Jae Ali, True Determination


“When I was at the studio, it was my escape, I didn’t feel that pressure, that pain so bad that I had in my heart.”

One of the secrets to transitioning from an aspiring artist to a successful artist is determination and that’s just one trait that 24 year old singer/songwriter Jae Ali has always possessed. Jae, who was born Carlton Watson Jr. on July 10, 1990 grew up about 30 miles south of Chicago where he was surrounded by old school music and jazz. It wasn’t unusual to see his mother watching Soul Train or to hear his father sing along to the radio during car rides. Like most African American singers, Jae started in the church choir. His earliest memories were singing in front of a congregation. That wasn’t the only time he recognized the power his voice had on listeners.

Over the next two decades, Jae faced doubt and discouragement from others but he wouldn’t let the negativity hold him back. In 2009, at 18, he released his single “Bet She Like It” on Power 92.3 FM but the timing was wrong and his career didn’t take off like he had hoped. After working on new music while, Jae decided it was time for a change. In April of 2014 he took a train from Chicago to Los Angeles to stay with his cousin Tay Jasper. After the stint in southern California, Jae returned home battling depression as he coped with realizing that his music career wasn’t what he imagined. It was after much persuasion, that Jae once again become united with his love of music after meeting Chris Chemistry (a beat producer) who eventually pulled Jae out of the rut.

Jae doesn’t believe he fits into one box. There is a lot of Hip Hop influence in his music, but he doesn’t fall into just one category. Starting out he was an R&B singer, but now he admits that that label doesn’t always fit. Looking back over the years, Jae said that he has learned a lot. He isn’t as quick to give someone the benefit of the doubt. It only takes getting burned once to be more careful in who you trust. He also recognizes that being successful takes time, lots of hard work, and true dedication.

Official website: www.facebook.com/JaeAli
YouTube: www.youtube.com/PharaohAli

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