Having the opportunity to work with our next feature artist on the Magic beat box compilation lets just say we’re kinda of partial to most things this guys does so when we got wind that he had just released a follow up to his 2014’s boombap soulful infused gem of a record “Waves”, we jumped at the chance to catch up to Onjay and his new EP “Minuit”.
So Onjay whatz been up?
Hi, just busy producing! I’ve released several projects with sorted emcees and also released “WAVES” that I’m proud of.
Your latest “Minuit” is a great record! Can you tell us about it?
Well, thanks! I’ve thought ‘Minuit’ as a soundtrack to a night drive through the city. I wanted it to be smooth, deep, but also punchy. I’ve only used jazzy samples and the TR-808 drum machine to get a particular color on the whole project.
How did you start making beats, and what inspires you regularly?
I’ve always been attracted to creating music, even though I’ve never learned music theory. I think my revelation was the first Kanye West’s album came out, “College Dropout”. When I listened to it, I instantly became curious. I wanted to know how he got that soulful sound. Ever since then I’ve been interested in beatmaking, samples, and soul music in general.
What sort of sounds outside of hip hop influence you?
I listen to a lot of diverse music from soul to psych rock, from house music to funk. Old stuff, new stuff, no matter. This is part of my passion for sampling. Hip-hop music has no limits, you can capture anything you want and make it groove.
Whatz your creative process is like?
I usually start to search for samples. I listen to a lot of records, often on YouTube which is a fantastic library. For “Minuit”, I listened a lot of jazz from the 70’s, 80’s… Some smooth stuff, even music from old porn movies! Once I’ve found some inspiring notes, I slice it in my sampler. I start to make a beat, and then play with the sampled notes until I get something cool.
What does the future hold for Onjay?
I’m still working on new beats but I don’t have a particular project in mind for now. I’ve also teamed up with a friend to work on some house music tracks, hopefully that’ll inspire a new project.
Thanks for your time, in parting is there anything you’d like to bestow upon the young beatmakers of the world?
I would like to say it’s important to work on your own sound, to build your own identity in music. Just follow the trending sounds does not make sense to me. Look further, and build your own sound ! Thanks Whatiz, and peace to everyone. Go listen to “Minuit” !