Published on July 16th, 2021 | by Crystal Willis


Hype Interview: OBN Jay Opens Up About His Rough Childhood in New Single “Take The Time”

Louisiana-bred rapper OBN Jay’s brash, determined lyrics say a lot about his life experiences and ambitions. He began receiving attention for his late-2010s singles such as “Big Ole” and “Chess Not Checkers,” as well as collaborations with rappers like Quando Rondo and JayDaYoungan. In 2020 OBN Jay released a full-length project titled “No Commercial Breaks,” which featured the late King Von and Jackboy. This offering included “Dead Presidents (feat. Jackboy)” and “Trap Daily (feat. King Von).” Jay became an artist to watch on both BET and REVOLT off of this commercial offering.

OBN Jay grew up in Baton Rouge, where he witnessed crime and violence throughout his youth. In his newly released single, “Take The Time,” OBN Jay gives us a look into what it was like growing up in the south. The rapper, who just celebrated his 21st birthday and performed his first major arena show, sat down with us to talk about his journey from survival to breaking artist:

So far, you’ve racked up over a million views and were recently recognized as an artist to watch on both BET and REVOLT. Talk to us about your creative process and what keeps you flowing?

Creatively, what keeps me going is my performing at my shows and seeing how the fans react. When I feel their energy, I feel like I can make this career something way bigger. I just try to record every day and keep freestyling. 

Who are some artists and musicians that influence you creatively – dead or alive?

I’m definitely inspired by 2Pac, Lil Baby, Da Baby, Kevin Gates, Boosie. Right now, Yung Bleu, who is also signed to EMPIRE, is giving me major motivation and inspiration just in terms of his work ethic. 

What did you learn growing up in Louisiana that prepared you well for a career in music?

I learned a hard way of survival. My life was a bit tragic growing up, it was rough. It prepared me by helping me to not care about small stuff that don’t matter, distractions.  I feel like if I can survive growing up in Baton Rouge, I can survive anything. 

How do you feel you were able to break into the business and what’s been your favorite moment so far?

Probably, right now, literally. I mean, the team that’s working with me, the fans and people believing in me, the events I’m getting recognition at. 

What’s one think you hope people will take away from your music?

That I’m still human and just like every body else. I go through stuff too. My fans tell me often that it got them through a day or got them through a situation.

What’s a fun fact or hobby that most people would be surprised to find out about you?

Well, I’m 21 and just bought my first King Size Bed. I actually had the same full size bed since I was 5th grade. Even after I blew up, I was on the same bed my mama bought me.


Stream and download: “Take The Time”

Follow @obnjay on Instagram


Go behind the scenes of OBN Jay’s first arena show at Baton Rouge’s Raising Cane Center:

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About the Author

Crystal Willis is an Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, Entertainment Publicist and CEO of The Omni Firm. She is also a Transformational Life Coach and Founder of The Crysalis. Her personal story has been seen by millions of people on media outlets like Marie Claire Magazine, PBS, Blaze TV, Daily Signal and more.

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