Birthplace/current residency: I was born in Macon, Ga and lived there until I was 5. Then my family and I moved up to McDonough, Georgia (Henry County), which is a part of Metro Atlanta. Childhood Upbringing: I came up in the church, both my dad and granddad were both preachers so it was pretty much an embarrassment for me to have an interest in rap and hip hop music. Growing up I got in a lot of trouble for listening to the music that I was passionate about so instead I picked up sports, academics, and technology. I did pretty well in school and I was also varsity basketball, track, and cross country in high school. I pretty much picked up any accolade possible so that I could kind of make a case for why I should be allowed to pursue my dream. My senior year of high school I played 3 varsity sports, became president of the future business leaders association at my school, I did dual enrollment and completed two semesters of college at Clayton state university while I was still in highschool, and I even spent some of my free time attempting to program my own video games. A combination of all of those things helped me to convince my dad to buy me a beat machine.
Background: Since the beginning of my career musically I’ve always tried to stick to working with one artist in order to better mold my sound and create something new. I prefer to really produce records that I believe in, the sending beats back and forth thing never really felt natural to me. I’ve worked closely with artists and appeared on some of the biggest media outlets like Worldstar, thisis50.com, and Elevator. More recently I’ve been working to build my own brand in order to create the stigma that surrounds some of the bigger producers today such as Metro Boomin, Mike Will, and Zaytoven. With the weight that their names carry on their own, artists kill to work with them just for the exposure they can bring. In order to get to that point I’ve dropped two beat tapes that have been big for me and got me appearances on some blogs along with some attention from some better known artists on the underground scene.
Current Projects: Currently, coming off of my beat tape “Cartune Recipes,” I have been working on curating a mixtape with a lot of the top underground artists from Georgia, California, Chicago, New York, Florida, Memphis, etc. My manager and photographer have done a great job of reaching out to all of the proper rappers and blogs and keeping my image up as I work on this project. The theme of the project draws inspiration from the popular cartoon “Speed Racer.” The project will be titled, “Cartune Racers” and will feature songs from the artists mentioned over my production. I feel as if the theme matches because in the Grand Prix races from the tv show there are racers from all over the world participating. I feel as if this tape is one in the same because I plan to use this to link bring together a lot of the dopest underground artists in the country, much like dj’s do with their mixtape.
Follow Up Questions
1. How did you start producing and what gave you the motivation to stay with it?
The first rap album I ever heard was “The College Dropout”. After hearing that album I grew an appreciation for music and always wanted a chance to do the exact same thing. Literally that album gave me enough motivation to try relentlessly to get some equipment and start producing as soon as possible. I stuck with producing because it’s literally therapy for me.
2. What are some of the biggest mental tools you can obtain to be successful in this field?
Mentally the biggest tool you can obtain is to always be as honest as possible with your craft. You lose inspiration and motivation as soon as you sell out for what you think the people want. If your sound isn’t currently popular just stick it out or work harder. If you don’t follow your heart when you produce music you’ll be miserable and start having breakdowns. The best mental tool is to learn how to be so confident that its received almost as arrogance. As much as people may slander people who believe in themselves, the energy that they give off is contagious. Some producers may have better accolades than me but you’ll never hear me say anyone is a better producer than me. A person who is better than me doesn’t exist and never will.
3. Maintaining a successful career takes a lot of work and commitment,how much time do you dedicate towards your work?
Surprisingly I spend every minute each week working on my career. When you’re committed to this craft you quickly realize that sitting down and producing is only 10 percent of the job. You have to constantly build a brand, relationships, an image, and most importantly a mindset. I spend most of my time surrounding myself with the thoughts and inspiration necessary for me to produce quality music. The time I spend producing is drastically affected by what goes on in my life. The more focused and inspired I am, the better the music and I feel that is the most important aspect of my process.
4. There are times in a career when life isn’t going your way, how do you keep your mind on your work without losing focus?
I aspire to be an example and an inspiration to others and I’d be lying if I said that’s the case. To be honest that’s life, things happen and you will lose focus. For me when I lose focus I take time off, I get back to square 1 and I work on figuring out what went wrong and where to go from there. Once I’m completely over the issue, I get back to the music. But I literally stop everything, I wont do sessions, I delete all of the apps off of my phone. I fall off of the face of the earth because what good am I to the world If I’m not creating? Those moments are the best for me because I always come back better after those couple of days or weeks.
5. Do you work solely as producer or do you engineer as well?
During the periods of time when I was rapping and producing closely for artists I picked up the skill of engineering but I do not engineer currently and I’m proud of it. I hate engineering, to be honest I wish I had an intern to master and arrange my beats for me.
6. Do you prefer to work with big names or newcomers?
I prefer to work somewhere in the middle between those two. I look for people who aren’t big names but have experience and potential. I can smell potential and my dream is to produce an artist all the way to the top. I look up to those classic producer/artist relationships. The thought of coming up from a garage to the Grammys with one artist and a team is dope to me.
7. What’s currently on your playlist?
That’s tricky. I tend to purposely not listen to music, I don’t like to be distracted or inspired by new music because I can become impressionable and wish to make something similar. In order to run my own race I have to be absent-minded of whatever is going on out in the world of music. I listen to podcasts and interviews, stuff of that nature. But, if you forced me to get on the aux cord you’ll hear some inspirational music, some Nipsey Hussle, Kanye, old J Cole, old Kendrick, Rockie Fresh, Jay Z, Rick Ross. Those artists inspire me.
8. What’s your favorite record that you’ve produced?
My favorite record that I’ve produced is this song called “Work” by “Maui Max”. That song to this day is still very popular and it really put my place in the game in perspective for me. It also marks a time for me when I was excited that I’d be attending my first SXSW and I literally sat down with the artist and we made a hit that he went on to perform daily at SXSW and even at a show he was booked for in Atlanta for the Swisher Sweets brand. That was a big time period for me.
9. Would you categories your production into a specific genre?
My music mimics old hiphop that’s sample based and soulful and it mixes it with the new sound of trap that kind of makes it enjoyable for many audiences. In the future I’d love to make it to the electronic music scene though because those productions kind of talk to you without even needing an artist much like hiphop in the 90s and early 2000s did. Beats like Jay Z’s “Song Cry” could stand alone and make you feel a certain kind of way without his vocals even being present. I like to build my beats to be able to stand alone and I feel as if the groove of electronic music is based on that. Catchy rhythms that can be hit songs with minimal to no lyrics. That’s my vice, it speaks to me.
10. PB&J with, or without the crust?
I did a whole interview without profanity, but I’m a grown ass man at this point. Keep my crust on my bread. In life you don’t get any bread without going through the bullshit, and if we’re being real crust is bullshit but you appreciate the bread way more once you get through it. (I guess that’s a good inspirational way to end this.)