Episodes

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A true "music production" podcast. We talk about everything and anything related
to the music producer. New gear reviews, business advice, beat critiques & 
industry special guests every week! Founded by Grammy Award nominated 
multi-platinum music producer !llmind.

PREVIOUS EPISODES:



Episode 50! Wowzers! In this special episode, we interview a gentleman you all should get to know and be familiar with. He is the music supervisor for the hit HBO series "Insecure" (shouts to Issa she's a genius!) and is well connected in the TV & FILM music licensing industry. We get tons of questions regarding the placement of your music and beats on TV shows, Movies, etc. The ultimate question is always "how do I get my music on these shows!?". Well, our friend Kier is here to break the whole sh*t down for you with jewels and information on how to go about doing it the RIGHT way. If you're serious about your music production, it would be foolish to not listen to this episode.



You asked for it. We delivered! This week we decided to do an entire episode of only BLAP OR CRAP! If you've been living under a rock, you're probably wondering.. What is "Blap Or Crap"?? Well, it's a segment in our podcast where we listen to random beat submissions found on www.beatthread.com and if we like the beat, we give it a "BLAP" rating. If we don't like it, we give it a "CRAP" rating. We also give a bit of constructive criticism (mostly destructive involving fart noises and toilet flushes lol). Enjoy this BLAP-filled episode, and if you're interested in submitting your beat to our "Blap Or Crap" segment (which we do at the end of every episode by the way) UPLOAD your beats on www.beatthread.com (sign up is FREE) and hashtag #blaporcrap when you upload. It's that simple.



We back baby! In this episode we have one of the filthiest up and coming superstar producers on the rise. He's from Toronto (surprise surprise.. seems like all of the awesome producers are coming from there!) With recent placements on Drake's "More Life", Uzi's "Luv Is Rage 2", Bryson Tiller's "True To Self" & more, 2017 was no doubt his break-out year. At 20 years young, what are the next steps as a music producer after just reaching these new milestones? We dig a little deeper into what life is like for Francis now, what it was like during the grind, his years of building a friendship with the amazing WondaGurl beats and how that relationship changed both of their lives and the importance of being open to collaboration.



From being Playboy's "Artist In Residence" (which is a HUUGE deal), to releasing his brand new full PUMA collaboration (shoes + shirts/etc all FIRE), to art pieces cosigned and purchased by Swizz Beats, Diddy, Rihanna & more, Naturel is one of the most influential "new school" visual artists of today. He calls himself a creative. And boy, he is creative as f*ck! He spent years and years discovering himself, grinding to the point where he decided to post some stuff on Instagram. That led to a multitude of milestones and cosigns. It's interesting to discover how similar the ART hustle is to the MUSIC PRODUCTION hustle. What an inspiring story.



I hate labels. I just want to start by making that clear. You knew we'd get here eventually. There's a lot of debate regarding this topic. What I've discovered is that there are many factors that go into play when comparing the two. Do these labels even exist? Maybe they don't. Maybe they're one in the same. Or not. We called a few fans to get their perspective. What makes you a beat maker? What makes you a music producer? Regardless, this discussion had to happen, and it's fascinating.



After !llmind's chat with Gary Vee (the motivational god of all gods!) we wanted to further examine the theory behind what "fun" actually is, and why it's such a crucial component to reaching success and happiness. You'd be surprised at how simple and powerful having fun actually is, especially in the music industry. As music creators, it's easy to get frustrated by the grind. We tend to focus on the negative things, and we start to second guess what we're doing. In this episode, we examine what "fun" actually is and how to achieve it at the highest level.



Longevity is the key. So the question is, how do you attain that in the music industry? Well, our guest Jake One might have a few ideas. 15+ years in the game. Platinum records. Platinum singles. Grammy nominations. All while staying completely true and consistent with his sound. This is the same guy that produced "Three Kings" (Jay Z, Rick Ross, Dr Dre) "Rock Co.Kane Flow" (De La Soul) "Furthest Thing" (Drake). I mean, we can go on forever. The catalog is crazy, but the stories behind them are even crazier. Another one for the books.


Fresh off of producing a handful of records on artist Amine' ("Caroline" is my sh*t!) artists debut album, the very talented Jahaan Sweet joins us in episode 43 (Wow! We're climbing up on these episodes!). With an extensive musical background, Jahaan was really able to find his "sweet spot" (pause AND no pun intended) in the music industry. He took a chance with Kehlani before people cared about Kehlani and was able to grow with her. This led to many more opportunities and collaborations, which in turn led to placements. The interesting thing is, Jahaan didn't start his career "selling beats to indy artists" necessarily. He stood by his sound from day one, and only worked with people he was inspired by. He took the "invest in the artist for free" approach, and it seems to have paid off. Definitely an interesting perspective to analyze. Another must listen.



What do "Hate It Or Love It" by 50 Cent & "New York" by Ja Rule have in common? Not only were they timeless records, but they were 2 of MANY smash records produced by the legendary production duo COOL & DRE. We had the pleasure of talking to Cool about how he met Dre, his start as an R&B singer/songwriter and the various steps he and Dre took to take their careers to the next level. Some legendary stories about how they met Fat Joe and how they are able to stay relevant almost a decade later. Super inspiring.



What happens when you go from selling beats on youtube to indy rappers, to producing the #1 record in the country? Life changes instantly. In this episode we spoke to Menace, who one day sold a beat to "just another customer" named Desiigner. The beat he sold ended up being "Panda". The interesting thing about this placement is HOW it happened, and the fact that something like this could happen to anyone at any time as long as the work is put in. We also spoke about producers pulling up to the studio & the differences between emailing beats and actually showing up in person. Oh, and of course our "Blap Or Crap" segment was pretty epic!



In this episode, we discuss one of the most exciting and new music producer platforms to hit the market. It's called BEATTHREAD. What is it you ask? It's basically a website where you can upload your beats to receive feedback/beat critiques from other users. In turn, you can also listen to other users' beats and give them your own critiques. There is also a rating system (thumbs up, thumbs down and "meh"). The kicker to all of this is that the highest rated tracks float to the top of the charts. It's kind of like the Reddit for music production. We spoke to the co-founders Danny and Nathan (alongside Atlas & !llmind as co-founders as well) about how and why this platform will become revolutionary for the music production community + so much more. We even spoke to a few current users of the platform to tell us what they think and how it's been helping them! Listen to it now, and check out www.beatthread.com after you listen.



It went down in the DM! We spoke to NES about how one DM on Instagram instantly changed his life and introduced the opportunity to jump on the phone with Bryson Tiller. This led to him producing a large majority of songs (including one with !llmind!) on Bryson Tiller's brand new album "True To Self". His journey is only beginning. We also spoke about why producers don't get recognition, and some things they can do to get more of it. Another one for the books, baby!



"The coach last longer than the player." That's the first quote you see when you look at Steve Lobel's profile. From carrying crates for the late great Jam Master Jay, learning from Russell Simmons, to breaking legendary artists and managing Scott Storch, Steve has seen and done it all behind the scenes. We spoke about his longevity, what it takes to be a real executive, and some valuable life lessons he's learned and continues to learn. A true "one-of-one" in the industry. This one is probably one of our most valuable shows to date. You may need to listen to this one more than once!




This episode is all about "taking initiative for yourself". Sometimes we take for granted the most obvious. One of those things is looking in the mirror and being honest with yourself, your needs and what you truly want to accomplish in life. The idea of getting out there and trying different things is proven to be very powerful. We dig deep into the philosophy of "exploring your options" and being willing to fail at certain things and succeed at others. This was a great conversation. Listen in and hopefully the conversation inspires you!




In this episode, we finally discuss the on-going topic of the various pros and cons of the "type-beat" producer approach. Are there actually advantages in promoting your beats online using titles like "Drake type beat", "Kanye type beat", "Metro Boomin type beat" etc? Maybe. Does this approach impact your brand negatively? Maybe. We also discuss the top 6 reasons why things seem to go viral. Whether in the music industry, or any other business, there are some common denominators as to how and why information spreads. Many jewels in this episode you don't want to miss!



What happens when you score the biggest placement of your life with one of the biggest artists in mainstream music? Everything changes in an instant. We're talking about Cameron Chef Pasquale, producing "KMT" for Drake on the "More Life" project. Man, what a time to be alive! We spoke about his journey leading up to this placement, and what he had to do beforehand to get him there. He basically confirms all of the things we talk about on this podcast; persistence, passion, preparation & a strong network. What a bright future. Definitely don't sleep on this episode.

EPISODE 34 With Ryan Leslie



Ryan Leslie. The man who revolutionized the "beat making" videos and created viral sensation on youtube during its early days. The man who broke the Myspace code and revolutionized the way we look at marketing and streaming music by breaking Cassie's career. The man who graduated Harvard at an early age, and went on to produce hundreds of platinum records. His mission to connect the world is inspiring and fascinating. This man had so many jewels on this episode, I don't even know where to begin. Just listen to it and get ready to feel cleansed.



Aretha Franklin, Led Zeppepin, Timbaland, The Rolling Stones, Aaliyah, Missy Elliot, Jay X, Snoop Dogg, Justin Timberlake, Kanye West, Sean Paul, All Green. What do these names have in common? Jimmy Douglass. 30+ years as an engineer/producer/musician/problem solver. We spoke about that one time Timbaland first brought Missy to the studio in Rochester, NY, his experience working for Atlantic records in the early days, and where the game is headed. Oh, and did we mention that he knows how to use basically every single DAW out there? More JEWELS for ya head top. So much knowledge in this episode.



The Heatmakerz are undoubtedly one of the most legendary music production crews in hip-hop. From the early Camron days, to the Dipset movement and sound in the early 2000's, these guys were running the sound of the streets for almost a decade. We spoke to founding member RSONIST about the beginning stages of his career, how he is able to survive for so many years in this climate, and some really helpful pointers for up and coming producers.



Another episode chock-full of JEWELS and information. How do you build value for yourself? Well, there are multiple things you can do. We spoke about the concept of starting to build value and stock for your brand, why that's important, and how that can impact your interactions when meeting various people in the industry. We talk about networking all the time, but what are some key techniques you can execute to help build a stronger network? All of these questions are answered during EPISODE 31, along with a nice handful of other topics of discussion relating to "value" and "brand". I love this episode. Oh, and we called random people on the phone and answered their questions (via !llmind's Instagram Live account). That was super fun. Go listen now!



Michael Jackson, Usher, Mariah Carey, Jermaine Dupree, Teddy Riley. What do these names have in common? This man right here; Bryan Michael Cox. Not only has he worked with some of the greatest in music to ever live, but he is the first music producer to have appeared on the most TOP BILLBOARD hits consistently for years. We spoke about that time he was in the studio with Usher, and Michael Jackson literally called the studio to "check up on what they were doing". We had an amazing conversation about MUSIC PUBLISHING, and the various pros and cons of signing one (amongst many other topics of discussion). What an honor to have such an amazing talent bless us for Episode 30. You're doing yourself a disservice by not listening to this one! Oh, and the conversation was SO epic, we didn't even have time for "Blap or Crap"! Sheesh!



With a discography of songs produced ranging from Beyonce & The Weeknd to Kodak Black and French Montana, Ben Billions is a true force to be reckoned with in the music production community. Starting as an engineer for DJ Khalid, Ben was able to forge important relationships with industry players and megastars to get to where he is today. The scary part is that he's only getting started! From crashing on couches for years on end, to buying a house & supporting his family, we explore his incredible journey and how he managed to solidify his spot in today's over saturated culture. What an inspiration.



In this episode the Blapchat crew breaks down a few key differences between the people who succeed and those who stay stagnant. The concepts of learning to network with people who you want to work with and how to keep those relationships alive. The music industry is a "people" industry. How and when we interact with them is vital to success. There's some major cheat codes here!



Imagine a scenario where you're pursuing a career in music production for years, hit a wall, and then coincidently move into an apartment downstairs from one of Shaggy's (yes, THE Shaggy) dancers. Then you meet Shaggy (at the height of his career) and your life changes. That's exactly what happened to Ill Wayno. This particular episode is inspiring because what Ill Wayno has been able to do with his career since then is pretty remarkable. This is one of my favorite episodes to date.


Another amazing producer from Toronto, Canada. Sevn Thomas has one hell of a story, from his early days as an actual artist signed to a major label, to re-kindling his relationship with Boi-1da at a beat battle showdown with WondaGurl. He connected with the right people and the timing couldn't be more perfect. From "Pop Style" for Drake to co-production on "Real Friends" for Kanye, then "Work" for Rihanna, Sevn's life changed forever. Another must listen with plenty of producer jewels!



After a complete hard drive crash and losing all of his beats, Syksense decided to go harder, and boy did it pay off. After quitting his dead end job, he met Boi-1da at a beat battle in Nashville and everything changed. From Bryson Tiller, to "Know Yourself" for Drake, and most recently being heavily involved with Khalid (the youngest new star signed to RCA) we spoke about how his success strengthened his drive. What an inspiring conversation.



One thing we all strive for as music producers and creators is to become successful doing what we love. That's a fact. To connect with likeminded people, live life in abundance and inspire people through the music we create is a dream we are all after. One factor we so often neglect during our journey is health. I'm talking about mental, physical and biological wellness. The food we eat directly affects our ability to create music and live life. So why do we torture ourselves by eating fast food and sodas high in sugar, all while getting no sleep. We think we need to "grind hard", yet we are torturing ourselves in the process, which ends up being counter-productive. In this episode we spoke to a professional about the truths regarding the matter. She's a Registered Dietition & Health Coach, running her own company called "All Great Nutrition" (she is also !llmind's fiance' *blush*). Her name is Tamar Samuels. We spoke about why the food we eat directly affects our ability to be creative and productive, and discussed simple solutions and lifestyle changes to help be our best selves. I guarantee you'll feel energized after listening to this episode. Enjoy and make sure you check out her company www.allgreatnutrition.com.



Here's a crazy fun fact. If hurricane Katrina never happened, Fat Joe & Remy Ma's "All The Way Up" never would have existed. That's pretty crazy. We spoke to the producer of the song who goes by the name of Edsclusive, who scored the biggest placement of his career after grinding for years and overcoming hardships. His move to Miami, linking with DJ Khaled and Cool & Dre, and building his network were all contributions to his starting point in the game. His come up is very inspiring and we analyzed what he had to do to get there. This is another must-listen. Oh, and there's a hilarious moment during Blap Or Crap where !llmind almost started crying.


What happens when you decide to hit up a random open mic event, not knowing you'll meet the person who will change your life forever? That's precisely what happened to 6ix when he met Logic. The 2 formed a sound together and 6ix eventually helped catipult Logic to success. From going to school for medicine, to taking a leap of faith by moving to Los Angeles to pursue music, we get behind the story of this amazing producer. Lots of jewels dropped as usual. It's lit!


The mighty Apollo Brown joined us for our 21st episode! First of all, this guy is an ANIMAL on the beats! Starting out in the "beat battle" circuit, to helping build independent powerhouse label Mello Music Group, to keeping his sound true to soul chopping and hard a$$ drums and taking that sound overseas where he's consistently selling out shows. He recently dropped an album with the homie Skyzoo and it's amazing. The 1st 10 years of his grind was a "confidence builder" and helped build his sound. What an insightful episode.


We had an amazing conversation with the Vice President of the legendary 808 Mafia production crew. He goes by the name of Fuse. What a story! From his early beginnings coming up with Wacka, to meeting Southside and TM88 to form a production crew. He produced Big Sean's new single "Moves" and we spoke about how that placement came about (amongst many other things!). Very insightful interview with some really amazing advice for up-coming music producers (when do we not!?). Enjoy!


Another show for the books. Man, so much to say about this amazing musician/producer Allen Ritter. You may have heard a few of the smash records he helped produce, like Rihanna "Work, Drake "Controlla", Kanye West "All Day" (do we really need to keep going?). We spoke about his early beginnings, the leap of faith he took moving to NJ to link with Vinylz (another monster producer) and how they started to create history together. His early up bringing and influence from his father is inspiring. He's dropped jewels on what aspiring music producers should do to get their career going, and so much more. Enjoy!

In our 1st episode of 2017, we kick things off RIGHT with very special new additions to the show! Perfection is her production name, and she is an audio engineer & music producer. She also currently manages one of the premier music studios in NYC, Engine Room. She's met and collaborated with many people in the industry, and her perspective is one we should all look forward to. Glam is a music producer, rapper & singer. She hails from the BAY area, but currently resides in NYC. She's actually one of my favorite artists. And of course you already know my guy Atlas the plug. In this episode we talk about !llmind losing his virginity, smoking pot with your parents, staying away from "struggle energy" when networking with people, Glam's mom being a legendary rapper from the Bay and how that molded her into becoming the amazing artist that she is. Another insightful show! Oh, and of course our "Blap or Crap" segment was LIT. Enjoy!

The podcast pioneer gawds Reggie Osse & A-King of the COMBAT JACK SHOW blessed us with an amazing and insightful episode! We spoke about Reggie's history in the music industry, specifically his opinions on producer publishing deals back in the 90's compared to now, the birth of the "podcast" movement, his mission moving forward & so much more. Oh, and they stayed for BLAP OR CRAP. Who gets to hear Combat Jack give beat critiques tho!? Only here on BlapChat, baby!

This week, Kosine of the incredible production team "Da Internz" called in to chat with us about a slew of things! We ran through how certain hit records came about, like Nicki Minaj's "Anaconda", and the story of how Big Sean had an idea for a song, and told them he wanted to create a beat around a hook saying "A$$ A$$ A$$ A$$" on repeat (true story!). We also touch on the amazing things Kosine is doing for our community, including his Marcos Palacios foundation, giving back to his hometown Chicago roots & so much more. 

Another one for the books here on BlapChat! The homie Kerry "Krucial Keys" come through and dropped some serious gems. He told the story of how he met Alicia Keys at a Union Square, NY cypher event in the 90's, starting on A-Dat machines, the importance of giving back to the community and how he is able to stay relevant in today's over saturated market. Easily one of my favorite shows. Enjoy!


What an episode. The homie Cardiak Flatline came through and dropped MEGA JEWELS. We spoke about his experience with being consistent in getting placements with Drake, J Cole, his first big record START IT UP (Kanye, Lloyd Banks, Swizz, Ryan Leslie) that literally "started" his career up, his beat battle beginnings, and how nervous he got when Dr. Dre made him change a snare drum a million times and just couldn't get it right. Such an epic show. Enjoy!


In this episode, we discussed some concepts on networking with people in the industry, but more importantly why CONFIDENCE is so important. In any given situation, confidence will help you get what you want. We had some book recommendations & an in depth discussion, quoting some pretty remarkable people who embody confidence energy. Some really great beats during "blap or crap" as well (which was much needed!). Enjoy!

Another one for the books! We spoke to Frequency about what his experience was like producing "Monster" for Eminem & Rihanna, how that changed his life and what he had to do to get there. We dive into his underground hip hop roots, where he started (like the old production forums back in the day that !llmind started on as well) and why he transitioned from underground hip hop to top 40 pop production. Very inspiring stuff here. Run P kills his music set as always!

What an awesome episode! A lot of inspirational conversation here, speaking on "genius moments" while creating music, dealing with self doubt and overall concepts on how to get over the emotional stresses that come with being an aspiring producer or artist. Stoni makers her return and completely SLAYS. We also introduce a brand new character. Her name is "Lauren" and she is a spiritual being. We'll just leave it at that LOL. Enjoy!

Another one for the books! In this episode, we spoke to the amazing Supa Dups (producer for Drake "Controlla", Rihanna, Beenie Man & so many more) on his come up in Miami, staying humble, how he balances work and family life, his rise to making a name for himself to become a pioneer in his own right and so much more. His background is really interesting and inspiring. So many jewels in this episode as usual. Tune in!

Man, this was one of my favorite episodes! So many jewels from the homies in this one. From Focus' experience at Aftermath and working with some of the best, to WLPWR's humbleness & super diverse catalog. This was also one of the funniest episodes to date! Tune in for some really awesome music production tips, like balancing time with family, a day job, and much more.

In this exciting episode, we had the incredible Charlie Heat of GOOD Music. From touring with Madonna, to creating bangers with Kanye and DJ Carnage, we spoke about his beginnings and how he managed to reach this point in his career. So much great info!

One of our best shows yet, we spoke to Cardo Got Wings about his grind, what it was like coming up in Minnesota, why he DM'ed Drake and ended up hopping on a phone call with him to get a placement on "Views" and so much more. The information here is priceless.

This week's special guest was none other than Jonathan Master. With 15+ years in the music industry as an A&R (and !llmind's manager), the wealth of knowledge he possesses is second to none. We spoke about shopping beats, what it takes to break into the industry and some great insight on creating a financially stable/long term situation for yourself. Really awesome show. Lots of info. Enjoy!

This week we spoke about some new plug-ins and some new/revolutionary live DJ hardware, making "cute-a$$" beats, and a pleasant surprise during our beat critique. !llmind also played his entire new "secret" hardcore hip-hop album with Chicago spitter Verbal Kent during our music break. Lots of information in this episode. Tune in!

!llmind, Stoni, Atlas, DJ Prince & DJ RunP talk about music production and a bunch of other cool things. RunP plays funky tunes you never heard before. We've got special guest: Grammy Award Winning platinum music producer Symbolyc One (Producer of Kanye's "Power", Jay Z, Beyonce, Eminem & more, signed to G.O.O.D. Music's 'Very Good Beats' entity). We talked about the steps he took to get certain placements, how to balance work and personal life, and so much more. This was legendary!

This week we had "America's Favorite Production Duo" Buda And Grandz Music came through to chop it up with us about mad things. These guys are becoming an NYC mainstay, having produced tracks for The Lox, 50 Cent, Dave East, Wyclef and more. We spoke about their rise to how they've gotten to this point in their career, and what it takes to stand out from the rest.

!llmind, Stoni, Atlas, DJ Prince & DJ RunP talk music production, critique beats, play exclusive jams & more! We also have special guest Rook of the legendary J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League (Grammy winning production team behind Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Nas and many more) chatting about their brand new Kontakt Instrument "Sub Zero" & other amazing things they have in the works!

!llmind, Stoni, Atlas, DJ Prince & DJ RunP introduce the first show chatting about what it takes to become a successful music producer, why DJ RunP is so "swole" now and critiquing a beat with a 45 second intro that sounds like we landed on planet Mars. All while sipping a bit of Jameson on the rocks at 11:00 AM.