Jon Connor doesn’t have many home town role models to look to as far as making it in the music world. His hometown of Flint, Michigan hasn’t really put a dent on Hip Hop in nearly two decades, and the city is most well-known for things way more serious than rap records, and magazine covers. From a young age Connor has had to look inward for success, put himself and his city on his back, and approach music with a do or die attitude. “Growing up I didn’t have any plugs inside the game,” he tells me via phone just a few weeks after the release of his Season 2 mixtape, as well as being nominated for the 2012 XXL Freshmen cover. “I didn’t have any light at the end of the tunnel where it was just guaranteed that this was going to work. It was like, ‘this has to work.’ For me, rapping is, was, and always will be life or death because I come from nothing and that’s enough to motivate you.”
Connor’s work is starting to pay off. Along with the XXL cover, Connor has been able to tour the country, just released a new mixtape with DJ Green Lantern, and continues to be on the list of artists rumored to be next for a major record deal. Still, the Flint native remains humble, and keeps his hometown on his mind at all times. He knows where he comes from, and is determined not to remain there his whole life. In this interview, Connor talks about attending private school while growing up in Flint, studying the greats, as well as working with home town heroes such as Mateen Cleaves. Hit the next page for the full interview.