In a darkly lit room at the end of the second floor hall in Eclectic, DonChristian is wearing a red eclectic society tank top and listening to music with some old friends a couple of hours before his show. On the last Saturday of September, up and coming rapper/producer DonChristian Jones ’12 returned to his former home at Wesleyan to perform with Cybergiga and FXWRK, a few of Don’s friends from his days in Eclectic. DonChristian dropped his first mixtape, The Wayfarer, on Greedhead and Camp & Street this past August. It’s filled with drippy, hazy beats that Don effortlessly weaves together with his deep, gliding vocals and lyrics that he says are “about sometimes not knowing what to do next.”
Before moving to New York post-Wesleyan to pursue a career in music, DonChristian returned to his hometown of Germantown, Pennsylvania. “I went home for a couple of months, but I missed my friends, they were all in New York...[they were] my resources.” Upon arriving in New York, Don worked in an Italian restaurant in Brooklyn alongside Cybergiga, Sam Lyons ‘12. Jones’ life in the restaurant business, however, was rather ephemeral; he’s now working his dream job painting murals for an arts non-profit in Brooklyn called Groundswell. “It’s the best job I’ve ever had,” Don admitted. Despite his ideal, exciting post-graduate job, Jones admits, "I'm not entirely stable or self sufficient. I very much want to travel wherever I can. I've been to Europe but I want to see other places."
Luckily, DonChristian appears to have a great network of friends aiding in fostering his music career. Jones admits that he is starting to “consider all my true friends my family”. Le1f is one of Don’s closest friends, and Don is not afraid to admit that he’s learning a lot from the recently hyped musician. “Le1f has been making music since he was in high school” Don explains. “Having met him [at Wesleyan] was very inspiring and he soon became one of my best friends, as did Sam (Cybergiga) and a bunch of other people.” In fact, Le1f was recently featured on DonChrisitian’s song “Morning Glory” from The Wayfairer mixtape. "The whole thing is very casual,” Don says of his working relationship with Le1f. “We'll make a song because we made a joke on the street. And then we'll get excited because it actually sounds good.” The music video for “My Crew”, DonChristian’s latest single, features Le1f alongside fellow Wesleyan pal Cybergiga and a host of other close friends and fellow Wesleyan graduates. "It came so easy and happened so fast,” says Don about the video. “I essentially had a dream of playing this tennis match against my estranged friend from high school, and all my friends were there. So I told my friend [and director] Sam Jones about it and he said I should make it into a music video.” “My Crew,” he explains, “is about being okay with whatever happens because you have good people around you.”
In the near future, Don hopes to work with Wavy Spice, “this Dominican girl rapper. She’s a friend of friends. I should probably tell her that before I interview about it.” Be on the look out for DonChristian’s next project, Renzo Piano, named for the Italian architect. “Its lounge-y R&B,” he explains. “I’m going to produce and work with a bunch of the same people [from The Wayfarer]. It’ll be atmospheric and spacey stuff about program and architecturalism. I’m going to try and embody architecture within rap. I’m going to try hard, it should be weird if I do it.”
Listen to The Wayfarer below.