Rude Kid is one of the most respected and sought after producers in UK Hip-Hop & Grime. His career, whilsts by no means being guaranteed from the get go, was brought to fruition as the fruits of hard labour, perseverance and musical ingenuity. His near decade long partnership with Grime royalty and certified “Rebel with a cause” Ghetts, has resulted in some of the most ‘unfuckwithable’ records of our generation. One Take. Need i say more?
Have you ever been to Amsterdam. Do you have any fond memories here & can we get a Rude Kid show here once this shitty year is over?
Yer man i’ve been to Amsterdam twice before. The first time i went a mate of mine was over for some sort of car show and me and Geeneus from Rinse FM came and met him and went to some mad club that i think was called AIR. Then the second time i went with Giggs for his show at ADE which was a sick experience, straight after his show we all went to a Loco Dice rave that he was hosting. I’m actually coming back over for Eskimo Dance next year with Ghetts so it will be nice to get to spend a bit more time there. I just hope Eskimo Dance actually happens bro, thats all i can say.
What does your creative process look like in terms of production? Do you like to be left in your own space to you can experiment freely or do you find it helpful to have a full studio with everyone pitching in ideas?
I like to be alone man, when i make tunes i experiment with a lot of weird sounds from a wide variety of sources so if there were people listening in they would think ‘what is this guy doing?’ you know? Even when i go studio I go alone man, i don’t really take people with me because when I’m there, I’m there to work.
At the end of the day, if I’m the one paying for the studio time, I’m not there to play games and chill. I mean its still very chill but I feel like a lot of other people waste the opportunity that they’ve got in the studio just relaxing. Plus if i was to bring a lot of people I know its going to get to the point were everyone is silent or asleep because they’ve been listening to the same song for four hours haha. Having said that, I always make sure to show my tunes to my people to get there opinion, just not at that early fragile stage.
Your relationship with Ghetts has easily got to be one of the most consistent MC/Producer relationship in UK music. Every tune is a banger, has been for years. When did you guys first get introduced to each other and what is it about your guys relationship that has resulted in so many classic tunes.
I think we first met each other when i made ‘Sing for Me’, but way way before that we had actually bumped into each other at my youth center. He would come there to try and sell his CD’s of his first mixtape in like 2009 and he remembered me from those days when we did Sing for Me.
After that we didn’t work with each other in a minute until a few years later we did the EP 653 together and since then we’ve worked together all the time. People get it twisted a lot, we aren’t in the studio together 24/7, its just whenever we do work together its always sick! He has to work with lots of producers because he works so hard non stop.
Do you think you and Ghetts see music in a similar way? Is that why it always works because nothin gets lost in translation?
I think we both have our own distinct tastes and styles but he will now what sort of think I will like and I will know if I make something that he will love but that has just developed over time from being with each other in the studio, on stage and in the tour bus. He knows how I am and I know who he is. Then when it comes to performing, he is so good at what he does and I have so much experience DJing big festivals that its easy and its never rehearsed, our stage chemistry is just very natural.
Moving on to the tune of the hour, Mozambique is an incredible record, was there a particular sample that started that off, how did it come into fruition?
When I made that melody I thought it just sounded like something that nobody had ever used before. Then how the Moonchild Sanelly thing came about was that Ghetts originally had a different chorus on the record that he had done himself. Then I was on my way to the barbers when Ghetts called me and said ‘listen to this but with an open mind’ and as soon as I heard it I knew it was so sick and so unique. I sent it to my cousins and they were instantly singing the ‘I DONT KNOW BRO! I DONT KNOW BRO!’.
That tune actually came about because I wanted Ghetts on this other tune I was making called Limbo. It was a One Take kind of tune and he said he wasn’t looking for that kind of style at that moment, so we started flicking through bare tunes. When I showed him Mozambique it wasn’t even finished, it was just labeled as a number on my hardrive. He vocalled it and it sounded mad. Because I hadn’t named it yet we started just referring to it as ‘The Mozabique Tune’ and the name stuck.
Going back to the early days of your career, how much fun was it to be present at the start of pirate radio grime culture? Did it feel special at the time and do you miss it now the genre is mainstream music?
I miss it a lot man! I was too young to actually get to go and be on any pirate stations but when I was growing up it was all I was listening too. Running back from school to try and find a tape to record a Nasty Crew session and that would be all I would listen too that week or month or however long it was until I got a new tape off someone.
Those sets inspired me a lot because I was always listening to the beats and wondered how do I make that. I never knew until someone showed me Fruity Loops, which is still the DAW I’m using to this day. I’m actually still using like Fruit Loops 10 and I think they are up to FL 20 now haha. But it would be safe to say without Pirate Radio I would not be making tunes at all.
Have you ever had on of those pinch yourself moments where you’ve been in the studio with someone that you were always a fan of and been mind blown that your in the position that your in?
Not really man because it was a gradual process. Its not like i was making tunes and then next day I was in the studio with Wiley. I think i just got used to it to the point were its just the norm. I definitely used to get so gassed when people would shout me to come work with them or whenever I heard my tune on the radio and it still mad to me now that I host the radio show that I used to listen to as a kid.
Is there a particular piece of advise you would give yourself if you could go back before you entered the music industry?
Do you know what, I don think i would tell myself anything. Everything I’ve learnt has only happened because of the mistakes I’ve made. If I spoiled the journey for myself then it wouldn’t have turned out this way. Nobody ever taught me how to make beats bro, I learnt myself. I think that’s why I was able to develop my own sound because just had to figure it out for myself. Now someone knows when I make a tune because it sounds like a Rude Kid tune.
I dont feel like I’ve achieved anything yet man, even when people say like ‘oh you’ve made it!’, i cant have that attitude about myself otherwise there wont be that next Mozambique or that next Novocain.
Is there a producer of any genre of music that you would love to sit down in a studio with and learn from?
You know I would love to sit down with like Han Zimmer. I would love to know what is going through his head and what his approach to the music is you know? I think that would be amazing.
We’ve pretty much talked through all my questions man, but the last thing I would love to know is, is there a project that you look back on with extreme pride because of the quality of the work that you created?
I think for me it has to be 653 with Ghetts because that totally changed my life and I think it changed his too. When that broke it was such a massive change for me. I made it at a very low point for me career wise and it totally flipped the trajectory for me. I really enjoyed the process of making it to and its just a classic record that I’m very proud of till this day.
It was hard work and at the time I felt like I hadn’t worked hard in a minute because it was during a period of my life where I set myself 2 yeas to make this music thing work or quit and move on. Right at the end of the 2 years in 2014 we made 653 and everything changed.
RUDE KIDS 3 CONCERTS OF ANYONE IN HISTORY:
- BOB MARLEY
- MICHAL JACKSON
- SPICE GIRLS
2&6 – Smokinggurb – Where do you get your initial point of inspiration from? Do you like to have a clear cut idea of what the final piece is going to look like before you begin or is it a process of experimentation?
THIS IS A 2&6 INTERVIEW WITH: For the uninitiated, who makes up Blackcrown, where are you guys from and how long have you guys been creating together? SO BLACKCROWN IS MADE UP OF 100K-WING, TINY GODFATHER AND MYSELF J- WING. WE ARE ALL FROM WEST LONDON, AND WE HAVE BEING MAKING MUSIC TOGETHER SINCE 2007. … Continue reading Interview: BLACKCROWN – WESTWAY, BOAT PARTIES ON THE THAMES & HOW UK GRIME HAS CHANGED
Interview: Kathy Iandoli -Author of ‘God save The Queens: Women of Hip-Hop’ on The role of women in hip-hop
In 2017 Princess Nokia dropped the following line: My little titties and my phat belly (That girl is a tomboy) which repeats in the chorus of the song ‘Tomboy’. That line shook me up because I never heard someone rapping about something that is not the stereotype of femininity. Listening to that song for the first time felt freeing, because it gave me hope that society might be ready to step over stereotyping assumptions about being a woman and we are hearing it from a female voice in hip-hop as well, though she doesn’t specifically identify as female only.