Beat producer Juan Cosby is dropping his debut album, Inhospitable Planet tonight at MOTR! Presented by Grasshopper Juice Records, Cinthesizer, and Invisible Library Records and featuring Blueprint, Eyenine, Coolzey, Ialive, Audley, Ronin, CJ The Cynic, AP (Counterfeit Money Machine), Travis Touchdown (Raised x Wolves), WeirDose, Satyr Circle, NonPlus, and Billy East (The B.E.A.T.). Tonight at MOTR, catch performances by WeirDose, Audley & Ronin, Juan Cosby, and Counterfeit Money Machine to celebrate the release.
Juan Cosby has shared the stage with Sage Francis, Sole, Milo, Cage, clipping., Open Mike Eagle, and Busdriver; and also worked with Blueprint, Afroman, Toki Wright, MegaRan, CJ The Cynic, and Spoken Nerd. In 2009, Juan launched Grasshopper Juice Records, which boasts an eclectic lineup of national acts including The Harlequins, Wonky Tonk, The B.E.A.T., and MC Longshot. The label's marquee event AYE Music & Art Festival is a multi-genre/multi-venue fundraiser that has become a pillar of the Cincinnati music scene.
It’s about damn time that Juan Cosby released his own album! We sat down with the one and only Juan Cosby to learn more about the release.
Tell us some background on the writing of Inhospitable Planet?
I've always had an appreciation for songs with instrumental "choruses", so when I first started putting the sound design together for these songs about a year ago, I made it a point to create strong, emotive synthesizer melodies. Instead of singing hooks like I have previously on the Counterfeit Money Machine albums, I took this as an opportunity to use different aesthetics to express myself. It turned out to be a lot of fun.
How did you decide who to have featured on the album?
I've made so many new friends performing with Counterfeit Money Machine these last few years. When it came time to put vocals on these songs, I just went down the list of rappers. I'm lucky to be surrounded by so many talented artists. Inhospitable Planet is basically just a compilation album of all my favorite rappers. I'm very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with such gifted lyricists.
Will there be any surprises at the release party on Friday at MOTR?
I considered showing up as my cross-dressed alter-ego Juanita Cosby. Juanita began four years ago as my way of supporting Cincinnati Pride, but she also helped me win the "Hot Freak" Fashion Trashy Award at the Cincinnati Entertainment Awards after-party a few years ago. I savor that award as much as my CEA wins.
What is next for Juan Cosby?
AYE in July, then more touring and recording. I'm working on new music with locals Haskell, WeirDose, and Counterfeit Money Machine, as well as Invisible Library Records founder Spoken Nerd down in Nashville. Nashville has become a second home to me and I love everyone in the scene down there.
There is also talk of putting together a live band for Juan Cosby that would include Alex Stenard of The Harlequins. He played bass on Inhospitable Planet, and I definitely plan on working with him more in the future.