Being in this realm for some time now, I’ve come across a number of writers who deal with rock and whatnot, so that’s why I was intrigued to talk to Sophie Jackson. She loves all types of music, but really got into it when her heart filled up with hip hop and R&B. Today she writes about a variety of things, but says she doesn’t favor one topic over any other, but notes about reviews, “I also enjoy writing reviews because it allows me to sit and fully listen to a project from start to finish and take it all in.” And when she’s not reviewing, she’s working on the PR side of things as well as holding down a day job at Kent County Council in the finance department. Now let’s get to know more about Sophie like if she’s got an entrepreneurial spirit and more.
Kendra: Coming from a rock realm in terms of music blogging, you’re new to me. Have you always been into R&B and Hip Hop?
Sophie Jackson: R&B was definitely what caught my ear musically first and Hip Hop closely followed. I used to really be into Ashanti, Ja Rule, Nelly, Destiny’s Child in the early 2000’s and then in my teen’s I got more into Hip Hop as a whole. However my music taste is pretty diverse, my mum always used to play people like Simply Red, Tina Turner, Gabrielle and Seal, so I can quite happily enjoy the older stuff too. I just love music as a whole.
Kendra: Being that a lot of rappers go on to be entrepreneurs, do you embody that spirit as well when it comes to what you want to do with your own life?
Sophie: I definitely feel that it’s important to have those kinds of goals, I absolutely don’t aim to be working for other people for the rest of my life but I am also realistic in understanding that to become something as established as an entrepreneur takes time and resilience. You have to have a plan but also a plan B. By starting my own blog, I came into PR to and I certainly aim to have my own PR company one day soon.
Kendra: Writing can be a blessing and a curse. What’s it been for you?
Sophie: I think curse is a strong word but I have definitely seen both sides. The blessing side in terms of writing is when it has got me through some of the toughest times of my life, on top of my blog I used to write a lot of lyrics as it was something that seemed to come easy and was a great release. Writing has also been a blessing in that it’s opened many doors for me in a short amount of time and allowed me to go review some incredible events meeting great talent and also allowed me to travel the world to places such as the Netherlands and America. The only downfall I can say is that there has been times when I really just wanted to focus literally everything on the writing and making that a career which at the time wasn’t financially feasible so sometimes you have to take a step back get the so called ‘normal’ job and rebuild from a different angle.
Kendra: Hip Hop is a male heavy industry but do you feel blogging is pretty much unbiased when it comes to gender?
Sophie: I would definitely say blogging is unbiased when it comes to gender. There are so many different genres if you like to blogging same as to music that really anybody can become a blogger. All you need is a computer or a phone and you can write and upload anything you want. There definitely isn’t any biased in my opinion or at least I haven’t experience it.
Kendra: When it comes to blogging and journalism, it’s all about all you know in this industry, but why do you feel that is?
Sophie: Networking is absolutely the key in this industry because like you said it is a lot about who you know and you won’t know anyone worth knowing if you don’t network! That can certainly be daunting to some people especially artists because some would rather just do their music but even as an artist you have to know how to engage with people yourself to. Networking has really got me far personally.
Kendra: When you sit down to write, what song is a must to get your creative juices going?
Sophie: When I sit down to write it is usually to review a piece of work so for me to feel inspired to write something positive about it and be excited it needs to capture my attention within the first 30 seconds, if that beat don’t have an effect when it hits chances are I will lose interest. If the beat is on point, the lyrics are well constructed and I feel like I want to listen to the full song and then listen again then it’s a winner with me.
Kendra: If you had to make the perfect mixtape for an actual Netflix and Chill situation, what five songs would have to be on it?
Sophie: So hard to choose just five but if we’re talking Netflix and Chill I would say currently: Bryson Tiller “Don’t”
The Weeknd “Tell Your Friends”
Chris Brown “Back to Sleep”
Kehlani “The Way”
En Vogue “Don’t Let Go”