Producers usually have no idea when an artist will debut the final version of music they've worked on together, but on Tuesday, you heard Vinylz’s beats on big tracks from both J.Cole and Nicki Minaj.
Cole fans know that he takes pride in producing his own tracks – Born Sinner was almost entirely self-produced – but this time around he made an exception to work closely with Vinylz (who previously co-produced Drake’s “5AM in Toronto” and “0 to 100”). The two were introduced after the North Carolina rapper heard his work during a session with Jeremih.
“J. Cole reached out to me, and said, 'Man, I love your sound, I would love to sit and build with you. I don’t really mess with too many producers, but I really like your sound and it’d be an honor for me to sit with you and work,'” Vinylz told MTV News on Wednesday.
To record this album, Cole relocated to Los Angeles and set up shop. That’s where their first session for the controversial track “Fire Squad” took place.
“'Fire Squad’ was the first record we worked on,” Vinylz explained. “He started the beat, so I went to his crib in L.A. where he had a studio built in, and he played me that record.”
“It was a skeleton basically, and he said, ‘I’d love for you to work on this beat,’ so we got right to it, changed it up and then he just started rapping right there. I only heard the first verse and the lyrical content was already crazy.”
“A Tale of 2 Citiez,” a much grittier track, came together when Cole took a recent trip to the east coast.
“He called and said, ‘I really want you to sit with me and work on this album for the whole week – and he didn’t really sit with many producers, it was just two or three. So I played him a bunch of beats, he picked about 15 of them and that’s the one that stuck out.”
Vinylz think it was his blend of old and new that might’ve attracted someone like Cole.
“I think you get the best of both worlds [with my beats]. A lot of rappers really want that '90s feel, but they don’t wanna use the old school-ness of the original boom bap beat,” he explained. “I marry both of those sounds. And I try not to listen to the radio much. I always try to listen to old records, because recently a lot of production sounds the same.”
You’ll also be hearing Vinylz’s work on Fabolous’ upcoming album The Young OG Project, which will definitely have a ‘90s feel to it, like Fab confirmed to MTV News earlier this week.
“Fab’s album kept changing, but he finally got the theme, so he’s been asking for stuff that felt like the '90s but with a new bounce that younger fans would gravitate towards. It’s kinda like ‘0 to 100,’ – it gives you a ‘90s feel but with a recent bounce.”
J.Cole, Nicki Minaj, and Fabolous will all drop their projects in December, so Vinylz will be blasting in every direction you turn.
And since Drake is working on a new album and a mixtape, there will likely be plenty more of him in 2015. “He’s been calling in his go-to producers – he’s back to work.”