For discussion about setting up your studio and advice on the gear and equipment within it.
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By RonDu Sun Mar 27, 2005 12:51 am
Aiight, I searched and didn't find anything regarding this article I'm posting from Remix mag. If it was then I apologize for reposting. I just found it very interesting...

KANYE WEST

By Ken Micallef

Feb 1, 2004 12:00 PM


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You may not know him yet, but hip-hop producers don't come much hotter or hard-working than Kanye West. During the past six years, the 26-year-old has racked up triumphs with such big-money movers as Jay-Z, Foxy Brown, Nas, Alicia Keys and Eminem. How does he do it? Not with any Digidesign Pro Tools or Emagic Logic rig, that's for sure. “I don't use a computer or a lot of equipment in my studio,” West declares. “What do I need all that stuff for?”

West uses four primary pieces for sampling, sequencing and recording duties: An Ensoniq ASR-10 keyboard, an Akai MPC2000 MIDI Production Center, a Roland VS-1880 24-bit Digital Studio Workstation and a Gemini PT-1000 II turntable.

“I recorded College Dropout with just that,” West says. “I got a record player with no top on it. It's a Gemini, just like me. Like most Geminis, I am two people: I'm a rapper and a producer. Hell, yeah.”

West's minimalism doesn't affect his output. His debut, The College Dropout (Roc-a-fella/Def Jam, 2004), boasts cameos from the Harlem Boy's Choir and a few of hip-hop's elite — Mos Def, Ludacris, Dirt McGirt (formerly Ol' Dirty Bastard) and Freeway — as well as some outstanding vocal samples. West doesn't stress over his skills; he is more concerned with sound and style.

“I don't give a **** about equipment or technique,” West says. “It is just about how it sounds at the end of the day. My claim to fame is to get the most out of the least: simplify. I go through my closet every month and give away all the clothes that I don't really love. I have a better chance of putting on something good every morning if I just have all hot ****.”

One of West's trademarks, besides classic '70s soul loops, is ample use of speed. Almost every other track on The College Dropout features a sped-up vocal sample, be it Dinah Washington on “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” or Chaka Khan on “Through the Wire.”

“I sample them at regular speed, then speed them up inside the ASR-10,” he explains. “I just put the pitch up on the sampler, and it will go faster. The ASR-10 is like my left hand. I can chop samples into 61 pieces without wasting any memory. A lot of old songs are too slow to rap on. So I got to speed them up to a rappable tempo.”

The album's multiple treats include a searing Lauryn Hill sample (on “Falls Down”) and gorgeous choral vocals from the Harlem Boy's Choir (on “2 Words”). The Choir might be from Harlem, but that is the last place West could find it. “I wanted that track to be more than just another hip-hop song,” West recalls. “I wanted the Harlem Boy's Choir on it, but nobody wanted to pay the $10,000. We wasted $3,500 on Hezekiah Walker, but it wasn't my vision. I finally said, ‘We have to have the Harlem Boy's Choir.’ I drove all the way to west bubba — wherever — Crystal Lake, where they were at boy's camp. It was like a place where they would shoot a scary movie. I went through hell to get to heaven on that song.”

With “Jesus Walks” and “Drug Dealin',” The College Dropout may be the most socially responsible hip-hop album since Public Enemy's heyday, but will the average fans get it? West knows they will. “Good music isn't always about being in the shower with a bunch of chicks,” he says. “When DeNiro was working on Meet the Parents, he didn't wonder if his fans from Goodfellas would like it. Human beings have many different dimensions. Nelly can fill that part of their life; it is for me to fulfill other parts. A lot of people are copying each other, but I don't have nothing to do with those people.”
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By AMG Sun Mar 27, 2005 1:23 am
Thanks man...good read!
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By Blue Haze Sun Mar 27, 2005 4:51 am
Nice thread and info. Keep it simple but keep it Hot.

Less is more when you master what you have. :D
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By en2 Sun Mar 27, 2005 8:21 am
thanks for the info direct from the source :!:
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By DaSoof Sun Mar 27, 2005 4:58 pm
thanks for that


Well, due to kanye's simple setup his tunes have no depth whatsoever. maybee he just isnt using his sh!t properly.

By tdot Sun Mar 27, 2005 8:03 pm
lol
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By Ron Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:20 pm
tdot wrote:lol


Whats wrong if you don't mind me asking? Just noticed your replies on a few posts.
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By Tha S-ence Mon Mar 28, 2005 12:12 am
i dont understand how people still look up to kanye. producers have been doin stuff with the least amount of equipment for a long ass time. nuffin new, im just tired of hearin bout kanye thats all....ill stop now
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By DSTRUCT Mon Mar 28, 2005 12:14 am
i bugged out when i first learned of kanyes setup. Its real similar to mine-

mpc 2000

roland vs890 (he just has more tracks)

**** turntable

i just dont have the asr
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By MattMatiks PG Mon Mar 28, 2005 12:45 am
Tha S-ence wrote:i dont understand how people still look up to kanye. producers have been doin stuff with the least amount of equipment for a long ass time. nuffin new, im just tired of hearin bout kanye thats all....ill stop now


I hear you on that... I mean Premo did most of the classic Gangstarr sh*t on an MPC-60 and an S950...

I like Kanye, but I wasn't shocked when I found out what he uses... It's simple, but I mean he doesn't exactly make the most complex beats... His sound has a lot to do with engineers he uses also so it's not all his equipment...

Like I said I like Kanye's beats and I think he's a great producer, but his setup is nothing shockingly simple...

By AXE26 Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:08 am
^^^no doubt. also just like u said when u hear his stuff its finished product done in professional studios with engineers and musicians sometimes playing stuff over for them they have all this at their disposal. but producer's skeleton tracks are usually done with the stuff they learned on or most comfortable with :D
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By Blue Haze Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:51 am
I love the fact that a bro with heart, mastery of his setup, and little economic means had some of the top artists in the industry from Jay-Z, Beans, to Alicia Keys choose his beats and have the s*h*i*t played on the radio. I love the fact when I hear for the first time "This Can`t Be Life" I got moved by the atmosphere and emotion of that beat cuz I wasn`t a big Jay-Z and I didn`t have much love for the Neptunes either. And I love the fact that since Roc lead man have been making an impact that the production values have open to more of a soulful, type of soul rather than just a keyboard bells and lead lines playing everywhere. Lastly it proved my point of less it more if you mastered your setup. Buying alot of gear means alot of manual reading, months spent deciphering terms, and learning the possiblities of the gear. Hip hop isn`t about the gear, Hip hop is about the sound be it a sample or sythn rompler sounds manipulating, evolving, clipping, and distorting it into something new. Most important is that all of the artist reallly, really, really, dig your joints enough to rap or sing over them. I give Kanye this props cuz the Pros realized a pro when they heard his ideas, tracks, and his soul. How many others with or with more gear can do the same thing yet? :D


Quote from Dance/House producer A Guy Called Gerald

"It`s ridiculous to think that your music will sound better if you go out and buy the latest keyboard. People tend to crave more equipment when they don`t know what they want from their music."

"I went into the studio with all my favorite records and said sample this, this, and this." quote by Goldie.


:D Of course I would be happy if some of this board members make it too with no hate. But I would only learn his philosophy of master your craft, master your tools, learn from your idols, his case Premo, and finally evolve into your own sound. If the next artist can see your vision and feel your music more power to ya.

Be original

By tdot Mon Mar 28, 2005 5:59 am
Ron wrote:
tdot wrote:lol


Whats wrong if you don't mind me asking? Just noticed your replies on a few posts.


i was just laughiung at the guy above me

he said, kanye is not using his equipment properly... :lol:
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By mpc4000xl Mon Mar 28, 2005 2:36 pm
RZA MADE MASSIVE Classics on BASICALLY an ASR..................

PETE ROCK MASHED UP THE SP12 then the SP1200......................

Kanye is Good ......NOT KNOCKIN' DUDE ........Jus' Gotta Be Focused.......


Alchemist Went BANANAZ on Jus' An ASR for a While........................
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By Blue Haze Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:29 pm
mpc4000xl wrote:RZA MADE MASSIVE Classics on BASICALLY an ASR..................

PETE ROCK MASHED UP THE SP12 then the SP1200......................

Kanye is Good ......NOT KNOCKIN' DUDE ........Jus' Gotta Be Focused.......


Alchemist Went BANANAZ on Jus' An ASR for a While........................


We all got love for the originators how about posting some articles about how they get down. :?:

Whatever happened to that Beatkings video anyway?