Lyric Jones Celebrates Solidarity & Getting By In “Got Bills” (Video)
Boston-born, L.A.-based Lyric Jones describes herself as “MC, Vocalist, Drummer,” while also noting that she is the only MC around these days who can play the drums, while she delivers her rhymes. Now this visual for “Got Bills” directed by Jones also shows she is an artist with a strong narrative sense and compassionate vision.
Starting out with a spoken-word intro, “Yeah, it’s funny, I remember being on my knees begging God for a job, like Lord, I just need a steady income to get myself together, you know, and then you just don’t want it anymore …” the video then tells the interlocking story of two women.
One has just been fired and is facing a bleak future, weighed down by feelings of responsibility for her young child, no clear options in sight. Lyric Jones plays the part of an Uber driver ferrying different people around Los Angeles and first meets this woman as she leaves the office, cardboard box in hand. Later, Lyric returns to help her as the woman confronts a decision that would pay her bills, but come at a definite price.
Throughout, Jones cleverly contrasts her desire to make it alongside “Pac, Biggie and Prince,” imagining “Jones next on the list” and the reality of life’s burdens as an artist on the way to the top, but not quite there yet.
Ultimately, though, the message of “Got Bills” is a positive one, celebrating resilience, faith and the kindness of strangers. This is also due to the Dre Phantom-produced beat, which has an appropriately poppy feel and works perfectly alongside Jones’s strong, clear delivery.
Last October, Ambrosia For Heads singled out the Lyric Jones-assisted Blu & Exile track “Constellations” as one of the highlights of their repackaged In the Beginning: Before the Heavens album. But Jones has already notched up some impressive co-signs herself: Sway Calloway has celebrated her as a talent to watch, while Jazz bassist, Esperanza Spalding and the late Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest appeared on her 2012 release, Jones Street.
In 2015 Jones dropped her Gems From The Cubicle EP that featured Tristate, Planet Asia and Rosewood as guests. Just a few days ago, Jones announced on Twitter an upcoming musical partnership with Clear Soul Forces’ producer, NAMELESS slated for this year.
Jones has an interesting academic background that includes three years at Boston’s Berklee College of Music and then full-time journalism studies at the University of Georgia. Remembering this, it’s not surprising that she frequently celebrates her “hybrid” status as a musician/MC. As she asks on her site, “why not do it all? Why can’t I be an emcee, Soul singer and Jazz drummer?”
“Music is music,” Jones says. “I love Hip-Hop, Jazz, and Soul, so the world is gonna see it, know it and hear it.” Judging from her most recent single, this seems more than guaranteed.
About Ready Or Not: “Ready Or Not” is Ambrosia For Heads’ platform for showcasing new videos and having you, the people, decide whether they are ready for primetime. Each week, AFH will showcase music from artists on the verge, looking for their seat at the table among Hip-Hop’s elite.