Hope everyone had a good New Year! I’m proud to say that IllTal.com is now a year old! The first post of 2013 is a funny one. While googling “prod Ill Tal” I came across a song I didn’t recognize – Sound of da Police (RMX).
In late 2009, Dru Ha – head of Duck Down Records posted a link to a contest on his Twitter feed. In order to promote the upcoming release of the KRS-One/Buckshot album Survival Skills, Duck Down was going to release a mix tape entitled Survival Kit. The mixtape was supposed to be one side of Black Moon remakes and one side of KRS-One/Boogie Down Productions remakes. I submitted the 8 instrumentals they requested for the contest and waited and waited and waited…
The Survival Skills album eventually dropped and I never heard anything about the mixtape. I hit up Dru Ha on Twitter about the contest but never received a response. I assumed they didn’t get enough contest submissions and the project was scrapped.
So 3 years later I find out that the mixtape was in fact released and posted to quite a few music blogs. Luckily, I received production credit. Turns out one of the MC’s on the track, Shawn Chrystopher is actually pretty well known now. His debut album is set to be produced by Timbaland.
Buckshot, front man of Black Moon and leader of the Bootcamp Click released his solo effort The BDI Thug in 1999. The album met with mixed reviews as Buck had abandoned the trademark Beatminerz sound that made Bootcamp famous. Instead, the album was filled with generic, overly-dramatic keyboard beats which were popular at the time. Many of those terrible beats were actually produced by a then unknown producer named Just Blaze. As legend has it, Just met Jay-Z and was told to explore a more soulful sound and stay away from the keyboards. If that’s true, it worked.
Buckshot did have a few cuts produced by Da Beatminerz via Baby Paul on the album. The standout being “Breath Control” which samples Catalyst‘s
Catalyst was a Jazz-fusion group out of Philadelphia. Their debut, self-titled album was released on Cobblestone Records, a subsidiary of Buddha. Eddie Green was the leader of the group and worked with artists such as Etta James, O.C. Smith, and Billy Paul. The overall vibe of the album is very dope with heavy use of bass and electric vibes. Check out the cut.
Around 2002, I was hanging out with Shucky Duck, Duck Down Record’s tour manager at the time. He was a cool dude and invited my manager and me to come to the studio where some “artists” were coming through. I don’t remember which studio it was in New York City, but it was one of the popular ones during the 90′s. Shucky told me to sit in the receptionist area and play my beat CD so when artists came in, they could hear them.
The roster of artists I met that night was pretty overwhelming. One after another, the following artists came through the door – Buckshot, Illanoyz, Sean Price, The Representativz, The Heatmakerz, Cuban Link and Psycho Les (of the Beatnuts).
Buckshot was sitting down next to me arguing with what I assume was a female friend on the phone. I’ll never forget when he said “If you wanna be a hoe, then that’s fine just be a hoe.” Anyways, after his conversation he was sitting their listening to the beats I was playing. When “Not for You” came on, he turned to me and said “this you? I really like this, this is dope” and wrote some lines in his notepad.
Needless to say, I never did get to produce a track for Buckshot. But maybe if things went down slightly different, he would have recorded over this one.