Tag Archives: pete marriott

THE #REALHIPHOP FILES // featuring DVS JACKSON Esq.

today we have a nice chat with one of MY personal favourite emcees that i’ve not only encountered in the last decade, but also had the pleasure of working WITH in some capacity. and that’s signor DVS Jackson Esq. this man’s wordplay has long impressed the fuck out of me, and to have him included on Pete‘s #REALHIPHOP LP is something i was kinda hoping for (actually i wanted a whole project to materialise b/w the two, but this is a damn good start).

DVSVEE: before we get into it, could you kindly introduce (or re-introduce) yourself to the folks at home? how’d you get into this music thing and what continues to drive you to pursue it?

DVS: Hello, world. My name is The Most Honorable Right and Exact DVS Jackson, Esq. DVS for short. I started out as a public speaker when I was still in Kindergarten. As I got older, that morphed into singing, then poetry and, finally, Hip Hop. I’ve been an MC for the better part of 15 years, and loving every minute of it. My motivational factors are a genuine love for the culture, a feeling that I have something to say…and the knowledge that after all of these years of dedication I’m still skilled at my craft.

VEE: how did your contribution to #REALHIPHOP come about & had you worked with Pete before?

DVS: My contribution came from Pete asking. Pete and I have known one another for almost a decade. We have dabbled here and there creatively, but there has never been a project tied to us. A vocal guest spot here, a remix there, but never anything concrete. So, when Pete mentioned he had a project in the works and wanted me to contribute, it was just a natural progression.

VEE: what is your writing process like & how involved do you get with the producer when coming up with topics or themes?

DVS: My writing process varies. I tend to write very quickly when inspired or when I have an idea of the intended direction. As such, my contributions to #REALHIPHOP didn’t take very long. Pete has always had a very good handle on what he is trying to accomplish. He also allows space for the artist to express themselves. It was really quite painless.

VEE: this may seem like an overdone question to ask, but considering the album’s bold title, what is your own personal definition or interpretation of “real hip hop”?

DVS: That’s a tricky question. I don’t think there is a real definition of what you consider “real”. Reality is relative. For instance, if you ask me who I listen to in the whip…I’m going to say Roc Marciano, Action Bronson, classics like De La and Tribe…and that’s my version of reality. Now my son, he is a huge fan of Flatbush Zombies. That’s his reality and I honor that. And since I honor his opinion, as well as my own and others who may not have as much “love” for the culture in the traditional sense…I tend not to trash Hip Hop I don’t personally understand or appreciate. I just don’t listen.

VEE: what’s the last piece of hip hop music you heard that flipped your wig?

DVS: Chance The Rapper‘s “Acid Rap Mixtape” completely threw me for a loop. Here was someone representative of my eldest child’s generation who obviously had some sense of MY oldhead sensibilities. In addition, he made a very CHICAGO album. There are so many inside references that hit especially hard for someone born and raised in the Go. From wordplay to his homage to Chicago’s “Juke” movement to a playful irreverance i feel the artform is missing….I totally honor and respect that young brother’s contributions to the game.

VEE: last but not least, where can people go to check out your music or to get at you for shows or features?

DVS: Well, my latest LP “DVS 4 Alderman” was released on Windimoto Records and is available at most online retailers, with an expanded edition available directly at http://windimoto.bandcamp.com/album/dvs-4-alderman-bandcamp-exclusive-expanded-edition.

I also have 4 EP’s that I’ve released for the unbelievable price of Free.99 available at http://waldorfandstatler.bandcamp.com with my partner in crime/brother from another mother tREBLEFREE. tREB is currently screaming at me to get my vocals in for the next EP…so stay tuned as more Waldorf And Statler is on the way. Thank you sincerely for you interest…and tell Pete Marriott to hurry up and release this album so I can get my cheque. Dreams don’t run off promises, goddamnit.

V.

THE #REALHIPHOP FILES // featuring JAZZ

we continue on with our dedicated coverage of all things #REALHIPHOP featuring a short interview with Jazz, who contributed to a couple of the joints on Pete‘s LP. he breaks down his musical history, production/songwriting process and his thoughts on hip hop.

JAZZ (aka Mista Jazzluvah)VEE: before we get into it, could you kindly introduce (or re-introduce) yourself to the folks at home? how’d you get into this music thing and what continues to drive you to pursue it?

JAZZ: First and foremost I am Mista Jazzluvah, formally of the Hip Hop/R&B group WHISTLE. We had such hits as “(Nothing Serious) Just Buggin‘”, “Right Next To Me“, “Always And Forever“, “Barbara’s Bedroom” and “Chance For Our Love“. I have wanted to do music ever since the 4th grade. I got my start in 1985 by way of Kangol Kid and Hitman Howie Tee.

VEE: how did your contribution to #REALHIPHOP come about & had you worked with Pete before?

JAZZ: Well Pete and I go way back to the days before WHISTLE. We both lived in Flatbush, Brooklyn and rocked out in the same musical circles. He and I reconnected about two yrs ago and talked about me coming back and doing my style of R&B. From there he did a track for me and sent me some songs he wanted me to drop hooks on. I wrote the hooks to two joints (“Nice” and “Lookout“) and the rest is history.

VEE: what is your writing process like & how involved do you get with the producer when coming up with topics or themes?

JAZZ: Well I write what I feel. I am a songwriter/producer myself so I just get the vibe or hear the track and give my viewpoint of what I hear. There are too many so called producers who aren’t that at all. I am a throwback to the days of Quincy Jones, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, LA and Babyface, Gamble and Huff, Teddy Riley the list goes on. My Job is to make a song better. It doesn’t matter if I wrote it or not.

VEE: this may seem like an overdone question to ask, but considering the album’s bold title, what is your own personal definition or interpretation of “real hip hop”?

JAZZ: Real Hip Hop is hip hop from the soul. The kind of hip hop that takes you to a time and place that you cant forget. No matter what time frame or style.

VEE: what’s the last piece of hip hop music you heard that flipped your wig?

JAZZ: I am feeling anything that has a flow and substance with good lyrics. I will always love hip hop even when I don’t like certain rappers or songs. I came from the essence of the block party and tape days. I feel like I am a singing Emcee. I flow on R&B.

V.

THE #REALHIPHOP FILES // featuring LaVeda DAVIS

as part of this BLAUG’s ongoing coverage of all things #REALHIPHOP, we got individual interviews lined up with most of the artists and contributors to Pete’s project. we’re kicking it off with the lovely LaVeda Davis. she breaks down her art, her process and how she came to be on the LP.

LaVeda DavisVEE: before we get into it, could you kindly introduce (or re-introduce) yourself to the folks at home? how’d you get into this music thing and what continues to drive you to pursue it?

LAVEDA: Greetings. My name is LaVeda Davis. I’m a singer/songwriter originally from Miami, FL, and I have been singing as long as I can remember. My father played music all the time when I was growing up. I heard Luciano Pavoratti, Leontyne Price, Sarah Vaughn, Johnny Hartman, Otis Redding, War, Brooke Benton, Marvin Gaye, John Coltrane, Stevie Wonder, SalSoul Orchestra, Barry White, Issac Hayes, Santana, Ohio Players, Barbara Streisand, Dionne Warwick, Motown, Nancy Wilson, Shirley Bassey and many others.  I knew early on, that I wanted to sing.
I stay driven and inspired because I love music, and want to leave behind a catalog of great songs.

VEE: how did your contribution to #REALHIPHOP come about & had you worked with Pete before?

LAVEDA: Pete reached out to me and talked a bit about his upcoming project (#REALHIPHOP) and said he had a track in mind he wanted me to hear, and wondered if I would be interested in writing the hook and a few ad-libs if inspired. I fell in love as soon as I heard JunClassic. The track is dope, and I was humming to it immediately!!
This is the second time working with Pete. He remixed a single of mine (“Second Skin”), that will be released in the near future.

VEE: what is your writing process like & how involved do you get with the producer when coming up with topics or themes?

LAVEDA: Pete has been the only producer that had a theme in mind. Other than that, I am given free reign once I receive tracks. Generally, I listen several times, and let the music dictate what the story will be about. There have been rare occasions that a title will come first; and I will begin there. But usually, I will be lead by the mood of the track.

VEE: this may seem like an overdone question to ask, but considering the album’s bold title, what is your own personal definition or interpretation of “real hip hop”?

LAVEDA: For me, “real hip hop” is the raw, honest and imperfect soundtrack to our lives. You want to wear the message like a piece of armor.

VEE: what’s the last piece of hip hop music you heard that flipped your wig?

LAVEDA: Anything by JDilla, flips my wig. I haven’t a clue to what is going on right now. What I have heard, doesn’t make me want to hear it again. So when I need my fix; I go old school (Tribe/Pharcyde/Slick Rick/Poor Righteous Teachers/De La Soul/Raheim/EPMD/KRS-1).

VEE: last but not least, where can people go to check out your music or to get at you for shows or features?

LAVEDA: Thanks so much for the invite. Was a pleasure chatting with you.

For Booking and features:
bookinglaveda@gmail.com
Manager – Stevie Robinson.

My new single was just released on HSR Records (#42 on Soulful House/Traxsource):
I SECOND GUESS MYSELF

SPEECHLESS (The Remixes)

LET LOVE HAPPEN (EP)
FACEBOOK
SOUNDCLOUD
TWITTER #1
TWITTER #2.

V.

PETE MARRIOTT // Rap Demon (feat. DA’ LORD SUPREME)

RapDemon

Pete‘s comin back with a vengeance with some soon-to-be released material, possibly a double album: one side the new stuff, one the old. this joint from 1989, featuring Da’ Lord Supreme (one of a handful of emcees from Pete‘s original crew), might end up on the side labeled Demos & Masters, a collection of tracks from the late 80s/early 90s that Mr. Marriott has meticulously re-polished and essentially re-created. enjoy some quality hip hop & wait with me in anticipation for the full length release.

V.

Re-Introducing: PETE MARRIOTT

not long ago this blog released its debut mixtape series, similarly-titled: CONFESSIONS OF A CURLY MIND Vol. 1. it ended up being one of my favourite mixes to ever compile, as i got to be exposed to a shit-ton of new and old music i woulda never heard otherwise. among them, however, was Pete Marriott, a musician whose previous works had already spoken for themselves as far i was concerned. from him, i can always count on quality. after treating us to a rough cut of his newly-released vintage-era hit “The Kidnapping” (featuring emcee Romance) on the mixtape, i got to recently speak with Pete about his current status within all things deemed creative, artful even.

V: Mr. Pete Marriott! since last we spoke you were in the process of dropping “The Kidnapping”, the unmastered snippet version of which appeared on this blog’s debut mix series. the song got quite a bit of positive feedback, a lot of friends and associates would specifically point that song out to me as a highlight in the mix. so how did the release of the single go and how have the people reacted to it?

P: i’m very grateful people are enjoying “The Kidnapping” and that the hip hop world is finally getting the opportunity to hear my dude Romance. he deserves this success more than anybody involved in this record, so to see this particular record do well on the radio mix shows and how it’s charting is a nice victory for us.

i’ve recently done a regional radio promo tour flying from city to city visiting radio stations having lunch and dinners with DJs and bloggers to discuss the new record and our new imprint The BRKLYN Collection and day by day we’re gaining more support among DJs and Bloggers we’ve yet to meet with across the country and abroad. things look like they are moving in a positive direction.

V: it looks like you’ve got a GRIP of new stuff about to hit our ears. what’s in store/coming out soon, what are you currently working on and how is all this work impacting your life?

P: to introduce The BRKLYN Collection as an authentic music imprint we’re doing this Summer Singles Series of records i produced and remixed. “The Kidnapping” opened up everything and since then we’ve released an art house single featuring Killah Trakz called “Plant The Flag” which is also doing well on radio, a instrumental single called “The Rebirth of Mr. Soultronica” is on deck and we’re also about to drop a new art house single featuring JunClassic soon.

we also got a few new remixes on the way. i very recently done a remix for Frank Ocean that I turned in not too long and i got a new Erykah Badu remix i produced that i’m very excited about. Mark Fauver of the Aaron English Band and Noel Brass Jr. of Afrocop sat in on the mastering session with me for that one and their reaction to it was very positive which is a pretty strong indicator to me that i done a good job with it.

life has been busier than usual. there’s an interesting assortment of new records and artists i’m producing and two music related projects i’m not at liberty to discuss yet that’s on deck, but for the most part, my production and remix calendar is progressing very nicely which has been making this year quite a pleasant time in my career.

i feel very fortunate and i appreciate all the people who are seeking me out and those who have been very receptive to working with us. just good energy all around.

V: what is the “Art House Hip Hop Movement”?

P: aside from music i’m extremely interested in other creative disciplines such as photography, design, filmmaking and fine art. other musicians, producers and recording artists i’m friendly with share similar interests and i wanted to have an outlet to express myself in ways i felt the underground hip hop scene has limited me in the past.

the movement is pretty much about branching out and spreading your wings beyond making hip hop records and bringing visual arts to the table. i personally want more than just the music, so instead of waiting for it to come around i’m taking it, building with other underground artists and producers who feel the same way and we’re bringing something new and different to the table.

V: how are artists/producers attempting to stay true to hip hops roots in 2012? and is it difficult to engage a modern audience with sounds inspired by golden era hip hop or is there still a real hunger for it?

P: it’s a very interesting time. i’m seeing these very dope new cats like Earl Sweatshirt, Joey Badass and Rid Jetson doing an updated version of my very favorite era in hip hop music and loving it because it all falls right on time with my releasing music i recorded 25 years ago like “The Kidnapping”. it’s a confirmation of what these kids really want to hear and i’m excited about this, because we’re offering them the real late 80’s early 90’s flavor with my forthcoming album rather than a recreation of it.

i actually made records during the golden era of hip hop that sound like what the kids are doing today so to see what i done 20 plus years ago come back around full circle makes this is a very beautiful time for me as a practitioner of real hip hop music because it’s a personal vindication of sorts.

V: along with yourself, a cat by the name of DVS has been one of my fav hip hop artists for a hot minute. you recently remixed a joint from his new release, and now a full length collab LP is in the works. can you touch on that briefly or is it still too soon?

P: i’m glad that my helping DVS out with that remix got the mix show DJs to pay attention to him and open quite a bit of closed doors for him in radio, DVS is an awesome lyrical talent who i actually believe in as an artist, but as of now… a Pete Marriott and DVS album are not in my immediate plans. it’s nothing personal against him, i’m just simply recusing myself from the very idea of working on that particular project.

V: what’s your process like these days and what is your preferred gear?

P: i’m in a very good creative space right now. i meet with artists over Skype and discuss their musical goals and create music around that conversation. i’m not into stockpiling beats and making beattapes, that process is inefficient and a complete waste of time for me.

i prefer to build a customised record for an artist completely from scratch. that’s the way we did things back in the days and the music making experience was far better back then because we took our time and placed our energy into making a solid record rather than trying to hammer out as many songs as possible to see what sticks.

when i start working on a track i think about moods and colors the artist conveys to me in our conversation beforehand and i sample my drums into my Casio RZ-1 which gives me a great 12-bit sound. i produced my very first single “Let’s Make Some Noise” when i was 15 years old using that very same drum machine that’s why my drums have that extra heavy crispness to it.

i sample my stereo loops using my Ensoniq ASR-X and ASR-10 because they have a deep rich low end to them that sound and feel even better when i resample them to Maschine where i edit all my loops and drum sounds with great precision.

i also have a Akai S900 that i use to sample my Les Paul and Fender Stratocaster guitars and my Washburn bass which i record using Tascam 134 or 238 decks depending on how dirty i want it to sound.

and i have a modest collection of hardware and software synths like my Casio CZ-5000, Yamaha TX-81Z, Komplete 8 Ultimate which includes Kontakt and if i were ever to brag about anything, it would be about my Kontakt library. my Kontakt library is nearly at 2 terabytes as it is right now. i’m also becoming addicted to building equally strong libraries for Maschine, Massive and Reaktor.

there are some who may say that’s overkill, but those are usually the guys who are married to one sound and style. i’m a strong believer in being versatile and having a expanded musical range as a record producer so if i get to work with artists like Fiona Apple, Joss Stone or Taylor Swift I want to be more than prepared for that situation.

V: from what i can remember you’re a fellow champion of the lightweight but heavyduty FL Studio rig, one which i’ve personally used for over a decade. it seems every random producer i’ve ever met and had a conversation with chooses to utilise FL as their main (or secret) weapon. how long have you been messing with FL Studio, what are its overall advantages compared to more popular programs/setups and what led you to using it in the first place?

P: i’ve been a FL Studio user since version 2 which is the epicenter of my studio today. Alex Abellard of the Kompa band Zin’ introduced it to me at his studio in Brooklyn while working on a project together. i was very stubborn and not open to the idea of using software. in fact i was all about the MPC during those days but he made me realize how much easier it would be for me to do sound design with it and that’s how I got roped in.
FL Studio is extremely powerful and way ahead of its time, other DAWs are just beginning to catch up to it and i think what makes it much more valuable to me is that’s it’s such a flexible application that’s lots of fun to mix a record with, it’s almost too much fun which is why i think i spend so much time in my studio. it’s just addictive in that manner.

i’m currently mixing a single that has a very heavy drum sound with orchestral flourishes and jazz overtones. i’m able to create complex automation sequences that allows my string section to vary in levels during particular musical cues while changing room sizes and EQ settings within those passages, this gives the listener a true sense of emotion while listening to the song and i’m doing it so quick and smooth that these transitions are not easily noticeable, but on the subconscious level you’re feeling these movements within the mix and that’s part of what makes my production stand out.

FL Studio makes it simple for me to enact such complexities into my music because it was brilliantly designed to do so much while having a such a fun experience doing it. i don’t think there’s anything lightweight about FL Studio at all, it’s just a smarter DAW than the others.

V: you’ve also done work for other producers in terms of sound design but now you’re only willing to go so far as the mixing of the record. what made you come to this decision?

P: let’s put it this way. i had to make a business decision for myself as a record producer first and foremost, because it got to the point where the business of doing sound design for hip hop producers was no longer in my favor. aside from the money, i want my credit and these guys don’t want to give that credit up because the way they see it their fans, who are mostly aspiring producers themselves, will lose respect for them which in my opinion is a ridiculous notion.

i mean i understand the part where their fear of not being seen as super as they make themselves out to be could be derided, but the idea of you losing fans because you don’t really do it all in the studio is absolutely silly to me. i believe record production comes down to leadership in the studio, that’s why guys like Dr. Dre and Diddy had and continue to have great runs as record producers because they understand it’s about leadership first and foremost.

but then you got these guys who pride themselves as beatmakers and they don’t want people to know that a guy like me built their drum sound, programmed their synth patches, recreated samples for them. so i pretty much grew tired of it and decided not to do sound design for anyone else but me and i’m not gonna call out any names but some of my former clients newer records are not on the radio. is it a coincidence? you tell me.

now as for mixing, i mostly offer that service to beatmakers who don’t know how to mix a record let alone oversee a mix. there’s a lot of dope beatmakers out there but not too many of them are involved in the actual record making process.

as a DJ i used to get disappointed by this, but i’ve come to accept it for what it is thanks to conversations with Kev West who revealed to me that a lot of the artists don’t want to be produced by producers who’s name they don’t recognize, which basically is just another form of starfucking and that’s deeply sad. the majority of these new artists just want you to email them a beat and they record over it. i can easily go on the attack and point out how stupid that is of these artists, but why waste my time putting that sort of energy out there?

i’d rather work for beatmakers who have a clear idea of what they want their music to sound like and they can sell the artists on the fact that Pete Marriott, a veteran record producer with multiple major and indie label credits, will be on the mix. and if they are willing to pay extra they can get it mastered by the mastering engineer i work with.

that right there gives that beatmaker instant credibility and the power to take control and lead that artist’s record thus increasing their value and budgets. just like with my sound design i have a very selective client base, but the difference here is not only do i get my money, i get my credit too.

V: have you done work outside of hip hop? are there specific genres you’d like to tackle or do you go with the flow?

P: of course! i’m a record producer who just happens to do mostly hip hop records, because that’s what i’m known for, but i’m no way in any form limited to just hip hop music. i have depth range that extends far beyond hip hop.

i’m currently searching for the next Fiona Apple to work with. i want a female singer/songwriter that is on Sylvia Plath levels of poetry, yet bold enough to really go there musically, but i don’t want her to be an MC that happens to sings, she gotta be a full on vocal artist. i don’t know when i’ll come across such an artist, but when i do i will know it and i will jump on it and make it happen.

V: the mantra “Hip Hop Is Dead” has been around for a little while now, and it’s my personal opinion that it’s insulting to even suggest such a thing when there’s dudes like a Pete Marriott out there not only keeping the genre and the culture alive, but also churning out HOT tracks. so was hip hop ever truly in dire straits? was it a record-selling tactic? and what do you think the future of hip hop will look and sound like going forward?

P: let’s be honest, hip hop did go through a very bleak period where there lots of musical missteps in both the mainstream and especially in the underground. there was a very stale period where so many cats were only sampling and chopping soul records which not only got very boring and stale quickly but it was done in very bland ways that was pretty banal.

it unfortunately was a low period in hip hop music overall and people finally woke up from that slumber and now you’re seeing the return of the jazz sample fusing psychedelic rock, metal, funk, reggae and soul and it’s being layered in key rather than just chopped, and because of this the hip hop audience that got bored or annoyed with soul chopping will return and new hip hop fans will fall in love it with.

i have no crystal ball, if i did, i’d use it but what i do have is the ability to listen to the people and what they want out of the music. i don’t know if it’s the insulation of the Internet or what it is, but i find that most of these new guys behind the beats today are not listening to the people and they don’t go into the clubs and observe what the people are reacting to.

maybe i have that advantage because i’m a DJ, which is why i think it’s easier for my records to get on the radio without my having to compromise my integrity, but that comes from paying attention to the people. like the EPMD record says “give the people what they want.”

V: thanks for your time sir! i know you’re a busy man these days. just wanted to add it’s been my pleasure to watch the Marriott empire grow n grow. lookin forward to all the new music!

P: thank you very much V, i’m truly grateful for your taking interest and being apart of your mixtape series. this is a great time for music and i’m glad to be in the midst of it.

V.

C.O.A.C.M presents…5 Questions with: PETE MARRIOTT

since this is the first of many forthcoming 5 Question mini-interviews, lemme explain WHY. recently i released a mix specifically for (and titled after) this blog, and put the call out to indie/underground/unsigned/bedroom artists to send me their links so i can choose a single track and eventually have enough to make a mix. and afterwards my intent was to spotlight as many of the contributing artists as possible via 5 Question interview. so to kick off what is sure to be an enlightening series of wordy pieces: the story of Pete Marriott.

1. what’s your name, where are you from & how did you get involved with music?

i’m Pete Marriott one half of Breukelen Marriott which consists of myself and Mr. Man (Da’ Bush Babees). we have single dropping this Summer and working on an album i think is dropping next year.

i’m a veteran Record Producer and Radio Mix Show DJ originally from East Flatbush, NY. i currently reside in Seattle where i operate my studio, The Tool Shed, which is a hybrid studio where i use both analog and digital technologies to create, record, produce, mix and remix records for myself and artists i collaborate with.

my hit single “The Champ Is Here” went to number one on the charts last Summer and since then quite a bit of production and remix work came my way and i’m in my studio readying several singles i produced and remixed that are dropping on various labels this Summer.

i originally started out as a DJ at the age of 8 years old, but i accomplished two life changing achievements in my life when i was only 15 years old. the first was, i produced my very first single, the underground hip hop classic “Let’s Make Some Noise” b/w “This Is The B-Side”.

this led to my DJing for New York’s WNWK which was the very first radio station to play hip hop music anywhere in the world which back then made me NYC’s youngest on-air mix show DJ in the 1980’s and i currently DJ for Nyce-FM and Open Season Radio so i’m no stranger to this hip hop music scene.

i don’t have a publicist who writes my answers for me, so what you’re reading are my real thoughts with my real words.

2. how did your particular track in the mix come about/is there a story behind its creation?

“The Kidnapping” is actually a song that i recorded with Romance in 1988 when he was 15 years old and i just turned 18. i recorded him in my then production partner Marley’s basement to 4-track cassette using a Sure SM-57 mic that Romance had to hold in his hand while our entire crew which consisted of my old group Da’ Goodfellaz, Benz of the Drednotz, and Lord Supreme had to shut the hell up and be quiet in between takes. there was 8 dudes in the basement the day we recorded this song and you’ll hear those voices on the single.

i did the beats and Romance wrote and performed all the rhymes and we did an album worth of songs which we shopped and there was a bidding war for him which eventually turned into a major label deal that went nowhere fast. Romance got shelved. he was and still is one of the nicest MC’s to ever come out of Brooklyn that sadly the general public never had a chance to hear on a record until now.

how you came to hear the song as you know it, is two years ago my Grandmother passed away and while my Uncle was cleaning out her house he found the shoeboxes of cassettes i left with her for safekeeping. she had them hidden in a closet with my name marked on them. i moved from New York years ago and totally forgot i left the cassette masters with her and my Uncle was going to disregard them as rubbish and dump them, but he said he had a very strong feeling to call me first and when he did and told me what he found, it was a genuine “oh shit!” moment for me and i had UPS pick them up and shipped to me from Brooklyn to Seattle.

it was a good thing too, because i now have a box set worth of these 4-track and 8-track cassette masters from the 80’s and 90’s that hip hop purists are going to lose their minds over when we release these joints one after another.

what you’re actually hearing in your mix is a very rough unmixed transfer from the 4-track cassette master to FL Studio that i cleaned up a little and slapped a little echo on it. the official complete single is dropping on iTunes and Amazon July 3rd, 2012. i really can’t wait for you to hear it, i did a really great job making it into a real record!

there’s a video we did for Image-Line who are the developers of FL Studio where i demonstrate the transfer and production process of the single and you’ll see that soon enough as we get closer to the release date. we also have a music video for “The Kidnapping” in the works too and it’s gonna be dope as fuck!

i’m really excited about this single and the support we’re getting for it so far. this is a great precursor single to my new album. it’s a part of real hip hop history and people are finally going to know who Romance, Benz and Lord Supreme are. these guys are my Brothers and i love them all and they all deserve their proper places in hip hop history because they are all great MCs.

i’m really happy about this project seeing the light of day.

3. who or what inspires you to create? and how do you STAY inspired?

i hope i don’t sound clichéd, but i actually love and live real hip hop music and real hip hop culture.

i make records because i have a genuine love and passion for the music and if you’re just as passionate as i am about the music then you can talk to me on a very real level about Freddie Vs. Miles or why you prefer the Alesis 3036 over the DBX 266a or debate me in a Bleeker Bob’s Vs. Bop Street discussion and we’ll build with each other for like forever.

hip hop music is something i grew up doing my entire life from the 1970’s living in Brooklyn with my Grandmother and visiting my Dad in the Bronx. i know first hand what it is and was fortunate enough to get in both the record and radio industries at a young age.

when guys like Q-Tip, O’mas Keith, Jake One, Nottz, Gensu Dean and Ski Beats shout me out on Facebook and tell me they think my records are dope, that keeps me going. it lets me know that people who i actually respect as producers, also respect me. so it helps me appreciate the 3, 800+ people who sought me out on Facebook and liked me because they heard a record i produced or remixed even more, that’s what keeps me going.

4. your opinion on copyright and the sharing of music? (specifically tunes made by unsigned, under-the-radar and bedroom artists that are then shared by fans?).

it’s kinda weird for me to say this, but i kinda despise what internet culture has done to music culture. i don’t hate the internet, but the culture in regards to music i find kinda distasteful.

did it give musicians like myself a lane to make a name for ourselves through our music? yes, but it also encouraged a very naive audience to have a very false sense of entitlement. music fans now expect you to give them your music for free so in my mind as an indie artist i have to kinda, sorta oblige their borg-like collective groupthink mentality, but as you realize by now i’m being strategic about it today.

look what i’ve done, i gave you an unmixed snippet of a song i knew we were making into a single, but i did not give you the fully produced and arranged, completed, mixed and mastered single. although what i gave you was an exclusive that no other DJ or blogger has, which truthfully in my opinion is something that only a true music geek with good tastes can appreciate, it’s still not the real single.

it’s not the commercialized ready for radio version that is worth a music video budget or promotion campaign that the label is putting their energy and money behind, it’s just a unpolished unmixed snippet that is effective enough to pique people’s interest. so when the actual record drops, people who may have glossed over it will pay immediate attention to when they hear the real single of the song and see the music video and there will be a prolonged effect because of the familiarity of it.

in the old days we didn’t have to play that kinda head game with the music audience, but today you have to, because their attention spans are incredibly low thanks to Twitter, Instagram and other mind-reducing social platforms, so now you have to spoon feed these kids so they will be willing to absorb the heavy doses when the actual record drops.

the buzz on a indie single is no longer than four days after it drops. and indie album’s even shorter, so how do you get people to pay longer attention to good music today? the same way we pushed “The Champ Is Here” to #1.

i made a dope record that my fellow mix show DJs can get behind 100%, but we dropped a few breadcrumbs on the way via the internet by giving the fans what they felt entitled to, a free incomplete version of that record so when they heard the radio ready retail version on their favorite mix shows, they fell in love with it and requested it and it climbed to the top position on several charts.

this is what it takes today, and by my sharing this information with you, i’m not opening a can of worms, but i certainly find it disturbing because it says a great deal about the audience and that should scare every indie artist to death. because even the smart fans who are aware of how fucked up music culture is right now is locked into this ultra sad state of affairs and can’t escape from it.

this is what internet culture has done to us all and until fans buy our music again it’s going to get worse.

 

5. the best place to listen/download/buy your tunes? and any final words you’d like to say to the Internets?

i personally enjoy Spotify for streaming music i’m familiar with, if i really want to discover music i jump in the car and drive to a record store with my Numark PT-01 portable turntable and listen to a band or an artist i never heard of before or always wanted to check out.

on the other hand i financially support a lot of indie artists who use Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Topspin and Vibedeck. and quite a few artists can personally tell you themselves that i’m a big contributor to their Kickstarter campaigns. if it’s good music and i believe in you as an artist, producer or whatever, i will do what i can to help your campaign as well as put my money where my Facebook updates is.

i own legit copies of Gensu Dean’s “Lo-Fi Fingahz” CD, LP and two 7” singles as well as the legal download and i went hard for him on my Facebook Fan Page and on my radio show. i post pics of these purchases because i want to encourage people to support good music again and some people write me and tell me that they too purchased that album after seeing me go hard for him. they had no idea who he was but they knew who i was so i got them interested because i was passionate enough to get them to check for him.

if your music is that dope, i will go hard for you. i also went hard for Robert Glasper and i’m about to do the same for Darryl Reeves who is just a incredible musician! i’m telling you right now to go buy everything these guys are selling because their music is too awesome not to collect their works.

the unsigned artists on your mix should be going extra hard for each other right now. they should be reaching out to each other seeking to collaborate with each other in any form or fashion. i hear so much potential that i’m going to reach out to a few people when i have some free time. that’s my word!

@soundcloud | @youtube | @vimeo | @mixcloud | @twitter | @tumblr

and of course, check out an extended snippet of Pete‘s single “The Kidnapping” as part of CONFESSIONS OF A CURLY MIND Vol. 1. u can grab either the .zip or .rar files (as separated n tracked) or cop the single-file mix via Soundcloud below 🙂

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CONFESSIONS OF A CURLY MIND Vol. 1

a couple of months ago i put the call out (mostly via Okayplayer) for indie/bedroom artists to submit their links and/or music to a new compilation i was putting together, named after my blog as it’s intended to be exclusive to here. the idea is to expose y’all to more than the norm but shining a light in as many musical corners as possible. as a result i’ve been able to compile 24 slick tunes ranging from soulful hip hop, to beats, to spaced out dub, funk, acoustic, NEO neo soul & a track or two that i can’t really classify in the traditional sense. all up, it’s nearly 80mins of great tunes and you don’t need money to listen or enjoy the shit. all i (and i guess by extension, we) ask is you take the chance to listen and possibly discover some new favourite artists in the process 🙂

if you’d prefer a single file download check it out via Soundcloud, or grab the separated/tracked links below the tracklist.

01. kai mwaafrika – love buzz (feat. laurel hall) (3:27)
02. self – fear (3:46)
03. davu – strange days (3:09)
04. m.c. logic – maniac (m.c. logic mix) (2:24)
05. pete marriott – the kidnapping (unmixed snippet) (feat. romance) (3:07)
06. king fuvi – faster (3:40)
07. canayda – tryna get paid (rough mix) (prod. by j clyde) (3:07)
08. tha-d.com – return to d-funk (exclusive) (2:26)
09. proc – look (2:14)
10. pete simpson & monkz – introrude (2:32)
11. nij beats – star trek (sketch for arthur) (1:42)
12. 3.14 (pi) – el in tune with nature (2:32)
13. the essential drop – allesklar…kool (2:13)
14. cb010 – raise the bar (1:32)
15. just plain ant – another one (feat. joey ripps) (co-prod. by ohbliv) (4:11)
16. lyle horowitz – blue lights (midpoint remix) (feat. loud pack lucy) (2:49)
17. soulbrotha (aka sb) – exceptional (feat. shakara weston) (prod. by aeon) (3:35)
18. p. nom – no stress (4:04)
19. inspired flight – it always takes (option’s local zen remix) (3:55)
20. mar – our attempt (3:56)
21. justin deremo – bless no stress (3:04)
22. mon-tag – the other day (2:18)
23. room e – funeral theme (7:11)
24. jodeci – beautiful company (3:52)

runtime = 76:59.

:::DOWNLOAD:::
zip | rar

over the course of the next month i will also be spotlighting each individual artist that appears on the mix with a 5 question mini-interview, so you can briefly get to know your friendly neighbourhood music-lovers.

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