He writes songs about the naughty things he does, and sings them with a voice as smooth as butter. Jesse Boykins III will guarantee to send goose-pimples all over your body, as you take in his soulful melodies.

What made you research on soul music?

It was actually my mentor and music teacher Ms. Shenita Hunt that got me listening to Soul Music when I was in the 6th grade.

What aspects of soul music inspired you the most to start writing it yourself?

I found myself in the moment of soul songs from an early age with such passion and emotion. The music spoke to me.

What is the Jesse Boykins III brand?

Connection at its purest form. I really aim to touch and inspire people who listen to my music. I mean, there is a long list of things I would like to accomplish that isn’t music, but overall I wanted to be looked at as one of the passionate innovators of my time. That is what my brand strives for – greatness in every way.

How did you feel when you achieved worldwide recognition with your debut single Tabloids, which reached No.2 on the Billboard Video Monitor?

Honestly…I was extremely surprised. I remember shooting the video with absolutely no budget in four hours! All I had was a concept I had come up with along with Dr. Woo and just some cameras! I didn’t think that BET would accept it, so, to go from that mind-frame to then being on the Billboard Charts is still crazy to me.

Someone said you have the ability to drop panties with a single note! Do you have the ladies falling at your feet now?

Ha!! I wouldn’t say they fall at my feet! I’d say they appreciate my art and my contribution to love.

‘Amorous’ is such a beautiful and refreshing song. Did you have a certain lady in mind when you wrote it?

Actually, I did. I wrote it about an Hispanic young lady who I was in a relationship with a while back. She always said “Te Amo” to me and one day she said it and I just became so inspired to write. It came so naturally – I was just sitting in my living room one morning and just started writing Amorous.

How do you get in the right frame of mind to write love songs?

I have a big imagination and like to tell stories…I just create a story and place myself in it. I think that’s what a lot of artists out there do.

In twenty years time, what would you like people to say about you and your career?

I always say I’m after timeless music. Hopefully I’ll still be relevant and I would want people to say they watched me bloom into something great. Whoever I would have worked with, I would like them to say they enjoyed every moment with me, and that anyone who’d listened to my music whether at my shows or just through their living room speakers, would have enjoyed it.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’m currently finishing up my 3rd release – “Love Apparatus,” to hopefully release later on this year. It’s mostly a collaborative effort with producer Machine Drum and will have a cinematic, lyrical and beautiful sound.

What is the naughtiest thing you have ever done?

Ha! Write songs about the naughty things I do…

What is the craziest thing a fan has ever done to you?

When people come from long distances to see me – I think that’s crazy! I’ve had a fan drive 12 hours to watch me perform and take a picture with me! But, it’s an honor really.

What is the worst thing that has ever happened to you?

Ha! It might not sound that crazy but when my external hard drive crashed that was probably the worst. All my vocal recording was gone – it definitely had me under a mini depression.

What would you say is the most memorable moment in your life?

I remember the time I had given my CD ‘Dopamine’ to the dopest voice trainer – Bilal. I was so nervous but a couple of weeks later I bumped into him at Robert Glasper’s birthday show and he walked up to me singing the words to one of my songs. It meant a lot to see he appreciated my work.

If I could give you an award right now, what would you like it to be and why?

Let’s see…The True to The H(Art) Award. It’s really hard as an artist in this industry to stay true and leveled in their music. I think I’ve done so and will continue to. It’s all I know.

Jesse Boykin’s first UK performance with a full band will be at Cargo on April 14th, tickets are £11 in advance. More details are available here.

Words by Melissa Lewars