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May 11, 2012

ASCAP's "On the Come Up" Series - May Edition

Tone P

Tone P

Highlighting ASCAP's urban songwriters and composers, "On the Come Up" is designed to inspire our members to remember that success is only a song away.

Producer Tone P shares the secrets of his melodic success with “On the Come Up.”

Where are you originally from?
Tone P: Southwest Washington, D.C.

You are considered to be Wale’s go-to producer. How did you get the opportunity to work with Wale? And how is your experience working with him?
TP: I was in D.C. After graduating from school, I had to get a job so I started shopping beats all over the city. Every studio, everywhere music was involved, I was there. I was going in the studio, working to be the best that I could be in the studio. After one year, we met each other right after he was just beginning to get some radio play. When I came on, I blended the go-go sound with Hip-hop. Magically, he got one of my beats through an email. I tried to get him to listen to my music when we were in the studio and he was like, “Nah, I’ll listen to your CD later,” and I was like, “No, no, no.” He gave me a ride back to the train station and I ejected his CD and put mine in. As we were riding, he was listening and he was like, “This is crazy,” so from there we took go-go music and blended it with Hip-Hop and it took off.

How is your production style different from other producers?
TP: Because I’m from D.C. - I know that’s so cliché to say – when you hear my records like “Ice Cream Girl,” “Bait,” or “Pretty Girls,” you can obviously hear it. I take it a step further than music, too. “Bait” was a chant, initially. We just emphasized off of the song and flipped it.

What are you currently working on?
TP: I have a record with Curren$y on his new album called, The Stoned Immaculate.

What inspires you to compose music?
TP: Just sitting around and listening to old school records. I didn’t even know that Marvin Gaye was flat out on the piano. Everybody from that era was just good. They did everything. Old school records give me motivation. I like the musicianship from the ‘80s and ‘90s. I also love to listen to go-go bands like Backyard Band, Uncalled For, TCB, E.U., Raw Image, and so on. All of these bands are just dope to me. I’ve been going to their shows since I was 14, so I love it. I love live music over anything.

Who is your musical mentor and why?
TP: DJ Toomp has been a mentor to me in the last few months. I watch his process. Every time I come in his room, he’s got a different set-up. He’s always got some new gadgets. I always wonder how he keeps working when everything is everywhere, but I’ve learned that analog sound is just heavier and that’s what he uses. The digital is cool, but using analog makes the music bang harder. It’s a feel. You’ll hear the difference. He’s been teaching me a lot about the industry, as well.

What advice do you have for up-and-coming producers?
TP: Consistency. When you’re consistent, you’ll always be in the loop and people will see that you’re serious. Also, be articulate in what you do. You have to be precise, smart, and humble at the same time. There’s a time when you turn on the swag and there’s a time to be chill. The only time when you turn on the swag is when you’re going to an awards show or you’re at a video shoot. Other than that, be cool, be yourself, and let the music speak for itself. Go as far as you can. I’m about to enroll myself into a piano class. Go learn every aspect of your craft. Be your own teacher.

For more information on Tone P, follow him on Twitter at @TONEPBOA.



DJ Spinz

DJ Spinz

Producer DJ Spin, talks to “On the Come Up” about putting a twist on today’s music.

Where are you originally from?
DJ Spinz: Well, originally, I am from Augusta [Georgia].

What was your first introduction into the music industry?
S: I started as a DJ at 16 in Augusta at a radio station there. Then I moved to attend college at The Art Institute of Atlanta and I started a satellite radio station with [DJ] Scream on Hip Hop Nation. Then I started working at HOT 107.9 here in Atlanta.

How is your production style different from other producers?
S: It’s club-inspired. That’s been my lifestyle, so it’s definitely club-inspired with a southern flavor. It’s 808-driven too, although I also have stuff that is not 808-driven.

What are you currently working on?
S: Right now, I got “Cashin’ Out” by Cash Out and “Riot” by 2 Chainz out. I am doing some stuff with Waka [Flocka Flame], Future, Rich Kidz, and Rick Ross. I just had a meeting with Young Jeezy and I am trying to get with T.I., so I’m working.

What inspires you to compose music?
Spinz: Other good music. I hear good songs and it makes me want to go and make good music.

Who is your musical mentor and why?
Spinz: I don’t really have a mentor, but I look up to Kanye West, Lil’ Wayne, Justin Bieber, Chris Brown, and other people who make good music.

What advice do you have for up-and-coming producers?
Spinz: Always go 10 thousand times harder than the next man, work hard, and don’t sleep. There’s a lot of guys out here trying to make music, so you have to be the one who goes harder. Be original.

For more information on DJ Spinz, follow him on Twitter at @spinzhoodrich.



Hoodie Allen

Hoodie Allen

Songwriter Hoodie Allen chats with “On the Come Up” about being different in the music industry.


Where are you originally from?
Hoodie Allen: Long Island, NY.

What was your first introduction into the music industry?
HA: Getting a booking agent after some of my songs started taking off online in 2010.

What differentiates you from other artists?
HA: My attitude, especially towards my fans.

What are you currently working on?
HA: Just released my first retail EP. Now I am beginning to work on a free mixtape and full length release for later this year. 

What inspires you to create music?
HA: The people I meet and the places I go. I like to tell stories. 

Who is your musical mentor and why?
HA: I don't think I have a mentor. There's been no one to guide or help me musically, but I do look up to Andre 3000 and Kanye West and countless other artists.

What advice do you have for up-and-coming artists?
HA: Make music that you can be proud of. Don't worry about what you think people want to hear.

For more information on Hoodie Allen, follow him on Twitter at @hoodieallen.