“It’s never the machine but it’s the man behind the machine.” - 9th Wonder
The interview below was first published by Soul Culture TV in April 2009. Why are we shedding light on an interview from 10 years ago you may ask yourself? Well firstly it's with an absolute legend of the game, producer, record executive, DJ, lecturer, and rapper, 9th Wonder. Secondly the points he raised are still valuable to musicians and aspiring producers today.
In this short interview he discusses how he got his break, the music he was putting out and the art of sampling. 9th also shares some essential business knowledge for producers building their personal brands.
On being different 9th recalls how he got his break putting out a mass of beats in his now widely recognized signature style of sound. Coming at a time when the mainstream sound had changed his Boom Bap style was refreshing and helped gain him exposure leading him to greater opportunities. Don’t be afraid to go against what everyone else is doing.
“People are scared of what they don’t understand and don’t know.”
9th also discusses the Art of sampling and how he feels a distinct lack of credit is given to the art of DJing and Hip Hop production.
“In order for you to chop a sample you must understand chord progression.”
One other takeaway that is still relevant today to any up and coming producer is how 9th recognized the need to put his face out there more and the understanding he had that 9th Wonder was in fact a business and not just a name.
“Some people need to see what your doing, how your doing it, what makes you so special… in order for them to believe that what you do means something”
In his own words 9th states “I’m just all music” and this is something many producers can most likely relate to. 9th Wonder is a great example of a producer who built their brand and business authentically off of a solid foundation of love and dedication to their craft.
See the full interview below