Queens’ own Artivist is a man trending up. After years of producing album cuts for Rome Streetz and dropping instrumentals on his Soundcloud, he has a number of projects lined up. Here he touches on his history in production, what he has accomplished so far and what he’s got lined up.
RD: You are 21 with a 5 year old SoundCloud page, how young were you when you first started to make beats?
Artivist: I started making beats when I was like 14 years old. Prior to that I always had a love for music. My older brother passed away when I was younger, he was a hip-hop head. I found some of his CDs years later. Reasonable Doubt specifically was the album that sparked some shit. This was like elementary school. I used to blast that album in the house and get lit when nobody was home, Performing and shit. After that I would always have my sister downloading music for me on Limewire, asking for everything from Wu-Tang to Tribe, to Masta Ace. I would say I was a student way before I was trying to mess with it.
RD: What program did you learn on, and how has that evolved to today?
Artivist: I taught myself how to make beats on GarageBand originally. Some people hate on it, it’s what I had available and I learned how to make it work. Some people don’t believe I still use it. I feel it doesn’t matter what you use, as long as you make that shit work & you’re able to achieve the sound you want. Right now along with GarageBand I use Pro Tools, an MPD, a turntable and records.
RD: It doesn’t take many listens of your work to know your a soul man. Who are some of your all time favorites?
Artivist: Yeah 70s music is my favorite, from soul and reggae, to psychedelic rock and funk. As far as soul goes, Isaac Hayes and Barry White are two of my favorite producers of all time. But Al Green, Marvin Gaye, The Stylistics, The Isley Brothers, Curtis Mayfield, Gil Scott Heron to name a few.
RD: You have a long-standing relationship with Rome Streetz, with multiple placements on many of his projects over the years. Talk to us a bit about that and what you guys got cookin up for this year.
Artivist: Yeah Rome is one the illest emcees. Met Rome when I was like 15. Uploaded some beats on YouTube, he reached out and we’ve been cooking ever since. I’ve worked with him enough to where I feel I could create beats catered to his style. We have an album dropping soon, Jewelry, it’s sounding crazy, really excited for people to hear it. Shoutout to Badinflunyce.
RD: The Cruise Tape featured some fly tunes that are perfect for doing just that in the whip. Any plans to do another one?
Artivist: Yeah I’ve received a bunch of requests to do another one, it’s coming soon.
RD: What would say your strongest quality is as a producer, and conversely what do you feel you could improve at?
Artivist: I would say my strongest quality as a producer is my ear, because I don’t just listen to rap. My ear for samples, along with quality control. I’m really my worst critic, so naturally I think I can improve at everything. I’m excited to learn and fuck with different programs and equipment. It’s only gonna get nastier, the most important thing for me will always be to make the music I wanna listen to though.
RD: If someone were to ask you to put them onto your music, what is the first song you pull up?
Artivist: I would probably play them my latest joints. My best and favorite work is all unreleased right now. If I had to choose though, it would be Gem Star Bars off Noise Kandy.
RD: Plans for the rest of 2019?
Artivist: I just want to drop music. I feel like I’ve been making beats for a while but this is the first year I’m really dropping music. I look forward to building with a bunch of artists and producers. Just making quality work. Jewelry is dropping – Rome Streetz x Artivist. I have a couple projects that have been in the works, one with Josiah The Gift from NJ. Another with Gin Rummy from Australia. Bunch of collaborations. I definitely wanna drop a producer project with some of my favorite rappers, it’s gonna be dope year.
RD: If you could work with any 5 artists that Artivist album, who would they be?
Artivist: Roc Marciano
Follow him on Twitter @TheArtivist_