J.Rocc and his crew, the Beat Junkies, have been a seminal force in the rise of instrumental hip-hop and were among a handful of DJs who transformed the craft into an art form. Along the way, J.Rocc has been making his own beats, and A Wonderful Letter — his letter to Los Angeles and his dedication to a lifetime of L.A music scenes — is only his second album. J. Rocc talked to rolling out about the album and what to expect.
What is the story behind A Wonderful Letter?
It’s really a letter to L.A. and where I grew up in Orange County, California. It’s also a letter to everything that’s influenced me and made me who I am as far as making beats and being a DJ and a producer. It’s about how everybody has a wonderful letter [at] the start of their name, it’s a play on that. It’s just an open letter to the things I love, for the most part.
What makes this record different from your first project?
This album has all the styles that I’m into. It has some hip-hop, some weird R&B, some electro, and some house music. It’s like one of my DJ sets, it goes everywhere. My other albums have always been less hip-hop, and just beats and some scratches, but this one is a little bit of everything, not just hip-hop. Someone called it “Hip-Hop Tronics.” I was like, “Oh, I like that.” I’ll take that one because you can’t put it under electronic because it’s hip-hop. but then you don’t want to just be hip-hop, because there’s electronic on it.
What’s the one thing you want listeners to take away from this project?
After you listen to it, I just want you to take away the L.A. vibe. I want you to feel like you’re in California for a little bit when you listen to it. I want you to feel like we’re going into different clubs. We open up the album telling you about all the L.A. spots, we’re talking about the drug deals, dope, and pajama parties. Then we go into the rave parties, and the house club afterward. At the end of the house club, we’re getting into the car and we’re driving home, and I got a nice little slow beat at the end. It’s kind of like a whole day of Los Angeles or a whole day of California. Not just Los Angeles, but Riverside, Oxnard, and all of Southern California.