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    Meet 1200. This Louisville musician, born Jecorey Arthur, is a big part of the emerging hip hop scene in town. Many of his musical ventures are daring and collaborative, including his most recent Music Makes A City project with Louisville Orchestra conductor Teddy Abrams. Let’s hear more from the man himself.

    Louisville.com: Describe your music to someone who has never heard of you.

    1200: "Conscious, symphonic, experimental hip hop, that features polystylistic sounds."

    LC: What’s your musical background?

    1200: "I have a Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Louisville. I have been performing classical music as a percussionist in band, orchestra, and choir since age 10. I began performing as a hip hop artist at age 18. I now teach, compose, and perform music, of all genres."

    LC: Why do they call you 1200?

    1200: "I purchased a KORG D-1200 at age 12. I saved up all of my birthday and Christmas money to buy it. I taught myself how to produce, mix, and master music. I was on the D-1200 so much that my friends started calling me 1200."

    LC: Where do you get your lyrical inspiration?

    1200: "I get my lyrical inspiration from life experiences, dreams, aspirations, and world views."

    LC: You like to collaborate with musicians of all different genres. Why?

    1200: "I collaborate with musicians of all different genres because I perform all different genres. Also, because why not?"

    LC: What is the United Legion of DOOM? 

    1200: "The United Legion of DOOM is a creative powerhouse founded by myself, James "Rames" Roberts and Drew "Deuce" Carter. We are a group of people who just want to push culture forward through artistic innovation. The collective features vocalists, designers, producers, painters, instrumentalists, and much more. We have many members in Louisville, but also members in Boston, Los Angeles, Germany, India, and elsewhere." 

    LC: What’s in the Louisville hip hop water? This scene is really taking off. 

    1200: "Grape flavoring, and a lot of sugar, because we all love purple Kool-aid. Hahahaha! I believe identity has taken form. Louisville hip hop used to be a carbon-copy of other regions. Now we have artists like Jordan Jetson, Bird Zoo, Dr. Dundiff, Touch AC, Jalin Roze, G. Stone, and more. We have our own sound. We are our own artists, and not trying to resemble what we think is popular."

    LC: What's one thing that could improve Louisville's music scene?

    1200: "The Louisville music scene improved so much in 2014. I believe the next step is further local support from people who feel detached from the arts. People have to begin taking ownership in the music here. I do what I do because I love doing it but also because I love entertaining people. I love giving people enjoyable experiences. I am the city's artist. Once people realize that we are not just doing this for ourselves, they will begin to care more. The scene will improve when people are proud to represent local artists."

    LC: Are you planning any big things for 2015? 

    1200: "I have a lot going on in 2015. I am very excited to continue my work with AMPED. That program is breeding the next generation of local musicians and it brings joy to my heart to see the kids' growth. I graduate with my masters in May. I will be doing features with many artists around the world. I recently became an organizer for Pecha Kucha Louisville. Teddy Abrams and I have some projects coming up. Please mark April 25th on your calendars. That will be Louisville Day of Music and it will be the most monumental day for Louisville music, in history. I am helping my cousin, Justin Summers, get his clothing line, LIVIN, up and running. I have an art group, in partnership with writer and creative genius, Lindsey Sprinkle. That is called Etcet Era. Last but certainly not least, I am starting a production team with my good friend Sean Vandevander. I am very excited for that. I am very excited for 2015 in general. I see major things taking place this year for Louisville."

    LC: If we were to find 1200 at one local establishment where would that be?

    1200: "I have been eating at Ghyslain religiously. I had lunch there with Kyle James Hauser a couple months ago and since then I've found myself there weekly."

    Upcoming 1200 performances include February 13 at Kaiju, February 20 at The New Vintage, and February 21st at Zanzabar. For a full listing of shows, go to 1200music.com

    Photos by Matt Hirsch, Steve Squall, Tom LeGoff. Video provided by 1200. 

    Will Ford's picture

    About Will Ford

    Covering Louisville music like it's the 6 o' clock news. I've covered Forecastle, Louder Than Life, Moontower, Starry Nights, and Louisville music news for 3 years. Follow me @parasiticnoise

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