While it can safely be said that nearly everyone loves listening to some form of music, not everyone builds their life around the sultry thrum of its notes. Music, for most, is the go-to stress-reliever; what we listen to when we crave artistic entertainment.
There are those, though, that thrive on music, that cannot live without its flow. We all know of singers, both famous and otherwise, who make music their life, but there are other members of this musically focused group that often go over-looked. These members are not singers, but producers and creators of the tunes and beats that singers later brand with lyrics and make their own.
One of these producers graciously agreed to discuss a little of his producing history, and his experience in the music industry, in the interview below:
KW: First of all, thanks for agreeing to do this! Why don't you start off by telling us a little bit about yourself?
D: My name is Drew a.k.a. DrewsThatDude. I'm a 24 year old multi-platinum, Grammy nominated producer and multi-instrumentalist from Hempstead, NY.
I attended Berklee College of Music and I love music, sports, traveling and food.
KW: When did you know you wanted to go into the music industry?
D: When I first started learning how to play bass at about 14/15. I started to learn about the behind-the-scenes aspect of the music industry from my mentor at the time and from that point forward I wanted to make the steps towards making the music industry my life.
KW: How did your journey begin? How did you first start working toward your goals?
D: My friend who I played basketball with in high school was producing music on his computer and he had no music background at all. I, being super competitive, wanted to try my hand at producing that way and he put me up on which programs I should check out, what websites to look into, and we were actually going to start working together, but he ended up moving out of state.
KW: How long have you been in the industry? What is it like? Any ups or downs, positives or negatives?
D: I would say I got my first taste of real industry experience in 2009, so about 7 years. It’s extremely frustrating, but once you get your foot in the door and get things rolling it really is all about how you turn negatives into positives and make the best of annoying or bad situations. Obviously the ups are great you get access to a lot of great music and experiences, traveling, parties, but it comes with its same stresses that most people in entertainment industries go through…High stress work environments with a lot of egos.
KW: What kind/genre of music inspires your work? Who are some of your favorite artists?
D: I would say a lot of fusion genres inspire my music, bands who really try and meld and mix different genres together and can't quite be put into one box. Stevie Wonder, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Incubus, The Mars Volta, Jeff Lorber Fusion Band, Jamiroquai, and various producers of the R&B and Soul genres.
KW: Are there any unknown artists who inspire you?
D: My peers inspire me: Gravez, Fortune, Elhae, SPZRKT, PYRMDPLAZA, Saaj.
KW: Who would you work with if you had the chance? Any individuals or artists you would like to give a shout out to that really helped you on your path?
D: Honestly, I don’t even have a preference. I would love to work with an artist like SZA on a full project though, I think that would come out great. As far as people who helped me out on my path there are tons, but immediately it would be Erik who helps me run the whole operation, Grant Tucker of SCKNOWS who helps do all my art direction, Maryam who helped me decide this was a good idea to pursue in the first place, and all the various writers and website owners who helped cover and press my projects such as ArtisticManifesto.com and Sermons Domain!
KW: Do you have any advice to other aspiring artists? Any "tricks of the trade" you would like to pass along?
D: The best advice is to just always keep working and that you’ll get better with time. I don’t have many tricks but, Evernote is one of the best apps ever for keeping all your files and notes organized!
KW: Thanks again for this bit of insight.
D: Thank you for reaching out and talking with me! People often ask me my production discography,which includes Lil Wayne, T-Pain, Mac Miller, Young Jeezy, Tamar Braxton, Omarion and others. Theres a full list of everything over on my website at www.DrewsThatDude.com and you can keep up with most of my current releases over at www.soundcloud.com/drewsthatdude