From leasing agent marketer to rising music star, Joshua Kareph aka Cautious Clay is now the name everyone can’t stop talking about. With his debut single “Cold War,” we knew that he would be an artist to watch for in 2018. Quitting his day job to pursue music full time led Cautious Clay to his debut EP, Blood Type, which dropped in late February. Now, after just a few months, he is gearing up to release his second EP, Resonance. Cautious gave fans a taste of what is to come with the EP’s first offering, “French Riviera.” Cautious has a clear lane of where he is heading musically and Music and Other Drugs were able to pick his brain on his upcoming release, what has gotten him here, and where he is going next.
MAOD: Thank you so much for taking time to talk to us today. How is everything going in your life right now?
Cautious Clay: Everything is great.
M: In reference to your artist name, what do you wish people were more cautious of today?
CC: Their friendships.
M: How did you get into music and what inspired you to pursue it full time?
CC: I have always been inspired by music in so many ways, and since I was a kid I’ve been playing instruments so it has always come very naturally to me.
M: The Blood Type EP is an incredible debut. What does Blood Type mean, and what is your favorite track from the project?
CC: Blood Type means identity / my identity so it is a bit broad, but it kind of sums up to be a grouping of songs about my interpersonal relationships. My favorite track [from] that project is probably “Stolen Moments”, which is probably my favorite song I’ve ever written to date.
M: You are preparing to release your new EP, RESONANCE, what is different about your upcoming project from your debut, Blood Type?
CC: The RESONANCE EP is definitely a brighter more direct perspective on how people see fame, style, and how we treat each other.
M: On the subject of resonance, what other artists’ sound do you feel has resonance?
CC: I would say Kendrick Lamar definitely has resonance because of his ability to reference so many different styles and nuances in music.
M: You recently dropped your new single “French Riviera,” which you both wrote and produced, can you walk us through your songwriting and producing process for the song?
CC: Recording / producing ‘French Riviera’ was honestly a pretty quick process. Sometimes you have records that come together super quick and this was def one of those situations. I used a lot of Ableton midi and lyrically I kinda free styled a bit then cleaned it all up to make sense especially in the bridge.
M: From all of the songs on your new project, RESONANCE, which song resonates with you the most?
CC:I would say ‘French Riviera’ lyrically as well as sonically is the most relatable for me.
M: For someone who is listening to your music for the first time, what do you want the listener to take away from your music?
CC: A sense of being able to relate to me and my experiences. I feel like songs like ‘Stolen Moments’ or ‘Blood Type’ can be very personal lyrically, and if my listeners can relate on that personal level it means all that much more.
M: If you could collaborate with any music artist out right now, who would it be and why?
CC: Kendrick Lamar or Kehlani, I feel like I like them both for different reasons but they both make music that feels true to who they are at the end of the day.
M: Do you have a favorite album of all time? If not what are some of your favorite albums?
CC: Some of my favoite albums: Speakerboxxx & The Love Below (Outkast), Songs in the Key of Life (Stevie Wonder), The Blues and the Abstract Truth (Oliver Nelson), [and] First Light (Freddy Hubbard).
M: Where is your favorite place to record music?
My favorite place to record would probably be my house because it doesn’t feel overdone or like i am working. Having a lot of natural light is a total necessity for me.
M: If you weren’t doing music, what else do you think you would do?
CC: Probably something related to geography or maybe anthropology.
M: It has been announced that you will be going on tour with Gallant, what can we expect from your live show?
CC: You can expect my incredible band and me doing interesting takes of all of my songs.
M: Speaking of live performances, what is your favorite live show that you’ve seen?
Honestly in terms of pure performance Beyonce is the top top. I was at Coachella this year and I was completely blown away. I would also say seeing Dominic Farinacci and his band was an incredible instrumental performance.
M: Last question, Music and Other Drugs formed from our addiction to music, what is something you are addicted to and can’t get enough of right now?
CC: I’m addicted to arepas right now.