Meet ote.jpeg, an avant-garde artist in the domain of anti-pop and hyper-pop, where the 'ote' symbolizes the job of being in the music industry, and 'jpeg' signifies the art of crafting sonic landscapes. This journey into the world of music began unexpectedly, sparked by a moment of rebellion when a friend convinced him to skip class. Little did he know that this seemingly rebellious act would ignite his passion for songwriting. Heading in the opposite direction of the conventional notion "radio-friendly" music, ote.jpeg consciously steers away from the mainstream, opting to explore uncharted territories in the vast space of sound. With an audacious mindset and an unwavering determination to challenge the status quo, ote.jpeg embarks on a path to push the boundaries of music, daring to see just how far his sonic innovations can resonate in the ever-evolving landscape of the music industry. Continue reading our interview below to learn more.
RIPDAYDREAM: I personally know you from directing the music video for your single, 'OFFTHAT', but for our readers can you dive into who ote.jpeg is?
ote.jpeg: ote.jpeg is a crew alias similar to something like A$AP Rocky or YBN Nahmir—except in my case there’s no crew. I release anti-pop/hyper-pop music under O.T.E. (OverThought Entertainment), which is less of a label, and more of a representation of the “business” that any artist unavoidably takes on when deciding to seriously pursue their art. The ‘jpeg’ makes it art, the ‘ote’ makes it a job.
RIPDAYDREAM: Music in a sense runs in the family with your brother being an artist as well. Is there anyone else in your family that has artistic talent and when did music come into your life specifically?
ote.jpeg: Music was always my brother’s thing, no one else in the family ever showed much interested—including myself. It wasn’t until a friend from high school invited me to skip class and write raps with him at his house that I realized how much I loved songwriting.
RIPDAYDREAM: What is it like being an artist in 2024, and is it hard to stay authentic in a digitally dominant music industry? What are your thoughts on this and what is your own experience creating/releasing music?
ote.jpeg: Never been a better time to be an artist. You can get an old digital camera for $20 and make a lil music video, you can crack a DAW and make a million songs for free, you can even post a single Tiktok and have like 500 new people hear your song that day. (Imagine how long it would take to get 500 new ears on your songs before social media.) The accessibility has made the space more competitive than ever, but I’ll take competition any day if it means I have cheap, easy access to making anything I want.
RIPDAYDREAM: Your two latest releases, 'Haunted' and 'OFFTHAT', are classified as Alternative if you want a broad terminology. I like to be more specific and breaking the songs down I hear elements of Hyper-Pop influence. I love the production and think your voice fits perfectly. Gives me Ericdoa and Glaive vibes, but with your own ote.jpeg stamp. Who are your major influences for your music and what direction is your music heading in?
ote.jpeg: Anti-pop, Hyper-pop, or Glitch-pop all describe it pretty well I think. I don’t wanna say my inspirations cause people will think I’m biting lol—but I’ve been listening to a lot of Rouri404 and Cybertrash lately. I’d like to think my delivery and writing style set me apart quite a bit, but if you listen to Rouri404’s “Numb” I’m sure you’ll hear the influence. I’d like to experiment with more electronic-pop and pop-punk specifically. I’m finding with each song I’m becoming less interested in making “radio-friendly” music and more interested in seeing how far I can push a narrative while still maintaining near-traditional song structure and some kind of cohesion.
RIPDAYDREAM: How does your creative process start? From the beginning conception of a certain sound to the final release there is a lengthy process many don't get to experience. What is your ritual before the audience hears the completed song?
ote.jpeg: I’ll often take 2-3 songs as inspiration that will guide the writing process, but it all starts with a specific concept. A couple years ago when an ex of mine moved out of our shared apartment, I finally had to move out myself because it felt like everything about the place just reminded me of her. Whenever anyone asked why I was moving I would jokingly say, “Because it’s haunted”. Pretty clear what song that turned into.
RIPDAYDREAM: Can you give us a sneak peek into any upcoming projects or collaborations you're working on?
ote.jpeg: I have a 4 song EP called “Performative Excellence” coming out in March. I’m getting feature requests for the first time ever which has been super cool, so once the EP is out of the way I’ll probably be spending most of my time on features, and putting together a mixtape of odds-and-ends songs that didn’t make the EP.