Producers to Watch

Four producers to watch in 2014: WondaGurl, DJ Dahi, SuicideYear and Dun Deal.

December 02, 2013

From the magazine: ISSUE 89, December 2013/January 2014

In FADER's annual Now Issue, we get up close and personal with the artists setting the tone for the next year. We looked at record labels, models, authors, video directors and many more. Here are four producers to watch in 2014.

Location: Toronto, ON
Age: 16
Gear: FL Studio
Notable beats: Jay Z’s “Crown,” Travi$ Scott’s “Uptown,” SZA’s “Teen Spirit”
Signature sound: “A lot of hard drums and weird sounds and samples. I like to add things that you would never think of adding. It’s work, work, work. Start with a sound or sample that intrigues you, and build around that.”
Wishes for 2014: “I hope everyone continues to develop their own sound to help music—not just rap music—evolve even further.”

Location: Los Angeles, CA
Age: 30
Gear: Logic Pro, “pretty much anything Native Instruments”
Notable beats: Drake’s “Worst Behavior,” Kendrick Lamar’s “Money Trees”
Signature sound: “I’m very melody-first. I like to have melodies that trigger emotions, so I’ll use ambient-sounding stuff, or vocal samples, as a structure in the beat. I love to use voices; I love to use language. From there, I can build drums around the melody.”
Wishes for 2014: “To help artists become not as comfortable with what has already been done. Overall, a good thing for pushing forward is to find something that is maybe not a part of rap, and make it rap. If you listen to alternative music, gospel, country—you can make it rap. You just gotta make it sound dope.”

Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Age: 18
Gear: FL Studio, Numark Mixtrack Pro
Notable beats: Yung Lean’s “Hurt,” Little Pain’s “SMH,” Main Attrakionz’ “Kushed Up Brothers”
Signature sound: “I sound a lot like what I think a nosebleed would, or being 15 years old in December.”
Wishes for 2014: “A lot less gimmicks, a lot more emotion. I want things to sound like being a kid always.”

Location: Atlanta, GA
Age: 27
Gear: Logic, Omnisphere, Pro Tools
Notable beats: Migos’ “Hannah Montana,” Future’s “No Love,” a forthcoming Young Thug mixtape
Signature sound: “I take the melodic and the trap sound and mix them together. I like bells a lot. I don’t really like synths too much; I like organic sounds.”
Wishes for 2014: “I see it going back to people really rapping, and not just relying on that hard, trap sound. I’m trying to migrate out of that sound.”

From The Collection:

Beat Construction
Producers to Watch