What's up my man.. thanks for letting Official Crates interview you. First of all.. its been a good minute... i first interviewed you about 10 years ago on my old website.. a lot has happened with you since then... i've seen a lot of product my brother... it's been good to connect with you again after all this time. how is life treating you?
Everything is what is it is brother, thank you for asking.
How long have you been producing? How did you start?
Well, I've been producing since the 90's. Matter of fact, my first official national placement was released in 98' on Penalty/Tommy Boy Records. I have been into the beats/music aspects of Hip Hop from day one! Although I started out as a breaker/b-boy, then an mc, I was always into the beats. So it started when I first fell in love with Hip Hop.
When we last spoke... i remember you had just completed a remix project for CL Smooth... now when i do my research... i see joints with Large Professor, Planet Asia, David Banner, 7even Thirty.. and the list goes on. You are doing it my man.. nothing but the deepest of congratulations. who else have you produced/worked with?
Thank you kindly sir, I really appreciate your words. I have been honored to work with both Lord Jamar and Sadat, as well as Brand Nubian as a whole (to include Puba). In addition to having worked with Roc Marciano, Royal Flush, Count Bass D, Prince Po, Diamond D and many others. All blessings that I deeply appreciate.
Are you still strictly using the SP 1200?
No sir. I set out in 2002 on a mission to use the Sp1200, in order to sort of re-entroduce Hip Hop to a sound that in my opinion was being forgotten. That beautiful machine represented one of the devices that aided in shaping a sound that was/is considered to be the "Golden Age" of Hip Hop. After releasing several works with the Sp, I determined that my goal had been met, and therefore it was time to re-new my history by moving to a different chamber. So with that in mind, I now create with the Akai MPC 3000.
I saw an interview with you on youtube.... called "the art of digging".. an in the intro you say.. "first of all.. digging..it is an ESSENTIAL PART OF HIP HOP PRODUCTION"...i couldn't agree more. I feel you... i need that grit for real. What is your opinion on the current state of hip hop?
Hip Hop is hemorrhaging... lol. We have gotten so far away from the artistry aspects of it that its just plain sad. Progression and pushing the envelope is a natural part of any creative form of expression however; the crap that out now is just sad.
Talk about the joint with you and the man Oxygen.. the now CLASSIC "Gone Diggin'".. that joint is crazy! Will there be a follow up?
First off, PEACE to the god Oxygen!! Thats my brother right there, word. Yeah man, that record was done real organically. I was up top (NYC) for Lord Finesse's bday party (if my memory is correct). I was staying in Queens and had some time to go digging. so myself and Ox got busy. We hit mad spots throughout the day, and upon arriving back at my hotel he was like "Yo! I'm going to write a joint about this digging experience!" Man, before we headed back out he already had part of the first verse written, it was so dope! Once I got back to Dallas, I was playing some of the samples I used on a joint I produced for Lord Jamar, for a friend and it hit me to use a certain type of break for the Oxygen record. So I hooked up the joint, sent it to him, and he SMASHED it! To this day, it is one of my favorite records. Word.
I know you still digging my man.. how long have you been digging? and I know you won't stop.. it never ends.. there's always some record from someplace that no one has chopped up yet..
Sir yessir! I've been digging since the early 90's.
I hear that.. I remember in that first interview you sent me the picture of you with the 3 Stark Reality lps.... 3! That's still one record I have yet to own. Now after all these years.. whats that one record thats still on your wants list?
Awe man, there are sooooo many! lol It's a never ending list, because I am always discovering new titles and therefore the list goes on.
Whats your craziest digging story?
Haven't had one of those in a long time, I've slowed down a lot since my recent move.
The website also has a “Top Five Record Reviews” section..i’d love for you to contribute one day… would you be interested in that?
Sure, but would need to give that more thought.
What is your process? Do you find loops first or.. do you match loops to drum patterns? how do you go about making a beat?
It really depends on the mood and energy of the moment. I create based on emotions, what ever record, sound(s), drum, etc moves me emotionally at the time dictates where I go from there. I may start with slicing up some drums or a horn stab, it really depends on the mood of the moment.
What upcoming projects are you working on?
I have several things slotted for release in 2016. But all I can say at this time is, I'm going in!
Any advice for someone just starting out digging.. or producing for that matter? What advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps?
The number #1 thing I tell people that ask this question or something similar is, at the end of the day be honest with yourself. Whether you are digging or creating art of some sort, be honest with yourself. Have dreams, and dream big, but chase those dreams for the right reasons…be honest with yourself!
Anything you want to add?
I thank you for what you do, SALUTE !!!
Any shout outs?
Peace to those who walk with me, I love, honor and appreciate you all.
Whats your contact info for anyone trying to reach you?