Corleone Flow by J Flow, When Life Beats The Movie On A Rap Soundtrack

If you want to feel first-hand how it’s like discovering a diamond that everyone overlooked before, this is it. It’s Corleone Flow. It’s the type of EP that reveals human nature through the recounts of the artist, in this case, J Flow from Brodheadsville, Pennsylvania. You get to be a child on the EP, to have your grandparents cook for you, to be in trouble as a teenager, to have an ankle monitor, to hustle, to lose your grandparents’ sanity to Alzheimer’s, to overcome it all and still stay a good person. You live a lifetime in only 6 songs.

When asked about the name, J Flow shares: “Corleone Flow is a spin-off and wordplay between my stage name and Michael Corleone from The Godfather. I have to admit I was inspired and influenced by these movies growing up as I was very in touch with my Italian heritage and side of the family.”

1. Story to Tell

The dreamlike initial sequence has a magnificent jazzy touch to it only being transposed to modern-day times through J’s ad-libs. “I got a story to tell/ Went to glory from hell,” proceeds the repeated hook that reinforces the song’s title. One must mention the slow-down before the verse, how the rich organic instrumentation elevates the overall vibe inviting the audience further in.

My life was everything but perfect/ But it made everything worth it/ Nights I was feeling so worthless/ Music brought me up to the surface/ Was told the struggle’s on purpose,” starts the rapper with a most substantial load of lyrics. The palpable realism conveyed by the narrative will form a strong association with the minds of independent artists. Probably the ideal audience of the Corleone Flow EP.

The flow is consistent, relying on a sing-rap synthesis, and as a result, it is just as satisfactory vibing to it as it is studying its message and wording style. J Flow is decidedly stepping up his pen game and songwriting quality.

Till I got away from those clowns/ Got away from the circus/ Now I’m seeing who’s down and completing the circuit/ I got a story to tell/ how I went to glory from hell/ How I’m refusing to fail/ So I’m coming up outa my shell,” reveals itself the essence of Story To Tell. This is a subject and life progression that allows J Flow to speak simultaneously on a personal and a universal theme.

The arresting honesty of the rapper meshes surprisingly well with such an exquisite sophisticated instrumental. This is the type of beat you’d usually hear braggadocious bars with but J Flow flipped the traditional approach and went instead for a soulful recount: “I remember selling them purses/ Whatever you needed come to me and I’m serving/ Sold some weed at 16/ Damn I was nervous/ But the money was easy/ Me and my team had that fire like a furnace.”

The last verse is heavily elongated in pronunciation nearing mumble rap-singing. We don’t know if the choice was conscious or not but it’s a spike in entertainment value as many artists let the second half of their song simply dry out and die out. J Flow, however, totally transformed his delivery by the end. Did we mention the man is becoming a better writer? Yup.

The song’s outro takes place mostly without J’s involvement and it remains as artistic as when it kicked things off in those first seconds.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer; Jan Branicki (DreamLife) – Music Producer.

2. Do it for fun

The acoustic strums seem to immediately combine realism with idealization and, as a matter of fact, J Flow’s phone filtered words point exactly to this: “We used to do it for fun. Now we do it for funds. Hehehe. Remember that?

The first verse opens as a sonic development of the introductory motif and then further delves into the subject: “Now we do it just because/ We’re trying to stay above/ This water so we can breathe/ Make these ends meet/ Feed our kids lunch/ Make their beds neat/ My kids want new shoes/ But rent’s behind weeks/ So I’m at work, working and applying on I need.”

The instrumental keeps the same linear and consciously composed dynamic as track number one. The unique ingredient in Do it for fun‘s music comes around the hook when the drums speed up and spread out when all else simmers down.

The second verse sees a lot of soul investment and art dedication from the artist: “Yea we do it for funds/ But we lost that feeling/ Just by making music/ I could touch the ceiling/ Feel my soul healing/ Peeling the pain away/ From the stress day to day/ Worrying about pay/ All those worries went astray/ When the pen hit the page.” Seems like whatever trials and tribulations the rapper has to overcome it is all worth it in the end for the mere process itself.

Do it for fun possesses finesse and charm majorly owed to the acoustic combination of the guitar and thick but small-sounding drums. Paired with J Flow’s almost religious dedication to his craft, the second record off Corleone Flow is a sentimental look into the past and its reverberations onto the present day.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer; Marko Mayers ( Moondive Beats) – Music Producer.

3. Root Of Evil

The hook by Clark Make Hits is evidently processed and modernized in sound aesthetic. The choice of words indicates a more commercial approach for Root Of Evil: “My fam will be the reason why I grind/ Woke up with this money on my mind/ Yeah, yeah and now I flex on all the people/ Money is the root of all evil.The two artists are in sync when it comes to the observation of their values and characters: they prioritize their blood bonds. We’ve already witnessed J Flow’s moral code in the first two songs when talking about his kids needing new shoes for example. Admirable in a world of me-me-me.

In this instance we see J Flow coming in with the fervor of a banger record. An exciting change of pace for the 6-track EP.

Money money money/ On my mind I gotta get it/ I know you know I’m on my grind/ If not then pay attention/ Since this pad met my pen/ I knew that I was destined/ These rhymes are a reflection/ I realize I’ve been selected,” raps the artist with a tremendous roar and a natural swag undertone to his delivery. J Flow continues to arrange his flow and bars as to fit the beat and match it in urgency.

They say the route is evil/ But I don’t believe that/ Imma get it ’cause I’m hungry/ Dummy can’t you see that?” asks the artist with a rhetorical intent thus dismantling any opportunity for the enemies to answer. The man is on a mission and you don’t have any option but watch it happen right in front of you.

For the second verse, the Rap artist chooses to engage in the personification of a formula cousin with the first verse: funny, get it, kid, detention, dimension, reflection, connected, selected. This is not something that underground artists do. This is what successful songwriters apply to enhance their earworms.

Root Of Evil inherits the family-based narrative from the first two songs but manifests its power in a more rapid flow, unequivocal high energy from J Flow, and a modern, excellently executed instrumental.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer.

4. F*ck Alzheimer’s

Personifying Alzheimer’s and flipping it is simply put, a genius move. Speaking to it as if it was a walking, talking entity makes it that much easier to channel your anger and frustration towards the disease itself rather than the devastating implications that set with it. That’s the core idea behind F*ck Alzheimer’s, the 4th track off Corleone Flow.

The melancholic mood lies heavily in the air being augmented exponentially by the stringent guitar strums. The lo-fi vocals hit with very few touch-ups, if any for that matter, and sort of pleading while simultaneously accusing the impostor: “Man f*ck Alzheimer’s/ Why you erasing their past?/ Taking all the memories we had/ Man f*ck Alzheimer’s/ It’s like ever since you came/ Nothing seems to be the same.”

Now for the following lyrics, no one is ready to actually sit through and stomach them. This is real life. This is pain. “I was impatient/ When you were patient/ Told me take my time/ And nowadays it seems time ain’t on your side/ I want to scream f*ck you Alzheimer’s/ Break down and cry.” Soon it’ll be us crying along with the readers if J Flow keeps up these raw, heartfelt, shockingly hard-to-digest lyrics. And yet, this is what makes track 4 a brilliant shock.

The Rap artist perpetuates the penetrating message and with uncommon realism, draws the audience in: “Grandma always cooking/ …/ Grandpa would strum his guitar/ …/ I guess they’re good when you have ’em/ Some days they don’t know who I am I gotta remind ’em.” And sure enough, to make sure that even the hardest of hearts will succumb to the magic of this song, the Rap artist hits in the feels later on the record: “When I was a kid/ You said I had an ear for music/ Taught me to play piano/ See it’s clear you’re the reason that I can do this/ ‘Cause you did it/ And I know you’re forgetting/ But I won’t forget it.”

While on the lower spectrum of the production of the Corleone Flow EP, F*ck Alzheimer’s comes to signify the most meaningful record of all via its journal-like lyrical construct and heartbreakingly relatable pain.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer.

5. Most Hated

Most Hated is filled with intimacy and connection for it features a music video in which we get the chance to meet J Flow in person. This is the guy who puts his family first, who has a knack for commercial song formats, who produces and engineers, and who openly declared Alzheimer’s his nemesis. Hi J Flow!

It’s funny when they talking money but never get it/ My family just got evicted but still I feel like I’m winning,” this permanent optimism of the rapper might make you wonder by now if by nature you’re a pessimist or if the creative talent found some fountain of positive thinking and is drinking a gallon of it every single morning and twice before sleep. And yet, when you look at the music video, the artist’s facial expressions are filled with lifelong experience and lessons. This is someone who’s been through it all. His bars are here to prove it: “Know homies that gripped the steal, no joke/ Don’t think ’cause we from the Poconos it ain’t real/ I had trees to fill a field, not the trees you use to build/ Be high for weeks with the team we built/ Any beat we killed/ And if beef was spilled it get flipped like a patty on a steaming grill.”

And a rightful mention goes to the fact that J Flow is ridiculously far from the usual rappers who use curse words to pack their bars. Besides F*ck Alzheimer’s which we all agree with though, curse words are nowhere to be seen or heard. This stroke of genius is to be treasured and talked about with admiration in public if we want young generations to be better than we were.

The soul-touching vocals running in the background take the position of a soft reminder of life’s hardships. They confer a cinematic effect to the brooding feel of Most Hated. A pairing more perfect couldn’t have been achieved for this type of song with this type of lead voice.

I give you me on these beats/ But they’ll never see my soul/ It gets cold in this state/ So many local love to hate/ I’m the type to show you love and hold a plate,” turns the message suddenly from flexing to vulnerability and it completely steals our attention and hearts. Why is it that the majority of artists we know and work with always detail how the local community doesn’t show off and show out to support their music but strangers always welcome them with open arms? Maybe because nothing hurts more than seeing someone from the same background as yours succeeding more than you do.

Been playing in this game/ Never settled in/ Them hunger pains/ In the back of the brain/ Is unsettling DVDs, weed, jeans/ I was peddling/ Anything that you need/ I tried selling it,” stands out a sequence out of the very long Rap. In actuality, if you follow JP Flow on his social media you will indeed notice how the man is always involved in trying new things, selling new things, giving away things, and he most definitely gives off the impression of an undiscovered sales agent or CEO of some major corporation. His mind works in amazing ways and his subjects of interest are always relevant to whatever’s happening in the world. Such as minting NFTs for one. Why do we mention this? So that you see the man is in all seriosity speaking and rapping about his own real-life experience. This is not an artist with ghostwriters. This is an artist that’s likely to become a ghostwriter for some famous face.

The haunting optimism mixed with the accumulated knowledge of a lifetime renders Most Hated a most beloved record of authenticity, respectability, and endearing affection for a man who’s made the highest quality lemonade possible out of some hard rock lemons.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer.

6. All My Life

The Rap resembling spoken word hints of some Kanye West unconventional-bordering-art type of arrangement. Of course, the Heartless mention (All my life they tried to set me apart kid/ Became Heartless but Imma finish what I started) makes the association even more pleasurable.

Regardless if I got to do it from the ground up/ Always got into sh*t my mom would ground us/ Said I was pushing my luck/ They tried to put a price on my head/ But sh*t, they can round up,” raps J Flow in a calmer manner than ever before. The humanistic possibilities are countless from here on out as we know the rapper possesses the acute talent of making fans feel they’re living through his eyes. That was literally illustrated in the music video for Most Hated when the main camera was being handheld by J Flow.

In the midst of darkness, J Flow always finds light: “So many cheated on me/ Didn’t believe love/ Hoodie up/ Weeded on the bus/ I need Jesus.” The sudden teleportation to the past that takes place via the swift change of tenses displays a trait of the top narrators in the game. You don’t expect to be present in that struggling moment since we were just recounting it from a future lens but when you hear I need Jesus you suddenly feel your throat tight and can hear the wheels turning while the hoodie covers your eyes and you’re sitting alone in the back of the bus not wanting to be disturbed by anyone. Goosebumps.

I lived in apartments where junkies sat on my step/ eviction notices ’cause I was late with the rent/ Ankle monitor officers watching my steps/ so how could I rest always trying to climb outta debt/ Always felt like a black cloud was over my head/ But I’ll always hustle so there’s covers on my kids’ bed,” we become first-hand witnesses of J Flow’s life story that’s unfolding like a thriller novel. This is phenomenal songwriting. Incredible delivery. Astounding sincerity. Every word and rhyme in J Flow’s songs has a purpose. And as we’re nearing the end, safe to say, the rapper has just set a new standard of narrating skills for the next artists on Blue Rhymez Entertainment.

After an equally reflective verse, we’ve reached the end of Corleone Flow. This soaring composition, this magnificent EP, this visionary writer is so up above in terms of substance and meaning that some may feel uncomfortable with the realness of it all. But that’s how one knows this is priceless. When it instigates feelings you were not ready to deal with. J Flow’s path to more media acclaim and popularity is barely starting out and it would seem that the rapper’s artistic caliber is just about complete in polishing itself before being marketed to the masses. A stellar artist that has so much to bring to the game.

Song Credits: JohnPaul Korovich (J Flow) – Artist, Songwriter, Recording and Mixing Engineer.

Make sure you add Corleone Flow to your playlist on YouTube Music HERE, on Apple Music HERE, on Deezer HERE, on Amazon HERE, and on Spotify below:

Written by Mariana Berdianu
Blue Rhymez Entertainment 
©2021

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