Legendary producer Just Blaze gave fans an update of sorts on Jay Electronica’s album, his infamous battle with Swizz Beatz and more treats for Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” series on Wednesday (March 15).
When he’s not being praised as the game’s top producer, the New Jersey native has become the go-to for any updates of Electronica’s fawned over project. When fans asked him to describe the album, Blaze provided a familiar answer. “Jay’s album… ethereal,” he said. “No other way to describe it.” In the past, Blaze has confirmed the album’s completion but also suggested the rapper may not need to release it. “He believes his train is running on schedule and you know what, maybe he doesn’t need to drop an album,” he told Day 1 Radio in 2015. The album exists. I’ve got it right here in my pocket.”
Continuing his AMA, he explained the vision behind his crates of hits with Jay Z, Kanye West, Fabolous and more. “I just make music for people’s lives,” he said. “I don’t worry about the “club” or “radio.” If the music ends up there, great, if not, I’m fine with that. As a producer, you have to bring out the best in the artists, writers, and musicians that you work with. Being a therapist/coach ends up coming with the territory.”
He also addressed his battle with Swizz Beatz and why he didn’t follow suit when Swizz played a never before heard track with DMX, Nas and Jay Z. “I didn’t want to clap back,” he explained. “That was 3 hours in. I was tired and very sick that night. Had to come to an end at some point.”
Other tidbits during the AMA included his favorite Kanye West album (Graduation) and a declaration of Pharell as the “greatest ever.”
Check out more below.
Advice to producers on dealing with creative blocks: “Best way to push thru is to walk away and come back fresh,” he said. “Inspiration can be found anywhere. I can’t tell you the best place to find it because each of us is different and interprets the world differently. What I can tell you is when you come across it, DO NOT IGNORE IT. I’ve made that mistake way too many times.”
Favorite beat he didn’t make: Daft Punk’s “Voyager“
Favorite sandwich meat: Honey Turkey, but he’s considering going back to a vegan lifestyle.
Favorite RZA beat: “Protect Ya Neck”
Why he doesn’t have a personal favorite beat: “My music is an extension of me. I liken it to children. Parents love all their children. I love all of my music. Even my songs that suck.. which there are a few!! lol”
When making Jay Z’s The Blueprint: “I always say, you don’t know you’re making magic or a classic when you’re in the process. You’re just doing what you do. That said, it was a great vibe and truly a collaborative effort. All of us were bouncing ideas off of each other with the goal of just doing what was best for the project.
On good kid, m.A.A.d city: Kendrick Lamar’s first time working with Dr. Dre was for the track “Compton” off his debut album, good kid, m.A.A.d city.
Making Kanye West’s “Touch The Sky”: Blaze used a Roland VP-9000 for the track. “It was Ableton before Ableton,” he said. “Such an amazing box, even to this day. Their time compression to expansion and pitch shift algorithms are still top notch to this day.”
His life path could have gone another route: One of hip-hop’s favorites wanted to program computers. “I was great at it,” he said. “Wrote my first video game at 8 years old. Then I got to college and realized I would have to make it all the way to calculus 3 and I sucked at math. Music was always my natural inclination but the idea of making it in the business seemed very farfetched to me as a kid.. kinda still does.”
See more of his AMA here.