Another beat sponsor to the “I’M A ROVA” contest. Everyone has a story and K Loud’s is just getting started:
( K LouD BeaTZ, or K LouD TurNT UP (when I am full throttle )
Where are you from?
South Pittsburgh, Washington/Allegheny County line
How did you get started producing?
I apologize this may be long, but I was in a serious car accident when I was 15, & fractured my skull, had a brain bleed, severe concussion, & all the impact was to the right frontal lobe of my head/brain. Anyways, I seen a neuro-psychiatrist doctor as part of my recovery, & during my recovery I constantly was hearing melodies & fragments of music & sounds & being that I already had an interest in music, danced & went to Club Zoo (Pgh) before then, I took a much bigger interest in music suddenly. I told my doctor about this, & he said that the impact to my right frontal lobe in most cases would damage the brain, but in rare occasions & past studies of cognitive neuroscience, people have actually obtained genius-like ability in music because of an impact to the right frontal lobe area. It is extremely rare, but can happen & I consider the car accident a blessing in disguise. Anyways, After hearing this from my doctor & getting better health wise, I started researching music production online any free moment I had, & I ran into software called FL Studio (Fruity Loops) which I learned was a great entry level production software Daw that was also affordable (with big name Producers mostly using Analog back then, I would have never of thought FL Studio would have been the phenomenon it is today). In conclusion to the question, later that same year I was awarded money from my insurance company because of the damage from my car accident. My case was worth 1.4 Million dollars, but I only received around $200,000 because that is all the insurance I had. However, I still was blessed. I wasn’t able to get the money until I was 18, & at this time I was only 15. However, I wrote a letter in a word document with a list & pictures of the music equipment I needed to get started to the deciding judge & Attorney. I think it came up to around $4,000 & thankfully he released that money early for me to start doing music because it was part of my cognitive therapy for my brain/recovery. This was back in 01 or 02 & there was no turning back from there. & that’s how I got started.
When/what made you decide to take it seriously?
I think being that I have always been using serious & professional hardware/software I have been taking it serious from day 1. However, when I am going full throttle you will notice & I think people have so that answers the question in another sense. So really this past year & elaborating why I have been going 100% obsessing about music this past year is because of realization of how good I think I am or in more of a sense can be. Because any educated producer knows that Music Production has changed as much as doing a U-Turn in the past few years in the sense that the analog world is becoming obsolete because of the digital production world taking over. You can do so much with Digital Software than you can Analog Hardware. There are actually a lot of things I am actually doing that I feel hasn’t ever been done. This change has opened the door for this generations producers so much so THIS is why I been obsessing about music this past year. I know producers signing production deals, have signed deals & are next in line in changing the game more than it already has. I am in it to do the same, & have fun of course.
Do you have any formal training?
None, I am 100% self trained by reading, trial & error & passion. The only thing close to training I have is some help in compression, vocals & EQ and a few other things from talented Producer Mike Dugan. Other than that, I talked to Johnny Juliano a few times & one time at Guitar Center we were talking about 808’s & he explained to me how to sustain the sound of the 808 kick with the Attack & Release in FL Studio. Other than those things I been at this myself.
Claim to fame? Placements?
I actually used to be very high up & a big name on Soundclick a few years ago. I was getting up to 7,000 plays a day, few hundred downloads, I had Soundclick Stamped Tracks, 1 of my songs went #1 in the R&B Charts for about a week, I was in the “Hott Charts Movers” a lot. I was ranking top 10 in most of the instrumental categories. This was all with big names, very big Soundclick Producers, right with & even ranked higher than SSO, Mr. Kooman, Johnny Juliano, Vybe, Chris Mecca & More. Sometimes I wonder what if, because this was about 2 years ago & I was about on the same level as Chris Mecca & Mr. Kooman in rankings & I feel if I never slowed down I would be so much further today. (I have screenshots in my facebook pictures showing) I had some setbacks that slowed me down like a relationship, mistakes & personal things. However, like I said I am taking a break from Soundclick for bigger things, & if they don’t work out, I will get back on Soundclick & with my previous success I feel I can jump right back in the race with ease.
No major placements yet. I few Indie Artists through out the world. I actually never sent anything out or tried for major placements because until this past year I did this mainly for the love & I never needed money because of my settlement I talked about.
Your current production set-up:
Hardware: M Audio 88 key Midi, Blue-Bird, Audio Technica 2035, Project Mix, KRK Rokit 8’s, M-Audio Profire, Avid M-Box, Custom Computer from PC-Audio Labs.
Software: FL Studio, Sonar, Pro Tools Le, Pro Tools M Powered 8, Nexus 2, Urban Arsenal 2, Komplete 8 including Massive, Absynth, Battery 3, FM-8, Kontakt, Reaktor, too many Waves Plugins to list, Sampletank 2, Miroslav Philharmonik, Playa, Acid Pro, Final Cut, Adobe CS5 Premium(web design). & have used many other things in the past including Triton’s other mic’s & analog gear etc.
Can you explain your beat making process?
-Drums / melody / sample first?
For the most part I just go with the flow, like I said I get melodies, song & ideas in my head. So when this happens I just sit down, zone out & emulate exactly what I just imagined. Other times, I will say “ I feel like making some R&B today, or Trapp, & I just structure it together. I been drawing in the Piano Roll for 11 years now, I have never sequenced & quantized piano roll edits. For the most part I know exactly what drums are going to sound like when I draw the notes in before I even hit play.
Software vs. Hardware?
I lean more towards Software, so much more you can do with it like I said but at the same time there is still a lot of good things you can do with Hardware. Hardware Synths like the Fantom, Motif, Obviously Control Surfaces, & always a plus to have an analog Vocal Channel Strip/Pre-Amp. Ironically the Drake Take Care Album actually used a NEVE Channel Strip which is probably like 20 years old. It puts off such a rich sound though so yea Hardware is still very useful I just like the Digital World for most of my production.
Beatmaker vs Producer?
Beatmaker – Makes Beats, can even make good beats but has a tendency of always trying to make what is the most popular. Doesn’t take it as serious. I see a lot of Beatmakers making nothing but Trapp Beats. Express yourself, spread it out.
Producer – Makes music, records vocals, can use more than just one hardware or software to make music. Works with Artists in Artist Development & in the studio. Can think of concepts, write songs & take it serious. Also a big part of the music industry I think is knowing the business aspect. I see a lot of Beat-Makers that are clueless to this.
Favorite artists in pittsburgh?
I have always loved Wiz I feel he changed hip-hop in a sense with his concept, & different styles of Hip Hop & swag. However Pittsburgh is very talented & I feel it could be the new Atlanta one day.
So many more I can list but I would go on forever if I did. I respect anyone with their heart in it.
I would have to say my favorite collaboration has been with an Atlanta Producer Klean Beatz. We have known each other a few years & he is really talented & is moving up really fast. He has his own kind of sound too this is why I enjoy it we come up with cool stuff.
Right now I am actually keeping most of my music on hush, but I still have a decent local buzz going on just by putting out something here & there. I am actually making music everyday I have almost a 1000 .flp project files & 300.ptf Pro Tools Files that I am working on, 1 or 2 a day until I have what the industry calls a “perfect pitch” as a Producer/Songwriter. I am really a songwriter just as much as a producer. Everybody has always told me my sound is mainstream, commercial, radio. So I have been working on a lot of Instrumentals & Songs for when the time comes in the near future my Attorney Demo Shops my music to Publishers/Labels. I haven’t been going hard on soundclick for almost a year now because of this. I don’t want to get rid of any leases or beats cheap. I was told by my Attorney to keep everything 100% Exclusive in the sense that the only people that could use it is a major placement. Other than this, I am working on a well overdue Mix-tape for myself as an Artist called # Pittsburgh Production Prodigy. It is set to release on my birthday on 3.23.13 via HotNewHipHop.com. I will provide the link at the bottom of the interview.