By Jack Barnes
With a flow as unmistakable as his blonde dreads, J.R. Donato is one of Taylor Gang‘s rising stars. Flashing a rapidfire flow over a shimmering, reverb-drenched electronic instrumental, Donato reflects on the downsides of success on “Trust No More,” a highlight from his Why So Serious? mixtape, released last week. Meditating on lost friends and worrying about rappers who could not handle their success, Donato spits concerned rhymes about his upswing in popularity in the past few years: “Talk big get to feeling theyself/N*ggas burnin’ all their bridges get to killin’ theyself/Block hot, think it’s really gon’ melt/N*ggas tellin’ on each other and it really don’t help.” Enjoy this video stream below after the jump.
Though many Donato videos show off his party-hard lifestyle, “Trust No More,” premiered today by Vibe, finds him reflecting in the studio, giving us a glimpse into his creative process. Packed with head-nodding, percussive flows, rhythmic hooks, and clever lyrical couplets, Why So Serious? is a level up for Donato, boasting the strongest bars and song craftsmanship of his career. Featuring guest appearances from Wiz Khalifa, Sosamann, and Levi Carter, Why So Serious?, the proper follow-up to last year’s Fast Money & Freedom, equally appeals to party-starters and to the smokers.
Explains J.R. Donato : “This song is about temporary people and temporary relationships. I had a situation with some family shit, and there were those who supported me, and those who didn’t. I strayed away from the trap sound on ‘Trust No More’ and just made music about my life experiences ’cause I have a lot on my mind sometimes. I thought about all types of stuff I was going through, made a hook, and laid it down.”
A veteran in the rap game at only 22-years-old, J.R. Donato started rapping in his early teens, earning a local hit at age 13 under the name Young JR. During his junior year of high school, Donato supportedTwista on a regional tour and eventually caught the ear of Wiz Khalifa, who featured J.R. on his Cabin Fever 2 mixtape and later signed him to Taylor Gang Entertainment. Since then, Donato made a name for himself as a flow artist, making an appearance on the Billboard Top 10 peaking Khalifa album on the track“Make a Play.” Last month, Donato appeared again with Wiz Khalifa on “Stranger Things,” a loose single that sampled the theme song from the Netflix series Stranger Things, which earned over 1.22 million plays on Soundcloud. Why So Serious is currently available to purchase on iTunes and to download on LiveMixtapes.
Why So Serious Tracklist:
1. Back On It (Prod. by AP Kush’d Up X Steve Lean)
2. Cant Tell Me Nothin (Prod. By Mike O)
3. Movie Shit (Prod. By. Sledgren & RMB Justize)
4. The Boat ft. Sosamann (Prod. By Ricky P)
5. Trust No More (Prod. by Amp On The Track)
6. Pull Up ft. Levi Carter (Prod. By Capcom)
7. Let Me Show You (Prod. By Ricky P)
8. Trap Never Closed (Prod. By Ricky P)
9. Rotation ft. Wiz Khalifa (Prod. By Ricky P)
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