You may be familiar with Memphis native Chris J from his role in Plies’ single “Put It On Ya.” Last year the singer/songwriter appeared on a segment of BET’s 106 & Park, sparking the interest of Big Gates Records who signed him to the roster. Things have been moving fast for Chris J ever since.
I hooked up with Plies through his brother Big Gates. He was watching 106 & Park and I was singing on the Wild Out Wednesday competition. That was the same day Plies came out with “Shawty.” Him and T-Pain was performing on there and the label was watching me. It was actually Plies’ first time on BET too. After that, Big Gates asked me to send more material to the label. I sent about 17 songs, from there they said they was interested in signing me as an artist.
Black Entertainment Television
When they first started Wild Out Wednesdays, I was telling my manager at the time that I wanted to get on that show. I thought it would be a good opportunity. He said he had the contacts and he sent an email to try and get me an audition. He got a date set and we had to pay to fly to New York. When it’s an opportunity I’ll take my last dime, my light bill and house note money, to be seen. I went up there and out of 500 people that auditioned, they were only going to call three people back. A week later, Pat Charles, senior writer at 106 & Park, he called and said, “Congratulations, here’s your date for 106 & Park.”
It Was All A Dream
Let’s say that life is pretty good right now. I am very happy. Sometimes I have to pinch myself. I haven’t even been with Big Gates for a year and everybody is knowing Chris J for the “Put It On Ya” record. Financially I will say that I’m blessed. I’m honored and I do pay my tithes.
I actually grew up in North Memphis, the same neighborhood as Three 6 Mafia and Yo Gotti. [But] what really influenced me was my mom before she passed. My mom was shot and killed when I was 11 years old. I was singing in church since I was five. After my mom passed, it became a dream for me to become a household name. My brothers were in a band and the older I got they said I could really sing. They actually fired their two lead singers and put me and my nephew in when we were like 14 years old. We were young, singing in the band, singing at black tie affairs, sororities, those kinds of events. That really inspired me to be a big time star and work on my own stuff.
I Got A Secret
I can’t wait for my album to drop. It’s called Secrets. We got about four or five major labels interested in me right now. There’s some meetings being set up. It’s gotta be the right situation with someone willing to invest in Chris J. I will say that I’ll give 110% and be a consistent artist. It’s not just two or three songs on my album that sound good and the rest are fillers, I’m not that type of singer. I want you to love my album from the beginning to the end. Plies set the bar for the label and I want to come right behind him. Unique Image and Zack King are on the label too. We appreciate music and we do it because we love it.