TONE 444 Vol 6 - SOLDADO
This week London bred producer, Soldado got transparent with me about his love for music, advice for creatives thinking about getting into producing, and much more. Traveling back and forth between the UK and the U.S., the 24 year old has been producing for almost a decade and has credits with Larry June, Yung Gleesh, Migos, A$AP Ferg, Wiz Khalifa, Chevy Woods, the late Fredo Santana, and more.
1.) You keep a level of anonymity online and I’m so thankful you agreed to interview with us! ….Why so mysterious?!?!!
“I really liked the interview you guys did with Tiggi, so I figured why not. I was just posting music and I didn’t think anything of it, but as placements came in, there were more and more people asking who I am and where I’m from. They were coming for the mystery and staying for the music with the hopes that the mask may drop. I also think it’s cool to have a disconnect… I can still go to the shops. if I need to take a break from the music thing and do something personal, the two run parallel instead of being merged into one. One day they will merge as demand goes up, but it’s nice having that separation.”
2.) I would say you’re fairly young but have been
doing this for a long time. What got you started producing? And what keeps you going?
“At the high school I went to there was one other person from the same hometown as me. We would catch the bus back and it was a long bus ride. We would listen to music & one day he pulls out a laptop that had FL Studio and just started making beats on the bus. All the music I’m listening to, I’m picturing big studios and big equipment and here this guy is with just a laptop and Apple headphones. That was my first introduction, so I just went and got the software myself.
Summer of 2013, I stuck at it long enough to find my way around it. What keeps me going is passion for the music. I’m coming up on eight years into it. I still love making music. I still love listening to random stuff on my YouTube. I still have another YouTube that’s just for random algorithm things. It always throws the most random inspiration at me. I love seeing my peers have music with artists that I like. Music is intertwined into everyday life now. I do have ‘beat block,’ every now and then. It’s awful. Especially when you have a ton of opportunities to work on, but don’t love what you’re doing. Honestly, you just have to take a day, put the laptop away, go see a friend, and things typically go back to normal the next day.
3.) What’s some advice you have for producers just getting started?
“YouTube is the biggest resource now. I remember in 2013/2014 it was hard as hell to find the sounds. You had to know someone who had it. There were no Reddit communities for sounds and things. Nowadays, I think anyone could get good at it through online resources. Trying to reverse engineer your favorite songs will give you insight into the layers of a sound. I think anyone could get started. I could give my mom a laptop and some resources on YouTube and I’m sure she would come out cooking some beats. They would be Pakistani beats… but fire nonetheless. Collaborating with other producers is great too because you will come up with better sounds than you would’ve by yourself. The cycle doesn’t change much as you get better at the craft. My best advice is to get started now, actually.”
4.) What’s something you wish Americans understood more about British music/British culture?
“Culture wise - I need a few things to be understood:
1. Most of us don’t know what the fuck a crumpet is. When you guys talk about crumpets and tea. Tea?!! Yes. But, on my mother’s life I’ve never seen a crumpet. Anytime someone tries to do a British accent they always go for the tea and crumpets.
2. We do bring up the healthcare thing because that shit is terrible in America. Anytime someone tries to come for us it’s the golden bullet.
But… entertainment wise, America has it. Every time I think about moving out there, I see the news and I’m like… maybe I should just visit. As far as music goes, the UK is a lot more than just drill music. The R&B scene is undefeated. The Afro Beats scene is undefeated. There’s a lot more to the rap scene here than UK Drill. Knucks, is an artist who makes music on drill type beats, but they’re not the generic ‘stab stab kill kill’ lyrics people are used to. It’s a ton of storytelling and samples on it. Drill has evolved in the past few years and there’s so much more to it than what people are used to.
Well you just plugged Knucks. Lol
“Yes, I just think his music is fire and people should listen to it. Also, look out for the Baby Keem and Lil Uzi song that’s coming out at some point. 😈 There’s much more work going on behind the scenes.”
For more flavor like this, follow Soldado here.
Natalie W, The Sound Series