“Whether it’s music, film, or any other kind of creative expression, I never want to put myself into any kind of box. I have spent a lot of time studying film and screenwriting, and really started getting connections through filming music videos.”

Check out the interview with Gill$ exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.

Skilly: Tell us where this all began. What is your history in the music scene?
Gill$:
I would say I’ve always been interested in music. One of my earliest memories is of me wearing a cowboy hat (huge on me) and holding a tennis racket like a guitar dancing to either Garth Brooks or Johnny Cash. I’ve always used music as a form of expression. I had leukemia twice by the age of 8 and I can remember just lying in the hospital bed with IVs sitting there coming up with song ideas.

What are the best ways to promote yourself as an artist? Any tips you can give us?
Before I started getting really serious about music I did a lot of YouTube videos. That really helped me know what worked and what didn’t promotion wise from the start. I think building a social media presence on as many platforms as possible is very crucial, another thing that really helps when starting out is finding online forums to share your music in.

What do you ultimately want to become in your career?
Whether it’s music, film, or any other kind of creative expression, I never want to put myself into any kind of box. I have spent a lot of time studying film and screenwriting, and really started getting connections through filming music videos. Film will definitely play a big part in my artistic future, but my ultimate goal is to be successful in my endeavors.

What is the hardest thing about being in the music business?
The hardest part of being in the music business has to be getting noticed. There’s so much talent out there and there’s always someone who wants to succeed just as much as you do. You have to work hard at branding yourself so that you stand out from everyone else in your own way.

What is it like in your city? What is the music scene like, and how is it like living there overall?
I live in Seattle which definitely has already made a name for itself music wise. We have a crazy amount of talent over here and you could probably go to an awesome live show every day of the year. The city is nowhere near perfect, but it’s home and there’s plenty of great people in it.

What are some of advice you can give and share to other artists who are still trying to come up?
I don’t think I’ve really come up yet fully myself but, I think devotion, hard work, and time always pay off. Just having the drive to keep making music, even if at first it feels like it’s going nowhere, is a great step. With enough drive you can do almost anything.

What is the best thing that’s ever happened in your career?
The best part of my career is feedback on my content of any kind. Just knowing people listened and formed an opinion and had a response to my music means I did my job. Even if it’s criticism it still got someone to take the time out of their day to really think about the piece of art I put out.

What is your inspiration?
I have a lot of inspirations, but I honestly never know what in my life I will later draw inspiration from. The first artists I listened to really inspired me like Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Akon, T Pain, Jay Z, Garth Brooks, Mumford & Sons, and LCD Soundsystem. I also draw a lot of inspiration from films and their filmmakers.

Do you feel anyone can be successful now in today’s world of music?
I think anyone with a lot of creative energy and drive can make it, but with so many other artists aiming for the same spotlight you really need to stand out and brand yourself as an artist to make it.

Where can we find you on social media?
YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ7T8X5f9crMFh1c1kMBsgw?
Facebook: www.facebook.com/Gill-551278838371570
Facebook: www.facebook.com/JaredKoonProductions
Twitter: www.twitter.com/jarheadmk
Instagram: www.instagram.com/jared_koon_