In 2021, as the world looked like it was burning down due to the COVID-19 pandemic and global protests sparked by the murder of George Floyd, Seattle-born rockstar Ayron Jones was achieving his dream. That’s when his song “Mercy,” from his debut major label record release, Child of the State, hit the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Rock Chart, making Jones one of the few solo Black artists to achieve the feat. Now Jones is set to release the follow-up to that LP, Chronicles of the Kid. As such, he is the happiest he’s ever been, content in himself, confident in his stride. But what is the cost of this clarity? That question permeates his sophomore release. Indeed, what if the stories you wanted to tell hurt people around you? Would you still tell them? For Jones, the answer is yes. They’re his stories. And his honesty is the fuel that lights his powerful fire. To be human is to get dirty—or, in Jones’ own words, “Filthy.” It’s the struggle of being who you are that’s most important. And, as Jones sings on his new LP, he’s here for the crown, “The Title.” Hailed by American Songwriter as “one of the biggest names in the genre,” the artist, who has opened for The Rolling Stones and shared stages with groups like Guns N’ Roses and Public Enemy, is the man he’s always wanted to be. He’s given up any façade for the sake of embracing the very real fantasy of what it means to be himself. You can hear all about it on Chronicles of the Kid, out on 6/23.