Former "Freestyle Friday" champ Jin speaks on breaking language barriers as a MC in Hong Kong.
Following his win on 106 & Park’s “Freestyle Friday” and his brief stint at Ruff Ryders Records, rapper Jin Ah-Yeung took it upon himself to move from New York City to Hong Kong to pursue a music career overseas.
While in Hong Kong Jin gradually transitioned into rapping in Cantonese. He recently spoke to the Wall Street Journal about the move from making music in English to now recording in Cantonese.
“I would like to think that my English vocabulary is rather extensive, whereas my Cantonese vocabulary is relatively limited,” Jin explained to the Wall Street Journal. “What is in my Cantonese vocabulary is just a lot of day to day, you know, a little bit of mottoes and sayings here and there, but ultimately, there’s a long way to go.”
The Miami-born rapper also explained that he’s encountered both Chinese fans that have embraced his Cantonese raps and those who preferred his music in English.
“…Now, [they say,] while you’re rapping in Chinese, I actually know what you’re talking about,” said Jin. “I feel closer to you now because at least I can grasp the message that you’re trying to convey in your raps, even if it’s very simple…I also encounter Cantonese speakers who will tell me ‘Jin, I don’t really like your Cantonese raps.’”
Jin’s most recent project, Buy 1 Get 1 Free, was released on July 13 in Hong Kong. Aside from working on his music Jin will also star in a film about martial arts legend Bruce Lee which will be released in November.