Olean High grad Jae Speccs an aspiring hip-hop/rap performer, DJ
OLEAN — An aspiring independent music artist who grew up in Portville and graduated from Olean High School in 2018 notched a featured singer role last year on a Salamanca rapper’s album that reached No. 3 on iTunes.
Jaeden Harris, whose professional name is Jae Speccs, attended Portville Central School through 11th grade. He went to Olean High School for his senior year.
He’s sung and DJ’d for three national hip-hop/rap shows, including sold out shows last year in Buffalo and Atlanta. He joins other Olean-area hip-hop/rap talent who have performed in Buffalo, Pittsburgh and elsewhere in recent years, including Ryan Carney and Hayleigh Federowicz.
Harris notes the album also hit No. 28 on Billboard’s current rap albums. It also logged it at No. 64 on Billboard’s current digital albums, No. 84 on the Top New Artists chart and on digital albums.
Some of Harris’ 2024 goals are to create more content and reach more people by utilizing social medial. He is signed to Childs’ Section III production company, sings and is a DJ.
Harris will perform at a show in Buffalo, which Childs is organizing for the Luna Lounge, on April 5. “We’re still looking for vendors and sponsors,” he added.
Harris is Childs’ DJ at shows and gigs. He’s also served as a DJ at everything from children’s birthday parties to weddings. A sample of what kind of music the client is looking for is all he needs. Contact him through Facebook or Instagram.
Harris said he was in a band and sang in middle school chorus, but drifted away from music as he grew older. After graduation, he worked in local kitchens and began to sing at open-mic nights at Olean bars.
“I always had a love for music after I graduated,” Harris said. “I made a couple of songs, but they were never released.”
He began following Childs on social media in 2022. Later, he saw a post from Childs saying he was going on tour and was looking for performers. “I was working at Third Base then, but I wanted to do music.”
He said he struggled with addiction problems since graduation, but he began to take his music more seriously in 2023 and has since taken control of his situation.
“I’m in the middle of making music right now to build up my catalog,” Harris said. On the tours with Childs, he not only is the DJ, but a featured singer who gets a solo slot at each show.
Harris sang with Childs as well as solo in Olean on Oct. 7 at Regulators after the 3:33 tour opened in Rochester and in Buffalo.
Harris plans to this year and make his music more like a business. It’s not just the music, but booking live performances, vendors and sponsors as well as designing and selling merchandise.
What does Harris say to people who are wondering how hip-hop/rap performers like Childs and Harris from Cattaraugus County are making an impact on the music world?
Harris said he and Childs made one song at his grandmother’s house in Portville.
“You can do anything you put your mind to,” Harris replied. “You need to act. You can’t get distracted. Doubting yourself won’t help you.” He is past those nervous nights at open-mic nights.
Reflecting on his own experiences with addiction, Harris advised young people in the area to “stay away from substance abuse.”