Jimmy Dukes is starting to make his rounds in the music industry. Born and raised in Buffalo, New York. Jimmy has already had placements on several LOX projects, as well as solo projects for Sheek Louch, Styles P, Maffew Raggazino, and more. Today, we sat down with Jimmy to discuss his roots in hip hop.
This is a big time for Buffalo with you and the Griselda movement. How do you feel about Buffalo’s hip hop scene?
Yea, those guys are a big deal to the city. Buffalo is more known for Rick James and Brian McKnight, so it’s great to finally see some hip hop acts get some shine in the hometown. It’s very inspiring to see the progress, and hopefully there’s more to come. We have some great artists here.
In the last few years, you’ve been on The LOX’s last two projects, Styles P’s, and Sheek’s solo projects. How did this come about?
This all came through my manager Smiley. He’s been close with The LOX for a while now. And when he heard my music online, he hit me up. We’ve been rolling from there.
What was it like the first time you met them [The LOX]?
It was cool. I met them after my first placement on they mixtape called “The Trinity (3rd Sermon)”. I had a track called “Product” with L-Biz, who is another artist out of Buffalo; super talented btw. But yea, they had an album release party so we drove to Yonkers and met them at the studio. Cool dudes. I was also on the Styles P’s album that got leaked, so he let me hear a few joints off that. Sheek was mad cool. And I finally caught up with Kiss right before he performed at the party.
What is your dream collaboration?
Of course a Jay-Z placement would be crazy lol. But I enjoy a lot of artists. It would be too many to name right now. Maybe Andre 3000?
As a producer, what was the joint that made you say, “Yo, I wanna do this”?
It’s between Jay-Z’s “This Cant Be Life” and “You, Me, Him and Her”. “The Dynasty” album changed my life, and is it’s the moment where I started reading and searching for credits.
What did you do when you first got a major placement?
Nothing crazy. Just went right back in the lab and started creating.
What producers were you influenced by?
Just Blaze (My personal favorite), Kanye West, The Heatmakerz, and Bink!. There are others, of course, but these 4 probably got the most rotation in my CD Player in high school. This was also around the time I learned about sampling and how making beats work. So yea, the Rocafella/Dipset movement was huge for me.
Buffalo is the birthplace of Rick James. How much of an impact has he played on the city, as far as music goes?
He basically put the city on the map musically. It’s a little hard to tell or speak on his impact fully because I wasn’t around for it. But his music will last forever.
Any upcoming projects you’d like to speak on?
Yea I got some stuff on Sheek’s new project, “Beastmode Vol. 1” and on the next LOX project. Not too sure of the official title. And I’m also working on a project with my man Writtens; another dope artist from Buffalo.
Which beat do you wish you made?
There is a lot of them. But I was just listening to “Lord Knows” off Drake’s “Take Care” album and I forgot how crazy that beat was. So imma go with that one for now.
Attention artists: If you’re interested and looking for some dope tracks to write to, Jimmy sells beats on his website: https://airbit.com/profile/JimmyDukes. He can also be reached on Instagram: @jimmydukes.