Producer Free Mind & His J Dilla Tribute Album (Interview)

Los Angeles producer Free Mind is best known for his contribution on Westside Gunn‘s album Hitler Wears Hermes 6. Now he is making a splash on the hip hop scene. One can hear his production with a slew of projects with some of the hottest spitters in the game. You’ll also see his name on the charts. It’s safe to say Free Mind’s soulful production is alluring and captivating hip hop masses. We had the pleasure of choppin’ it up with this hot new beat creator.



Who are your musical influences?

There are too many to name, but I’ll drop the names that immediately come to mind. J Dilla, 9th Wonder, Nottz, DJ Premier, Hi-Tek, Apollo Brown, Havoc of Mobb Deep, Madlib, Alchemist, RZA, DJ Khalil, and Kanye West. They’ve all influenced me in one way or another.

How long have you been making tracks?

I actually started in high school making beats on a Casio keyboard that my dad bought me, but it wasn’t until 2011 when I started to really take it seriously.

How did you develop your sound?

I developed my sound from listening to my parents’ music. My dad would play Marvin Gaye, The Isley Brothers, Johnny Taylor, The Temptations, Smokie Robinson, and Al Green all the time while my mom would play Randy Crawford and Anita Baker.

What’s your creative process?

My creative process depends on how I’m feeling, my inspiration, my thought process. I used to make 5 beats a day because I was motivated to get better. Now I make beats when I’m inspired by other things.

Who would you like to collaborate with?

I would like to work with any and everybody that loves hip-hop culture and can really rap.

What do you think of the evolution of technology as far as production?

I think it’s dope. Everything is easily accessible now because of technology. All you need is a computer and the right software and you’re good to go.

What inspired you to produce this tribute to hip hop legend, J Dilla?

I’ve always wanted to do a beat tape dedicated to Dilla. within the last 2 years, I dropped several tapes and I feel like I reached the point that I was trying to get to so I decided to do one last tape and it would be for the greatest beatmaker of all time. I’m paying homage to him, saying thank you for your contribution to hip-hop.

Tell us about upcoming projects and who is featured.

After ‘Donut of the Soul’, I’m releasing a compilation project. I have Definite Mass on there, Jamil Honesty, I.E. Moe, Josiah the Gift, Joe Mack, and this kid from Minnesota named Juice Lord who is phenomenal. I also have a project coming with O the Great later this year.

Special thanks to Free Mind for sharing his thoughts. We look forward to the upcoming compilation. In the meantime, Free Mind produced an amazing melodic Boom bap masterpiece in honor of hip hop Legend J Dilla titled Donut of the Soul. Every joint is a banger!

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