In The Beginning
I was playing musical instruments and working production before I started Deejaying. Most hip-hop producers were Djs first. I started playing musical instruments in 5 grade. But, I stopped after two years to pursue typing (not my choice). In my teenage years, I started searching for music for my rap lyrics. Unforunately, I didn’t know any local music producers. So, I went to record stores.
My early production process was simple: I would raid the record store for maxi-singles and instrumental CDs. Then, I would write songs to the instrumentals and perform them at talent shows. I acquired a large CD collection.
My production style started to evolve in Washington state. While working on songs with my rap group, The Essence Of, I met Sgt. Johnson and he began our first sound engineer. I would ask questions during recording breaks about recording. He noticed my curiosity about production. So, one day, he surprised me with a gift: an Alesis HR 16 drum machine and a guitar amplifier. I was amazed. I took it home and started playing with it. My partner, Malcolm, saw this as a great opportunity for me to learn about music production for our group.
So I started shopping at music store and looked for recommended hip-hop hardware. It was expensive. An AS-10 were $1200, a MPC 2000 were $1000, etc. So, I went a different route: software.
The Software Route
My first music programs were Cakewalk and Mixman. I purchased a desktop computer with a Soundblaster Soundcard and a Casio keyboard. I was determined to learn. So, I began to purchase music magazines and books. I figured how to connect midi cables to my Casio keyboard, drum machine, and computer. Then I started to make a decent beats in a few months. Plus, I started to teach myself keyboard playing, programming, recording and remixing by using music magazines and books.
JAY of B&R Production
My rap group got a new official music producer, Jay of B&R production. he produce most of the songs on my first group album: The Essence of EP. I watched and studied his method. His funky music style amazed me. One day, I brought over my drum machine to show him. He was impressed and began playing it. He created a funky beat on my drum machine that blew me away in 10 minutes. I still have that beat on it.
To advance on my musical studies, I saw a great opportunity to integrate my large CD collection with my music production by remixing songs. Remixing became a big thing since, the increase popularity of dance music. So, the use of accapellas off CD maxi -singles was wonderful. I would also use remix programs (Acid, Mixman, and Ableton) to compile musical loops with music artist’s recordings. Plus, I graduated with sound engineering certificate from American Music. So, I would make music in multiple genre: Hip hop, House, Drum and Bass, Grimes, 2-step, and Trap for several years. I started A Serious Production and aquired additional new gear and music programs. I opened several music accounts and uploaded a few music tracks.
My Big Break
When you don’t trust people, you begin to hide your creation. I didn’t want them to steal my music without my permission. So, I was holding unfinished songs and instrumentals on my hard drives for years with nothing to show for it. Luckily, I started working as a recording engineer at Aloha Studios in Stockton.
It wasn’t until I met my friend Letter K and TG that I started playing my music to them. We made a compilation album for Letter K’s 5150 record label. I produced 3 songs, recorded various artists’ music, and engineered the compilation at Aloha Studios. I give a big thanks to Letter K for believing in me.
R-Cal’s first EP
My first solo production project was my little brother, R-Cal. He was starting to be an interesting MC and Beatboxer. So, I persuaded him into producing his first 5 song EP. He agreed and R-Calogy: the study of C.A.M was created. The EP was loaded with Beatboxed and musical composition songs with one guest feature MC, Letter K. He rapped and beatboxed. I engineered, ad-libbed, and produced. It still available for download here on Noisetrade. Not bad for my first solo production credit.
It’s Only 5 (almost)
My first solo album never appeared because I never finish it. I did make one video for the single, High Scorer on Youtube. But, I never finish my 5 song album that I co-produced and co-wrote it with Juda. I fell into a low point in my life that consumed my creativity. I never finished what I started. But, I still have 80% of the album done. I never said I quit.
I have been producing music for myself and others artists for almost 20 years. I have worked with numerous artists. I have produced and engineer several projects. I still have a Soundcloud page and Reverbnation page. I enjoy music production and sound engineering. Now, I work with a local Burlesque group, Pesky Passionettes, as their sound engineer and DJ. It’s different, but I enjoy the work the same as making my music.