MUSIC WORLD: Introducing… Rewind aka Realness (+ Mixtape Download Link)

Rap has seen an emergence of rappers that come from decent backgrounds, possibly even college educated, that still spit some of the realest lyrics you’ve ever heard. Wale, Drake, and J. Cole just to name a few. Enter Rewind aka Realness. He doesn’t have to rap about slanging rocks or dodging bullets for validity. Instead, clever rhymes are crafted around clear stories showcasing his real talent. With the (oft-delayed!!) release of Rewind‘s newest mixtape, Please Just Listen, I was granted the opportunity to gain a little insight into the man behind the music. No edits, just his words. Check the interview below.

Government Name: John E. Gunter, Jr.
Age: 21
Location: Currently Normal, IL by way of Rock Island, IL
How long you’ve been rapping: MY WHOLE LIFE…Since 13
Website/contact info:,, DatPiff Mixtape Link

Why did you choose the name Rewind?? Are you that quotable??

It’s actually a 7th grade track nickname, iUsed to rap under “Lil ‘J’” but some dude was on 106 with romeo or something with the name and I had to get a new WuN. I remembered the name from a few years back, it stuck and kinda grew to have more meanings. R.E.W.I.N.D.-Realness Every Word, Indeed Notably Directed….And I’m dyslexic…Like I said it just grew. Shoutz out to A.P.

What’s your number one inspiration?? What made you decide to pick up a pen or touch the mic??

My grandmother dying is what made me really start writing, and Djay Cas made me start putting my work to beats.

Who would you say influences you?

EveryWuN! Everybody that’s ever said anything good bad or indifferent about any of my writing/songs influences what I write.

Describe your style. Do you fit into a category??

My style I would say is real. Not like most people say real…I mean dead real I’ve always spit like a kid that was too smart for his age. I got a commercial, catchy flow attached to real lyrics

How does being from Rock Island, a smaller city, affect how you present your rhymes??
A lot, every artist that I know on the grind like me is from Chicago, and I don’t sound like them. It’s a double edged sword though, a lot of people don’t want to hear you spit when I’m sayin’ “Rocktown” this and “the town” that when they don’t know where the hell Rock Island is.

Does your personal fashion style reflect your music??

Yeah, you can tell by my style that I’m unorthodox…I don’t follow the rules of what people told me was cool. Same with my music, that just me, I kind of do what I feel like is cool, and I always will…I tend to not fit in

Any comparisons to other artists…

It used to be Murphy Lee, we looked similar, Midwest artist, and I was the kid of the bunch. Now it’s WALE…I don’t think me and him are much the same but some tracks and physically I can see the comparison

What artists do you keep in regular rotation??

Nas is my favorite artist, he’s ALWAYS in rotation, Kanye of course and Jay. Of course the new school, Drake, J.Cole, Big Sean, Wale…But iListen To Mostly Nas Ye, And Lauryn Hill Top 3.

In your opinion, who has had the best album/mixtape of 2010. I’m leaning towards Recovery, but I’m interested to hear your opinion.

I Love RECOVERY! Blueprint 3 was AMAZING. The Roots had a nice joint. Ida Kno…

I follow you on Twitter and I see your love/hate relationship with Wale {one of my favorite new artists}, why is that??

Its honestly not Wale’s fault it’s his fans. I feel like Wale is an amazing artist(I do dislike him not rhyming often) but I just feel like he’s just that…a good artist. People often try to make him out to be some super deep conscious rapper, and that he’s not, he has the same amount of shallow, about nothing tracks as every other artist, but he writes ‘diary’ ‘ambitious girl’ and all of a sudden he’s deep. I can’t stand fake hip-hop fans. The one’s that’ll say “I don’t listen to mainstream music, I listen to artist like Wale” and it just irks me that he gets away with being labeled what he’s not.

Do you like where the new artists have the potential to take hip-hop. The J. Cole, Drake, Wale crowd… not really gangsta rap, coming from middle class families, and stuff.

I love it…a couple years back…THERE WAS NOTHING! I was scared for what was going to happen to the industry. Out of nowhere these three artist mainly, take off with pure TALENT, lacing tracks with bars that make you excited again.

Since you’ve started rapping, what has been your favorite moment??

Man there’s soooo many. I think spitting at the Chicago Dunk Exchange was big for me. I really felt like I hit the next tier of being acknowledged and gaining exposure in my career. That or winning my second rapper of the year at ISU…I really felt loved.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years??
Lord Willin, Sittin’ In Atlanta with this B.S. and MBA making $$$

Upcoming shows or events??

You can catch me everywhere spitting on ISU’s campus, UofI and I’m trying to hitting SIU….but “iCan’t Rock A Show, iGot Exams To Pass”

I’ve watched as a fan and friend as John (not Johnathan btw), perfected his craft while I was attending Illinois State University.  I find his latest mixtape to be refreshing. It feels far from amateur and I highly recommend it. Maybe I’m just bias. Keep your eye on Rewind aka Realness. And make sure you download the mixtape.


About traysay8


Posted on October 1, 2010, in INTERVIEWS, INTRODUCING, Mixtapes, music, NEW MUSIC and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

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