Behind the Beats is back. Two weeks in a row, we had to hold back because of other pressing developments, but we still have love for our DJs and producers. Today, Jim Jonsin checks in to speak on his multitude of upcoming tracks and what’s been taking so long for his signee B.o.B, a.k.a. Bobby Ray, to come out with his debut (Rebel Rock Records has a partnership with Grand Hustle/ Atlantic).
And just because we stunt hard, we’re hitting you with more Drake. Yeah, there’s been a lot of Drizzy this week on the site, but what do you want us to do, sit on content concerning the game’s most sought-after free agent? For the first time, Drake talks about working with Jay-Z on Blueprint 3 as well as Mary J. Blige on her new record “The One.”
Behind the Beats: Jim Jonsin
Get your hip-hop guys right: [artist id="1796387"]Jim Jones[/artist] runs with the Diplomats; Jim Jonsin produces hit records.
Jonsin did get a kick out of reading some of the original credits for the song “Pop Champagne,” which mixed up the two Jims. Jonsin got a call from his manager asking if they should pop champagne for real and celebrate upcoming publishing checks. Obviously not. But Jim Jonsin has more than enough work to keep him and his managers drowning in Moët Rosé all year long.
“I don’t like answering phone calls all the time,” he said about the downside to being one of the hottest producers in the game. “My managers can do that.”
Last year, Jonsin smashed the game with two of the biggest songs of 2008: [artist id="510062"]Lil Wayne’s[/artist] “Lollipop” and [artist id="1225081"]T.I.’s[/artist] “Whatever You Like.” This year, his amazing streak continued, most notably with [artist id="2814953"]Soulja Boy Tell’em’s[/artist] #1 hit “Kiss Me Thru the Phone.”
“Rock and roll is pretty much what I listen to most of the time and hip-hop,” said Jonsin, sitting in Chung King Studios with a group of musicians and a couple of songwriters. “So I use all those influences. And I love rock. I’m gonna try to do as much as I can in that, get my Rick Rubin on.”
He has [artist id="960856"]Linkin Park[/artist] and Daughtry lined up to work out his rock aggression, and he’s still trying to figure out what direction to take Carrie Underwood. Meanwhile, he has [artist id="1270"]Usher[/artist] as his most notable R&B client right now. As for hip-hop, he’s got Young Dro, Trick Daddy, Pitbull and a Nipsey Hussle and [artist id="1162"]Wyclef Jean[/artist] collabo called “Hello.”
Jonsin started out in the music game in the ’80s in Miami during the Luther Campbell era.
“I was playing everything, infusing hip-hop with rock and roll,” he said. “Miami bass music, disco music, R&B. I would even play a cappella slow jams over bass beats or rock the drum machine under the a cappella while I was playing.”
He made a few electronica albums under various stage names (Jim Jonsin is actually not his given name either). He always wanted to produce hip-hop, but with the Miami bass sound so dominant in his hometown, he couldn’t find an end — until the music shifted. His breakthrough year was 2004, when he produced “Dammit Man” for Pitbull and “Let’s Go” for [artist id="500937"]Trick Daddy[/artist]. Jamie Foxx’s “Unpredictable” was one of the big hits he enjoyed the following year. From there, he’s been laying them down for the likes of Twista, Bow Wow and Omarion, [artist id="1236911"]Beyoncé[/artist], Fat Joe and [artist id="2400155"]Danity Kane[/artist].
“The one thing I think is wack,” he said of his industry gripes, “I can deliver you a record in January of last year, and you hear the record now, and you’re like, ‘Oh, my God. That’s that fire.’ That’s the same sh– from last year. We got old records in the catalog being sold. But that’s just how it goes when you’re hot.”
“The label got their own ideas of what they wanted,” Jonsin said of the album delay for B.o.B, a.k.a. Bobby Ray , whom he signed. “We just did this joint venture with T.I. So you got Atlantic, Grand Hustle and Rebel Rock. My thing with Bob from the beginning was, ‘Find what you want to do. Whatever it is, I’ll help you.’ Throughout all this, he’s been growing and finding out what he loves most. He’s finding himself listening to more Coldplay and things like that. So he’s influenced by that. So we go in the studio and said, ‘What’s the first thing that comes to mind?’ And we did it. And we just did three songs. They’re like pop/rock/hip-hop. Fun and exciting. Summertime jams.”
Five-Star Stellar Hits
» Jamie Foxx – “Unpredictable”
» Lil Wayne – “Lollipop”
» Slim Thug – “I Run”
» T.I. – “Whatever You Like”
» Trick Daddy (featuring Lil Jon and Jim Jonsin) – “Let’s Go”
Hottest Streak Thus Far
2008-present: “Whatever You Like” by T.I. (2008), “Lollipop” by Lil Wayne (2008), “Kiss Me Thru the Phone” by Soulja Boy Tell’em (2009)
The Streets Is Talking: News & Notes From The Underground
Drake can confirm that at least one of his major collaborations will be a single soon. He said to look for his record with Mary J. Blige to get a full push soon. Funny note on that record: Besides blowing her a kiss at the Summer Jam concert a couple of weeks ago and her catching it, Drizzy still hasn’t formally met the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul.
Everybody has been talking about a Jay-Z record featuring [artist id="2545682"]Drake[/artist] that’s supposed to be a big summer single leading into the Blueprint 3‘s release on September 11 . Well, Drake said he did work with Jay, but Hov has not yet confirmed that their studio tag-team will be a single.
“The Mary thing was set up as a single,” the Young Money White Knight said on the set of the “Best I Ever Had” video in Brooklyn a few days ago. “The Jay thing, I don’t now how official that is. I just read that on the Internet. But it’s cool. I’m glad the work I’m doing is something that people are even considering putting out as a single. ‘Cause singles, you have to be confident in those songs when you’re talking about singles. It’s great. I’m glad that I’m delivering for people.”
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