“Born from two stars so the moon’s where I land.”
So is the story of Jaden Smith – the son of music and movie legends, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith. Jaden’s meteoric rise to film fame began in the movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, and his shot at music superstardom came in The Karate Kid’s lead single, Never Say Never with Justin Bieber – a song that has since been certified 5x Platinum by the RIAA. Not a bad way to start your music career, huh?
Older now, Jaden has moved away from acting, and is in a league of his own. After starting MSFTSrep – a clothing brand and art collective – Jaden has made huge leaps and bounds in the music industry. From the early indie days to the RocNation-signed artist we have in front of us, let’s take a look at some of the best of Jaden Smith.
10. The Coolest (from The Cool Café: Cool Tape Vol. 1, 2012)
Like the title says, this cool, relaxed track displays a young Jaden showcasing his laid-back flow with a personality to match. The rhyme scheme is detailed – in perfect contrast with the minimalist look and feel of the song.
Mr. Vicious with his misses // blowing kisses to his mistress // and his missus blowing riches like some hooligans
9. Watch Me (from SYRE, 2017)
Showing off his eclectic taste, this medley sees Jaden rapping over a thumping rock-inspired beat while mixing up soft and heavy tones in an anthem for the self.
I landed in Ibiza and I need a visa // I ain’t playing with you; this no Mamma Mia // Need a hottie-tottie with a body, yeah // I just spit the knowledge then I’m out of here
8. Plastic (from The Sunset Tapes: A Cool Tape Story, 2018)
In line with today’s autotune-backed, trap sound, this track has Jaden going on about the (dis)pleasures of today’s pop culture scene. Or is it perhaps touching on Jaden’s involvement in environmental protection efforts? Your call.
They know the vision is heaven-sent // I got their secrets with factual evidence // She want the ring and the bling and the valuable things // in the vault with dead presidents.
7. George Jeff (from SYRE, 2017)
Another free-flowing record, this one keeps your head bopping back and forth continuously. Check out Jaden rapping light-heartedly about life, love, and the luxuries of life, while subtly touching on deeper issues around us.
Yeah, my name is George Jefferson, the male Maleficent // You don’t know who you’re messing with, I ran for president // Cause our country in a deficit, my only testament // Is that we keep it so surreal, I’d kill myself to resurrect
6. Fallen (from SYRE, 2017)
A smoother record, this song has Jaden Smith crooning on the hook while rapping fluidly through the verses. Also, peep the Nike Air Mags on Jaden’s feet in the video. The whole clip is inspired by Back to the Future. Once again, another diverse record for the young, fashionable phenom.
Girl your eyes are like the open sea, the simple poetry // This whole generation, O.M.G // I see your soul, it’s older // We should build a city overseas, this country kinda cold // I mean they feed the children dopamine and leave them on the sofa
5. Beast Mode (Single, 2013)
Going back to a young Jaden Smith, this track is another display of Jaden’s lyrical prowess. Recorded when he was just 15, the song speaks to you from an artist well beyond his years.
Man, I treat my MSFTS like the Lakers – the court is ours // Look a nine-year-old in the face and say you’re in charge // It’s our time to shine little homie – the floor is ours // We’re the Neanderthals, let’s get rid of these dinosaurs
4. Pleiadian Medicine (from Prakruti, 2014)
This one’s a personal favorite. While it might be a quick listen, from the instrumentals to the vocals and all that’s in-between, this track is FIRE. On a melodic, piano-based, hard-hitting beat, you can hear Jaden rapping about experience and delirium and much more. He’s on a different plane of existence on this record.
So Imma aim high to the moon to be exact // Imma just go and cry up in my room to be exact // And the pyramids were made // They’re not a tomb to be exact // And more of a frequency like a flute // Or a saxophone
3. Trophy V6 (Single, 2015)
Over a smooth jazz beat with hints of DJ scratches, this record exudes an old-school hip-hop feel – one that Jaden is known to make the most of. And that’s exactly what he does here, covering everything from real-life to imagination. In one verse.
Me and Obi Wan Kenobi went to find Jarobi // Lowkey I’m just kinda nervous to chill with an OG // They probably wrote me down in journals as one of the greatest // So when I leave this world, I want you to make me a trophy // And when I say make me trophies don’t make me no trophy // I want you to soak me in gold and make me a trophy // And hopefully, you jokers’ll know it’s me // Cause when I leave this world, Imma leave with some poetry
2. Offering (Single, 2015)
The story. That’s what this track is all about. This is Jaden’s story about his dialogue with the world around him. This too, in just one verse. Give respect to the man’s complex rhyme scheme and alternating cadence while he spits. It’s not an easy task but it’s one that Jaden pulls of so simply, at the same time discussing his qualms with the universe.
You know I’m gonna tell you all the truth // That’s why we inspire the youth. That’s why it’s so important // That’s why I said no to those endorsements // That’s why I let my friends buy the Porsches // Cause people at our doors hiding out in Trojan horses
1. Icon (from SYRE, 2017)
Gotta end the list with the biggest hit thus far (rhyme intended!). Jaden came right out and said what everyone was thinking. And looks like everyone backed him up too. Check out Jaden’s greatest hit till date. And be sure to check out the remix with Nicky Jam as well!
I am just an icon living // Start a record label, MSFTS just did it // Interview cover, five minutes // We are too hot in the business
Of course, just ten songs aren’t enough to cover the great catalog of music Jaden has put together, but these ten are sure to get you off on the right foot. Keep shuffling through and you’ll certainly find some more tracks to pin your ear to.
Clearly, talent is hereditary, but major props to Jaden for developing a sound of his own, both vocally and instrumentally. As Jaden gets older and expands his creative universe, it’ll be interesting to see how he diversifies and improves his skill set; and if that skill set can attain the same level of commercial success his dad had. But regardless of how that’s done, his growth as an artist and actor are sure to be a spectacle worth taking note of. That said… scoot over, Big Willie; there just might be a new Fresh Prince in town.