Discuss in brief your background and what got you into music production exactly. What instruments do you play and what computer programs do you use to craft your beats?
I made my first beat back in 06 by necessity, I was a kid from the hood trying to spit some bars but I had no money to spare so my father gave me my brother´s computer (A Pentium from 1995…) and through trying this and that, I learned how to make a beat.
In 2008, I dropped my first album in Spain under a major label and after that I dropped four more albums with some other artists from Spain. My first production credits in the United States were in 2009 with some underground artists from the South but I started making waves in 2010 when I received my first major production with F.L.Y. (known for their hit single “Swag Surfin”).
I love to compose with real instruments and so I learnt how to play guitar, bass, piano, trumpet and a little bit of violin. I´m completely self-taught and I spent a lot of time learning how to play them but it was worth it, believe me.
How did you link with Spanish Harlem rapper Bodega BAMZ? What do you think about the whole TANBOYS movement and it’s impact on the Spanish Rap community globally?
I linked with his manager Ohla via Twitter. It was real fast, I told him I wanted to talk with him about an idea and he sent me his e-mail. I sent him my idea and all the things I needed to work and they accepted.
I’m a part of the TANBOYS family and honestly I think we are one of the hottests movements in USA right now. There is a bunch of young blood in the USA but Bodega has revived the Latino essence. The Latino community is worldwide and they all support us, on every mixtape and single, we are making the Latino community proud again.
What made you want to remix his mixtape, what you drew you to it? Can you talk about some of the songs you favor on the tape and why?
I´ve been a Bodega Bamz fan since “Love Live Moments”, this is the main reason why I wanted to work with him and remix his tape. The second reason is because I knew I had some crazy ideas for the mixtape and that I could create the real “Latin Trap”. Last but not least, he spits realness on every single track, he is not a fake rapper, and nowadays that is real hard to find: An artist who spits reality.
As you can see, I didn’t remix the whole tape because some of the songs are absolutely perfect in my opinion. The rest were good too but like I said I wanted to put Bodega’s bars on real “Latin Trap”. He started the genre, so he could bring 50% of it and I knew the formula to complete the other 50% as you can see on “My Name is Papi”, “Thrilla” or “Still Trappin”.
How did you go about crafting and transforming his music from it’s original production structure to the Merengue and Salsa compositions it has on the remix mixtape?
I´m a composer before I am beat-maker so I know how to “play” with different atmospheres to create one, and this is what I did with “My Name is Papi” for example. The main beat is based on chillwave, so I put a down south percussion loop with filtered sounds and a faster tempo than usual to blend it with the Mambo on the hook. Sounds crazy but I play Mambo, Bachata and many other genres every day so I know the tempos, tones, and harmonies. It made everything easier.
What was BAMZ’ reaction to the finished product (my favorite track is the remix you did of “THRILLA”)? Would you call this your most complete project to date?
Bamz fucks with it, Ohla fucks with it, the whole TANBOYS family fucks with it, and it is the reason why I´m an official TANBOYS member, I think that answers both questions perfectly.
How does your European background and setting influence or mold your sound?
Europe doesn’t influence my music at all because the most important genre in Europe is pop/dance music. I respect that and I usually compose pop/dance music but it isn’t my source of inspiration.
What are some artists/producers that influenced your sound, past and present?
Mike Dean is one of my main influencers because all the stuff he did for Geto Boys, Scarface, UGK and Do or Die was crazy and of course his latest work for G.O.O.D. Music…he is one of my biggest influences. I also fuck with Preemo (DJ Premier), DJ Toomp, Alchemist, Kanye, Arsonist (Heatmakers), Legendary Traxter, Juicy J and Timbaland.
How in-tune are you to the other groups (Flatbush Zombies, A$AP Mob, ProEra) coming out of the New New York Renaissance?
I fuck with all of them, Flatbush Zombies bring a new wave of rap music, they go crazy for every show.
A$AP Mob is running the world right now, they got the game on lock, they got Rocky flowing on chillwave, Ferg flowing on trap music, Nast with the crazy flow switch drawn from the 90´s Down South music. Plus they are always on their fashion shit and that’s a plus especially in places like France and the U.K.
Pro Era was necessary too, a lot of young cats don’t know how to appreciate good rap music, they were born in the era where rap music wasn’t about the content. Some guys didn’t know anything about the 90´s sound and Pro Era is like the rebirth of that sound.
You’ve also produced for another up-and-coming rapper, Doe B of Grand Hustle who’s blowing up with his hit single, “Let Me Find Out”. What’s the story behind this interaction?
One of my first production credits in US was with an underground artist from Alabama named Lil’ Mook, we’ve been working year after year on indie mixtapes and stuff like that. This year he connected with a bunch of hot artists in the South like Rich Homie Quan and Yung Ralph and he wanted me on his next single feat Doe B.
At the same time, I’ve know Doe B´s executive producer Bao Pham for about 2 years now, he was the engineer who mixed and mastered Strictly 4 My Papiz Remix´s.
What can we expect from you in the future, in terms of producing for other rappers? Do you have any other artistic aspirations?
More and more good music, I’m all about that, I got an instrumental EP ready to drop next month called MXRITVRI (Morituri—Latin for “those who are about to die”) which is a personal project with experimental, chillwave and French electro pieces. At the same time I’m still working with Bodega and the whole TANBOYS family, we are working on some new music so stay tuned.
I love to draw, if I´m on hip hop culture it’s because of graffiti, I also started drawing realism, pop art and I’ve learned graphic design too.
I’m also into fashion design, I dropped my first streetwear feature a few months ago with a local brand called Frozone (Crewneck x Snapback) and I’m actually working with Sinatra Apparel from a little island next to Spain on a special edition for MXRITVRI.