In honor of announcing the winner this Friday of our latest beat competition, we wanted to sit down with guest judge, producer / film composer Stupid Genius, who is the genius (pardon the pun) behind P5audio’s latest Reggae release, Club Reggae Construction Loop Sets. Check out what stupid had to say about working as a full time independent producer…
P5: What up Stupid Genius? Thank you for taking some time to talk with us! You just released the Club Reggae Loop sets through P5audio. Tell us how you went about crafting these bangin’loops, and why producers need sounds like these to make modern Reggae hits?
SG: Back in 2007, I supposedly landed a deal with a multi-platinum producer who has played an integral role in the development of several big artists. He put a big roster of superstars that he wanted me to work with on my plate. Most of these were reggae artists, as he gained interest in my production after hearing my modern instrumental remake of Bob Marley & The Wailers’ “I Shot The Sheriff.” As hungry as I was, I sleeplessly increased my work ethic. I stacked over 100 quality reggae beats (riddims) in a few short months. Like many situations in this industry, even when contracts are signed there is a LOT of uncertainty. The deal fell through before it got off the ground, but I embraced the blessing-in-disguise aspect which let me to refine my productions skills, increase my quality of work, and develop my signature sound. In this set are kits and sounds I have developed and used to create tracks that have already PROVEN to be successful in the recording, film, and television industries. Not copies of trending styles like most loop sets you hear. The uniqueness in this product that will benefit EVERY producer is that it harnesses the power of four styles of music: the bass-heavy hypnotic vibe of reggae, the syncopated rhythms of dancehall, the grit and melodic feel of dirty south music, and the head-noddin’ bang of hip-hop.
P5: And who were some of your biggest influences forthis project?
SG: The list would start with earlier artists such as Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, Toots and the Maytals; to the sounds of Eek-a-Mouse, Barrington Levy, Dennis Brown, Ninjaman, Shabba Ranks, and Supercat; to the vibe of Bounty Killer, Beenie Man, Buju Banton, Capleton, and Sizzla, to the modern spin of Mavado, Vybz Kartel, Collie Buddz, and the entire Marley clan. Producers would include Joe Higgs, King Tubby, Lee “Scratch” Perry, Sly & Robbie, Steelie & Cleevie, Tony Kelly, Don Corleone, and Stephen McGreggor.
P5: So we just saw the premiere of your new video for the single ‘My Theme Park,’ which looks and sounds amazing! Congratulations on that. How did this whole song and video come about?
SG: The beat started out as an accident. Back when I lived alone, I had my studio setup in my living room. I was vacuuming the floor and I went to move my keyboard and I accidentally played the the main four notes of the melody, and immediately threw down the vacuum and built the beat. The name came because I was listening to Drake’s “Forever” and Lil’ Wayne’s lyrics that said “what should I scream for – this is my theme park” were playing. That weekend I competed in the finals for an iStandard beat battle in Miami (I ended up getting 3rd place that time) and a friend and I hit Club Play on South Beach when it was the hot spot. It was a crazy night in the club with dozens of industry superstars from Cash Money to the Triple C’s/Maybach Music squad & Floyd Mayweather, and it was Hennessy Black nite, where the drink was being introduced. When I got back to the studio, that night inspired my pen. I let Jay Fresko hear it and he immediately jumped on it. The rest is history and you can all check the video here!
P5: You’ve had a lot of placements, particularly in film andtelevision, what are some of the credits you have under your belt?
SG: For television, I have had more than 300 placements on 30+ shows on MTV, BET, VH1, E!, Style, The History Channel, Bravo, G4, The Green Channel, TLC, Oxygen, Discovery, Women’s Entertainment, TBS, & NBC. These shows include Keeping Up With The Kardashians (all varieties), Cribs, Basketball Wives, Access Hollywood, Cities of the Underworld, Wreck Chasers, Road Rules Challenge, Bully Beatdown, etc. I am currently working on a couple solo projects of major label artists, but I have put much of my focus on the roster for South Coast Records, an Orlando-based indie label which I am the in-house producer for. I produced my “Stupid Is As Stupid Does” and am working on projects for South Coast Artists Jay Fresko and S.K.Y. I have scored an indie film this year, and produced Jay Fresko’s song “Time Will Tell” which will be featured in Mark Wahlberg’s upcoming Universal Pictures release, ‘Contraband.’
P5: Being based out of Orlando, Florida, which has a lot of action, but wouldn’t necessarily be considered a musical hub like an LA, Atlanta or Miami; yet, you’ve had a lot of success as a working producer, filmcomposer, song writer, etc. What are some of the strategies behind your success?
SG: Music production was something I wanted to do since I was a teenager, and I realized years ago that you need to have a heavy networking grind if you want to make moves. That involves a lot of traveling to conferences, showcases, beat battles, industry events, workshops, club events, etc. Once you make connections and develop relationships with people in other regions, you can always stay accessible via the Internet and gain from the benefits of shared networks. It is important to have a strong presence locally and regionally, which has been a large focus I have had with South Coast Records’ C.E.O., Larry Poynter, Jr. Other than that, you must always be prepared no matter where you go and submit to every opportunity you come across that you possibly can.
P5: And what can we expect to hear from Stupid Genius in 2012?
SG: We are shooting a video for my next single in January, for the remix to a song from my album, “Hold Tight.” The remix was produced by Rahgroove Productions and features Orlando female singer, Ces. I am producing 2 projects for South Coast Records: Jay Fresko’s debut EP and an urban dubstep project with new artist S.K.Y. I’m also working with a few more Orlando-based artists. I am also producing a project for long time friend and mic aficionado Hank Tate, titled “I’m With Stupid.”
The film “Contraband” will be released in January featuring “Time Will Tell” as I mentioned that I produced for Jay Fresko.
Television placements will continue as I keep good and current relations with the licensing companies I work with.
Other than that, I will probably be performing a lot with my South Coast camp, constantly be making new beats and writing songs for myself and for more label submissions, and chillin’ with my fam, including my lovely wife who I just married less than 2 months ago!
Oh yeah, and I’ll probably release my 2nd album in the 3rd qtr, and put together a few dope products for P5 Audio!
P5: Excellent man! Congratulations on everything, and thank you very much for talking with us!
Learn more about Stupid Genius here: