Louisville music producer leaves BET's One Shot to reunite with birth parents

Jonathan Hay gives up One Shot for shot at family unity
Published: Jun. 6, 2016 at 11:42 AM EDT|Updated: Jun. 7, 2016 at 10:02 AM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Jonathan Hay's music career began in a studio in downtown Louisville. He stumbled upon 550 Studios in the 1990s as he walked to classes at Jefferson Community and Technical College. That's where his passion for producing music began.

Over the years, Hay worked his way into major ranks of the hip-hop industry, achieving a level few others from Louisville have. As a celebrity publicist he worked with artists such as Rhianna, Whitney Houston and Wiz Khalifa.

But the life of a publicist wasn't satisfying Jonathan. He couldn't shake his love for creating music and working directly with artists in the studio. So he recently returned to his first love for a new beginning.

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Part of Hay's fresh start includes a stint on a new reality show for up-and-coming hip-hop artists. He will appear as an artist mentor in BET's One Shot, which debuts this summer. The show is hosted by Sway Calloway and includes celebrity judges including DJ Khaled, T.I. and Tech N9ne, just to name a few.

Jonathan cut his time on the show short when he decided he needed to pursue an important quest in his personal life. He was adopted as a baby, and while the show was filming he learned his birth parents had been found. He immediately left the show to focus his energy on reuniting with them.

Hay's journey was not exactly what he expected. Speaking with his birth parents reinforced his feelings and relationship he has with his adoptive family. He is still working on building a deeper connection with his birth parents.

Turning his attention to his family situation did not slow down Hay's creative process. He is releasing two deluxe albums this month that feature major hip-hop stars. They are called When Music Worlds Collide and the Urban Hitchcock LP.

Jonathan Hay hopes his journeys in the music business and adoption process will inspire others who are traveling on similar paths.

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