. It’s definitely a posse cut with a lot of features. How did it all come together?

The story is actually kind of crazy. I had originally did a record with Lil One The Champ for another project and I felt like the beat and track was a bit outdated but the verse was still up to standard, so I went to Hustla with the vocals and asked him to make a beat around the vocals. From there I ran into Dylan Cage at a Shop & Sip Event at Fashion Stop (a local clothing store in Baton Rouge and sponsor for my blog) and we discussed having this record but I didn’t have a hook or real concept for the song. So Dylan asked me to send him the record. In like a few hours he hit me back and told me he had a song for it, so we hit the studio like the next week and he dropped the hook and a verse on there. Once we got to that point we both decided we needed to add another hot artist in the city of the record and we decide to go with BBE AJ especially seeing him come off the success of his hit record “Doin My Dance”. Once AJ got on the record we decided it was time to put everything together and drop this record as the first single for “Just Landed”.

It certainly carries that Baton Rouge sound to it. Is this the direction you’re going in with your upcoming album?

Honestly, a big reason why this record was chosen as the first single was to provide the locals with a new anthem for 2020. For this project though, it’s a variety of sounds & styles I’m going for but based off the territory I’m in I try to give the people what they want as well and I feel like I put that type of music together well.

Talk to me about that album. What is the significance of the title “Just Landed”?

I was doing a listening party for some artists on behalf of ThaAntidote.com and I was outside talking my typical trash with a few artists at the event and I was telling them I was going to do an album and I was telling them about maybe using the name “International Joe” and I told them I needed to come up with a name for the album and Young Gage suggested “Just Landed” which is something I can relate to in regards to what I’m doing since I’ve been in this game for 15 years and never actually thought about dropping a project of my own. In a way I’m just landing with this one. 

What other details can you share about the project?

I’m taking it back to the days of Greg Street, DJ Clue, etc. with this project but on a somewhat underground tip. I’ve done so many records for this project I’ve already decided that I’ll be releasing a 2nd album later this year name “High Roller”.  I’m working with artists all throughout the US on this album. I have records with Dolla Black (Jackson, MS), Mike Mass (Tampa, Florida), Big Sant (Mississippi), Kony Brooks (New York), J Quest (New York), Vaygez Black (New York), etc on these next two projects. I got some fairly big names on both that I’m holding out on revealing. Of course I’m working with a lot of Baton Rouge favorites including Spitta, Bezo Luciano, Lil One The Champ, BBE AJ, Delwin Da Krazyman, Joe Scott, and more, On top of that I have the whole Real Profit Ent family and affiliates I’ve worked with over the years on this project. You’ll hear Bullet Jones, B-Thone, AU, Sean Elliot, GBA, Dylan Cage, D Matic, ThaGT, Spike etc. all on there. I even have a few Antidote personalities & staff on this album as well including Drea Kay, Legend Made, Tubbi, & Young Gage, I’m also working with a lot of producers who I’ve worked with over the years. On this Just Landed project I only have one song that I actually produced on this album. I have production from Hustla, GussMakeMyBeats, DJ4Feva, Dosha Burna, Ralph, and a few others.

Is there anything else that people need to be look out for from you?

Yeah, I’ll be releasing a lot of projects under Real Profit Ent this year. We have AU’s debut project releasing hopefully this quarter with his first single “2 Back” just releasing with the video hopefully debuting on 1stDayFresh very soon. We got a record with Sean Elliot & AU we just released as well called “Gangsta Song” be on the lookout for that video very soon. We got projects from Dylan Cage, B-Thone, GBA, Sean Elliot, Natural, Bullet Jones, & more all being released this year. We also have a few collaborative EPs releasing too amongst artists on the label as well as a label compilation. Since October we’ve recorded 70+ records for us to drop all in 2020.

What is the moment you’re most proud of thus far in your time doing music?

It’s hard to pin point the most proud moment but putting together and executive producing 2 albums that are critically acclaimed classics on the Hip Hop Scene of Baton Rouge in “Cry Freedom” from Marcel P Black which was exclusively produced by me and “Blue Collar Blues”  by Bullet Jones which is a project I produced tracks for and was the executive producer for. I know I’m probably forgetting something else but my memory is terrible.

If you could have a guest verse from any rapper ever what would it be?

That’s a very easy answer for me. Vado from New York. Vado has pretty much been my favorite rapper for the 2010s. 

Any last words before we conclude?

Yeah, please support ThaAntidote.com & Real Profit Ent. Just like 1stDayFresh we support dope music and dope artists who come from the Hip Hop & Underground scene. Be sure to get Just Landed when it releases, when I tell you it’s going to e one of the best albums you hear this year that’s no exaggeration. 

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