Article by Persiah Alcorn (@latinegras)
Meet Woody: the producer, the remix genius, the funny guy and the master plan thinker since 1997. A modern day Renaissance man who’s produced for Casey Veggies, Charles Hamilton and The Notorious B.I.G, well, kind of. What do Master P, Riff Raff, people watching and a mystery man named Tito have to do with Woody? Just wait and see.
JM: How would you describe yourself for those who don’t know you or your work?
Woody: I’m a music producer, but more importantly an artist. I have a passion for all types of music and art- it’s what keeps me living. I’m also an avid Golden State Warriors fan and I enjoy people watching at Venice Beach.
JM: When did it occur to you that music production was something you had to try?
Woody: Well, I have always played an instrument of some sort. My Dad plays guitar, my sister had a piano when we were growing up. I guess there was always something to tinker with. I wanted to start producing initially because I was rapping in high school and didn’t have any beats. I started making beats on a cheap Casio keyboard and a tape deck. Once I made a few tracks, I knew that I had something special.
JM: What song gave you your “big break”?
Woody: I don’t really have one song that gave me a “Big Break”. I did a few songs with Charles Hamilton that people were digging a few years ago; “Toy Story”, “MTV Cribs”, “All Alone.” I have a couple of awesome records with Casey Veggies, “30,000” and “Toe Tag”. Recently I’ve been doing remixes. People seem to be bumping my Biggie “Machine Gun Funk” remix pretty heavy.
JM: Speaking of remixes, I’m a huge fan of your Biggie “One More Chance” remix. What process do you go through when deciding what song to remix and how you’d like to flip the original song?
Woody: Thank you! Instead of doing a remix here and there, I decided to do remix albums. I did Kanye West, Biggie and now working on OutKast – remixing about 10 songs for each artist. It’s difficult to find acapellas, so I pretty much work with what I can find as far as choosing songs. For the creative process, I listen to the original and figure out the tempo. Put the acapella on and start with a snare drum or something percussive. Then I usually play around with different instruments and make a rough beat to the vocals. After I have something, my good friend Ross aka Soletrain plays some bass or guitar over what I have. At that point, I have enough instrumentation to create the remix, so it’s all editing slash polishing slash mixing from there. I finished the Kanye and Biggie re-mixtapes in like 2 weeks.
JM: You produced for a new female artist that’s been getting a lot of buzz, Raven Sorvino, can we expect more between you two?
Woody: Raven is special! We have a very organic chemistry, it’s really insane honestly [laughs]. When she was making “Playa Del Rey”, I had met with here in LA to throw her a beat or two for the project. I ended up producing like 5 records on there and mixing/mastering the whole thing. Yes, we’ve been making the coolest music lately! Her next project is due out in 2013.
JM: Are there any new artists that you’d like to work with?
Woody: Yup, I would love to work with Riff Raff and I’ve been a HUGE fan of Phantogram for a few years now.
JM: I’ve heard that name before. On Big Boi’s single “lines”, right?
Woody: Yeah! I’m stoked that Big Boi got Phantogram on his new album.
JM: We’ve talked about new artists, but is there any old artist you wished you could have worked with? Let’s say you had the chance to go back in time and become the in-house producer for one artist or a specific record label who would it be?
Woody: I’ve always, always, been a huge fan of No Limit Records. I guess I would want to have produced for all of those guys. Master P was and still is the man.
JM: What’s next for you? More music, more editing?
Woody: I’m working on this OutKast Remixtape due out in January, Raven’s next project, getting back in the studio with Casey Veggies and as always, working with a ton of artists. Can’t stop, won’t stop!
JM: Where can the people contact you?
Woody: Go to 125th and Lenox. Look around for a gentleman named Tito.
JM: Wait, Tito?
Woody: Tito. Tell him the secret word: Pajamas. You will be escorted to an underground hangout where you will have 2 options. Either fight for your life in a “to the death” grudge match with a large Samoan wrestler or visit my website, www.woodysproduce.com and hit the contact tab. The choice is yours!
JM: Oh wait! I almost forgot. Any uncensored advice for the future beat makers of America?
Woody: Learn everything you can about your craft. “Making Beats” is only half the battle, learn how to engineer and mix. The more you can manipulate sound, the better your stuff will sound.
Check out his “End of the World” EP in full below: