Tonight is about production. The lady who produced me, celebrates her birthday today. Without her, I wouldn't be here. I don't think it is coincidence that tonight's selection has no emcee, solely a producer. Residing in Arizona by way of South Africa. Yes, that makes him African-American, literally speaking. Our homie, A1 stepped outside the box with this one.
He succeeded where I failed miserably when I tried my hand at beats. He took alternate conclusions beyond expectation. The ability to get so many variations out of a single sound is priceless. So, he sampled In The Rain, by The Dramatics and got four different versions. I can't say that I've seen this done on a public scale. The beauty of the underground, artists are recognized for creativity.
The song itself is a very popular classic. My family used to play it a lot when I was a kid. It has even been used by other producers. A1 still manages to manipulate the sounds further. Notice multiple tempo, timing plus time lengths, as well as loops, and break points. Hip Hop heads will be impressed by the efforts without drums. Hard to choose a favorite, I would most likely rhyme on the second track, though.
This four pack of Flips is relaxing. The kind of week some of have been having, we need the relief. He even joins the crew for the picture in his variant cover art. Slide to Bandcamp and get your copy. Follow and share the work of this Black Hand Music Group artist. Pardon me fam, this post was for last night. There was a site issue. Thankfully, everything is back up and running. Also grateful for your loyalty. Jah bless all of you!
We got another special for our fans tonight. It's been a while since RAN had an interview. We're due for one and we got it. A veteran in the game with over 15 years on his fingertips. Grinding in Los Angeles, CA was not easy, though WESTLYFE has worked with greats from California.
RAN: WESTLYFE, I know you have a new beat tape in stores and we will cover that. Before we go there, I want the audience to know some of the heavyweights you have worked with.
WESTLYFE: I've worked with crooked I, Layzie Bone, Brotha Lynch Hung, Glasses Malone, MC Eiht... and many more.
RAN:That's deep track record. All names that I respect, our fans do too. I remember Caps Get Peeled by Eiht Hype, Creepin On A Come Up Layzie Bone to L Burna days. Brotha Lynch Hung is Hip Hop royalty. And you got Glasses Malone one of the early break through underground cats before the bubble. Not every day a producer could easily meet, let alone work with such artists.
WESTLYFE: I also worked with BG Knocc Out, Bad Azz, Big Trey Deee, and Kid Frost.
RAN: This is dope, I grew up listening to these cats. I never got into East vs West. I knew it was bait by oppressors. So, I probably heard songs you produced at some point. Who would you say is most memorable, and something they did you never expected?
WESTLYFE: Man 2Pac was most memorable artist... and going to Death Row was least expected.
RAN: He left a lasting impression on this world. You're a living legend, yourself. Your production sound is healthy brother. It's all quality, and you engulf that low rider music. Outside the music, what influences your beats?
WESTLYFE: My fam, my wife, and kids. My daughter is really into music, so I like to take her and show her the right way. I had nobody to give me direction in the music game.
RAN: I love to hear that. I have a little son, he already likes variety. It's cool to see a toddler going in to Boom Bap. I try to lead him right, also. Is your daughter you mentioned the oldest?
WESTLYFE: She's the youngest and she tries to rap.
RAN: Learning already, give her a discount on some beats. About your new album, I could hear some bangers on those tracks! Now, musically who influenced you?
WESTLYFE: Of Course Dr Dre... Lol, but other than him, DJ Quik, Sir Jin, DJ Pooh, Crazy Toons, Ant Banks, Johnny J...
RAN: Wow bro, you brought me back. My cousin had joints from Ant Banks. Quik and Pooh are more known to the mainstream, but Ant Banks is another kind of gem. I'm glad when names like these get brought up. I hear you also worked with Spice 1, Yukmouth, and Kurupt. This list is insane!
WESTLYFE: I got traxx with them... but I didn't mention, because I don't think they got released.
RAN: Well, we gotta have an inclusive Rhyme All Night listen session, soon. What do you like to use when your creating?
WESTLYFE: I use Propellerheads Reason software for beat making.
RAN: We had Reason in our studio, before. Quality program to work with. I think Reason is kinda young. What did you use before?
WESTLYFE: Akai MPC 2000, Triton keyboard, and Roland vs Multi-track. Then I got Reason 2.5 and still use it till this day. I'm On version 10 now.
RAN: How does new products compare to what you used before?
WESTLYFE: Man, before no computer. Keyboard and drum machines had tiny a__ screens. Recording on real or dots, or multi-tracks when they first came out was a hassle. Now with computers and software you can connect to a 60 inch screen. Then, cut, paste, slice, copy, and edit everything. It's just really easy now.
RAN: Yo, people really used to work off them tiny screens haha. Big difference now. You've seen a lot.How do you think social media affects the music? If you put the new tape out back in the day, what would be the difference?
WESTLYFE: I did put a beat tape out back in the day, and I put it on CD, because there was no social media in the early 2000's. I left the beat tape CD at certain Studios, and with certain artists, that's how I hooked up with some industry artists. And now it's all social media uploaded to a site and it's on.
RAN: Right, the CD game was serious. Today, we see it coming back with physicals being bought everyday. You left that CD with right people, for sure. Glad you said that. Myself and readers would like to know how you made those links?
WESTLYFE: My boy Young Trav hooked me up with a lot of the West Coast OG's. Just being in the studio, and making beats for them was a major learning experience. I grew up listening to a majority of them, and working with them has been a humbling experience.
RAN: Indeed, I know life ain't been easy, but dreams came true for you. You got Bay Area elements in your tunes, Mac Dre would be proud. Any shout outs or artists you want to work with?
WESTLYFE: S/O to my wife for backing me up all these years... this music lifestyle can put a toll on a relationship. I would love to work with Ice Cube, Dr Dre, and the one artist I would want to work with over anybody would be Scarface.
RAN: Peace to the Queen holding your corner down. That's a blessing.Peace to Young Trav, too for being a real friend. I honestly don't see a reason why those artists wouldn't work with you. I also don't feel Cube and Face are brought up enough in best writer, best rapper convos. To be continued, I guess. I do want the fans to go download your new beat tape, V1. Thanks for choppin game with us. Blessings for Yeshua!
You know I'm excited about this new pack of Piff! This one is a treat for the eyes, as well. From the hit album, True Stories, we get to see Jamal Gasol in action. He chose a pivotal song to release as a video, wise selection. The unforgettable background from Illah Dutch. Treatment is done by NBU TV. I feel the web series approach taken by the team.
With that said, you will want to know what happens in the mini story. Jamal put his life between the margins. All lines you could feel, many cases are direct situations. He treats his videographers like his producers. Gasol mixes up the flavor getting different results. The dark, grim streets where the villains dwell.
Peep some shots from the back blocks. Viewers catch a short glimpse of the activity in the Dirty Waters. The symphonic vibe with minor vocals laying in the track create a serenade. On target for story telling. You know you're doing right when Paka adds your video. That's right, more than one major source to play it.
Get your infused popcorn and have one rolled up on stand by, it's a movie. I can't thank the supporters enough. Keep sharing the content. Blessings from the Most High!
I hope all is well with my peoples. If not, we will cheer you up with music. The joint I have for you sounds like a movie. That's how dramatic the track is. Of course, one of you will tell me the sample is from a film. We have a familiar face, as well as a new one. Creator of this monster is Robert Dinero. He introduces us to Postman L.
Hailing from Cape Town, South Africa, the emcee has a lot to say. Everything is sharp about this tune. From title, track, bars, even the artist's voice is edgy. Though, Postman is from the eastern world, his Hip Hop influence is of the East Coast (USA). This is bars and reality, show and prove. If you see the the translator avatar on our page, you'll see we're all about international links.
True teamwork on this tune. A very open instrumental, uncluttered for the emcee to be recognized, as well. The conscience of faith, and pen referral draw me in. The boom bap drums leave you with a soar neck. Let somebody see your purchase n the live feed at Bandcamp! Peace to all, the love has been real. Blessings from the Most High!
Got some new work for you! Ever been to Kinston, North Carolina? Well, it's time to go take another trip. That also means new artist, listen to Big V. He's a rugged, grassroots head of the culture. Here is an emcee that gets it. Content, personality, bars, plus different things being done on each song. Compliments to that has to be Shawn Finesse. Handcrafted a film-style score with emotional samples.
The first tune, Happy is self explanatory. An accomplishment chant from an artist overcoming adversity. Someone comfortable in his own skin. I like the flow of Nathan, a joint about independence. Often people will complain or critique what you're doing. They never are the ones outside with you. They have no intention of helping you. That is a song for those people.
Making this even more of a complete body of work, Color Blind is a true love song. Or should I say, real love? V verbally introduces you to his number one lady. All is calm before the Rain. A tune of joyous expressions concluded by sensitive childhood connection. Similar to MJ not making varsity, Big mentions a previous upset with his craft in Achievements.
The EP goes out 90's style, vicious bars rail the funky track. A one verse had tapper, F Ya Playlist. The album title also stands as the artist's complete name. I dig the spiritual vibe carried throughout this piece. Readers should get their hands on it at your favorite platform. Thank you for constantly supporting. Jah bless!