As soon I as heard & recorded ILLA ILLS first couple bars, it immediately brought me back to old school 90s boom bap, which you really don’t hear on the radio today. So it got me excited to be part of this record.
The recording session only took a few hours. ILLA ILLS had his verses down solid but there wasn’t a hook yet. Manny Yes Yes happened to be sitting in on the session and from there they both were vibing out to the beat and exchanging ideas and bars to one another – a cool scene whenever you’re in the studio. And if I remember correctly, the hook. all of a sudden, came to Manny, he stepped into the booth and laid it down in one take. I played it back for them…ILLA and I looked at each other and had that “Thats it!” moment. The session was a wrap after that.
When it came to mixing it down, to be honest, because this track had such an early 90s feel to it, i didn’t want to mix it too much. I wanted it to have a retro feel; keeping the kick & snare prominent and have the sample in the background, and having ILLA ILLS & Manny Yes Yes’ vocals riding on top slightly. Besides the compressing & EQing that always has to be done, i didn’t put too much on their vocals. the main thing was to keep the “warm” & natural sound, staying away from “bright” or “wet” sound. i threw in a few delays where i thought would sound good, like in ILLA’s 2nd verse where he says “soul” & “life” – i’m especially proud of those! LOL!
If the artist(s) attacks the session and track the way they want to like ILLA and Manny did, there is really not much the engineer has to do except put the icing on the cake.