Interesting and exciting times on the music scene here in Ghana.
And I’m talking about the rappers. Or the controversies (Sarkodie went ballistic on the media on his latest Free Press).
That is not where my interest lies.
My excitement leans towards the men with the beats. The producers whose fingers and mind come in sync to craft those wonderful, danceable and catchy beats your favourite rappers/singers add their voices to and get you, the listener, all excited and joyous.
The role of the music producer (sound engineer) plays an integral part in the music making process and since the inception of hip life in 1994 till date; where it is earning stripes locally and internationally, the music producer has been a part of the history making. The producer’s role cannot be under-estimated.
Legendary producers such as DJ Rab (Plan Ben, Keep Your Eyes On The Road), Zapp Mallet (Sika Ba, Masan Aba), Hammer (Pae Mu Ka, Makola Kakwe), Baby Face (Akatesia, Kwadei), Jay Q (Sikeletele, Ahomka Wo Mu), Appietus, M3nsa (Men Sesa Da, If You Don’t Know) were/are at the front of the musical revolution. They were the brains behind some of the finest songs that hip life fans have ever heard. Their work ultimately paved the way for a new generation of beats makers/producers.
As hip life evolved, we witnessed the entry and rise of new producers with the likes of Jay So, KSN, EL (pre-azonto), DJ Juls, Richie, Kaywa and JMJ leading the pack. Some of these producers have had their creativity recognized by the industry by scooping various awards at the Ghana Music Awards.
Similar to how new trees sprout from old and dead ones, the producers well seem not be drying up anytime soon. Each epoch comes with the emergence of new producers who take over the reins and push the music boundaries to the next stage.
The new crop of producers on path to becoming legendary include KillBeatz (though an old guard, he became known a couple of years ago), Nshorna Muzik, Magnom Beats, Gefacci, Genius Selection, Dj Breezy, Laxio Beats, Lil’Shaker and Peeweezle.
Peeweezle, Laxio Beats and Dj Breezy, albeit new on the scene, seem to be giving the likes of KillBeatz, Lil’ Shaker and Magnom Beats a run for their money. KillBeatz Addison and Magnom appear to be the ‘reigning kings’ as things stands, churching out bangers each time. KillBeatz comes across as the producer who chooses who he wish to work with. He has kept a ‘close circle’, producing hit songs majorly for Sarkodie, R2Bees, Tiffany and Fuse ODG.
As those mentioned are enjoying their minutes of fame, there are a host of younger producers snapping at their feet, pushing very hard to get their names established on the music making scene. These young producers list include among others Young Fly (producer of M.anifest’s Someway Bi), Nel Magnum (resident producer for Mix Down Studios), Jedi (BBnZ), Slimbo and Mike Mills.
The competitive nature on the production scene is what makes it exciting as each knows their longevity and ability to stay afloat on the scene is as good as the works they put out. Possessing a larger pool of creative skills (production style) is an antidote to becoming a mere footnote instead of a whole chapter in the history of music making book.
Why and how some fast rising producers fizzle out of the game even before they had sat comfortably in their seat is something worth talking about later. And oh, how come there aren’t any known female producers on the scene yet?
Judging by the demand for music and the attractive nature of the industry, producers have their work cut out for them. As consumers of music, we’ll be here to enjoy the rhymes, wordplay of the artistes and most especially the banging beats that accompany the songs.
Written by @swayekidd