Ear Hustle

Exclusive Interview: Chicago R&B Singer J-Lyn Talks About Music, The Industry And The Term “ChiRaq”

Queen J-Lyn

Chicago is a city that is filled with talent ranging from writers, producers, rappers to singers.  We look at people such as R. Kelly, Kanye West, Common, Chaka Khan and many more that represent Chicago. Rhythm and Blues was once the hottest genre in music which  over the last few years has lost its appeal to the young pop culture. Chicago singer J-Lyn has vowed to bring R&B back.

We came across the phenomenal Chicago artist  J-Lyn who can sing and drop a quick 16 bars. She has such a powerful voice that could take you to church as well as get you in a sexy mood; she has also traveled all over the U.S and abroad performing and working with some of today’s hottest artist. J-Lyn represents Chicago wherever she goes and is making major moves. She talks to Earhustle411 about her music, the industry and how she feels about Chicago nickname ‘ChiRaq“.


We know that you’re from Chicago; can you share with our readers what side of Chicago you represent and how has the city influenced your music?

I am from the south side of Chicago and this city influenced me because I come from a musical background and have always loved anything that had anything to do with music. I’ve always felt  from the things I’ve been through and done my life was set up to be a musical performer.

You have such a beautiful voice and can drop a hot “16”; who are some of the people who inspired you to become singer and a rapper?

Lauryn Hill, Missy Elliot, and Drake just to name a few

Some are born with the natural abilities and even though they are natural we must still train to perfect it.  What type of professional training have you received over the years to maintain your vocals?

I’ve been singing all my life but I briefly had vocal training through Pastor Lena Mclin who was also R Kelly’s vocal coach . To maintain my vocals I rehearse regularly either with the band or solo.

Over the past several years Chicago has been nationally recognized for violence, gangs and corruption. The phrase “Chi-Raq” is being used to describe the violence in Chicago.  How to you feel about Chicago being called Chi-Raq and what can we do to make positive changes in the city?

I personally do not use the term Chi-Raq because I have people close to me lose their lives in the midst of this Chicago violence. I think its sad that this behavior is glorified.

We are brought into this world to grow and leave our legacy for others.  What is the biggest impact in your life that you want to be remembered for?

One of the things I want to be remembered for is being and leader and not a follower. Also being a hard worker and striving to meet my goals and being able to adapt to change of any situation.

We listen to the song “80 In 30” by Avant featuring you and Chicago Rapper Kajun.  The song is definitely a bedroom banger; what was it like working with Avant and Kajun?

I definitely  love working with Kajun because he is super creative with the tracks and writing which inspired me to want to do better with my own projects. Working with Avant was pretty dope because I had a chance to see 1st hand how he puts together his projects and why he has had continued success sticking to his formula.


In your opinion, what is the most difficult part of being in the entertainment business?

The most difficult part of being in the biz is  basically which ever part your trying to get into. The performer part is pretty difficult because you just never know what they are looking for and having to be ready for the word no more than yes. To be a “performer” in this biz you have to seriously have a tough skin and be a people person. If you’re trying to be a manager,executive, or any behind the scenes position than those are a lot easier to do.

We watched several of your videos such as “Housemaid”, “Body Paint”, “Yes, he Does” and your latest one “To Do List”; you have been able to give your fans great visuals to go to you songs.  What video would you consider your favorite and which one was the most fun to make?

The video  that’s my favorite is Housemaid and that one was the most fun to make because I didn’t have to go to a lot of locations and I had a lot of my friends around me and everyone was really fun to work with!

There are many women in music such as Tamar Braxton, K. Michelle, Seven Streeter and Beyonce who represent for the ladies on the R &B side of music. How do you feel about the current state of women in R&B?

 I feel like there is not enough R&B music  out right now and I think its sad it’s only less than a handful of women R&B singers out getting a chance to do their thing. I think the industry needs to accept the change in R&B newer artists can bring to the table just like they have accepted the ever-changing rap culture.


If you woke up tomorrow and you were told this is it for you, you can no longer use your voice; how would you use your voice at that last defining moment to make a change in the world?

I would actively speak out against all the unnecessary violence in Chicago and try to see if law makers can create some programs or places for these troubled teens to go.

Your music career has taken you places such as appearing on the “Apollo” and attending major music event such as the “Grammy’s”.  What was the memorable experience at a major music industry event?

It’s so many but one was performing at the Pre-BET award parties and Grammy parties particularly Hollywood R&B live.

When can we expect you to drop some new material and where can your fans find you to connect?

This spring actually ill be dropping some material with my newer sound and people can purchase my music on iTunes. 


Check Out J-Lyn’s latest video ‘To Do List

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