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Jordan Ward Is Moving “FORWARD”

Written by on March 29, 2023

Stopping in Chicago on tour with JID and Smino, hip-hop artist and dancer Jordan Ward sat down with Vocalo morning host Bekoe to discuss his new album FORWARD and his own tour coming this May. 

Though he just released his debut album on March 3, St. Louis-bred hip-hop artist Jordan Ward is no stranger to stepping into the spotlight. Beginning his career as a backup dancer, he’s shared the stage on international tours with artists like Justin Bieber and Becky G. It was on one of these tours where Ward realized he wanted to take steps toward making music and becoming an artist in his own right; fast-forward six years, and he’s opening for JID and Smino’s “Luv Is 4Ever” tour, playing in front of sold-out crowds at arenas across the country.

Ward notes he is grateful for the touring opportunity — especially since he was personally invited to perform by Smino, who is also from St. Louis is seen as a hero by Ward and many others in their home city. Ward says this invitation has also opened his eyes to the range of opportunities offered by the music industry. 

“You have the industry, and then you have the art,” he described. “When you stick your head down, you go to the studio every day and you indulge in these stupid ideas… with your whole heart and love, and you believe, you might be able to use the industry to go out there and perform for thousands of people and bring people like me to open for you.”

 Jordan Ward stopped by the Vocalo studios to discuss touring and his debut album with morning host Bekoe. Rakim Winfert for Vocalo Radio

Even before living life on the road, he was learning techniques in dance classes and performing on the stage in plays and musicals. He feels being part of the theater community positively influenced him as an artist and a person. 

“Being able to go into theater gave me practice in building my own world, and building worlds with people around me,” Ward shared. 

His fourth project and debut full-length album FORWARD was produced by Lido and features artists like Joyce Wrice, Ryan Trey and Gwen Bunn. Ward notes the title’s meaning has four tenets; it’s a reminder for him to continue pushing “forward,” it’s dedicated to both his family and his younger self, “for Ward,” it’s his fourth project, “four Ward,” and since it’s his first album, it serves as a “foreword” into his story.

Staying true to his performance background, Ward continues to entertain audiences with high-energy performances on tour with JID and Smino — with promise to continue on his own tour in May. Morning host Bekoe sat down with Ward to discuss tour, his roots in theater and dance, his relationship with his mother and his favorite tracks on FORWARD.

Jordan Ward is set to return to Chicago on May 9, performing at Reggie’s Rock Club for his ‘TOURWARD” tour. Find more information on his website.

Keep up with Jordan Ward on Twitter and Instagram

Written introduction by Joshua X. Miller and Morgan Ciocca

Interview hosted by Beoke, edited by Morgan Ciocca

Photos by Rakim Winfert

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