If I said the name Michael Crawford, Most people in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area wouldn’t know who this guy is. But if I said Magnedo7, the producer, many hip hop heads would probably be like, “oh that’s the Kat who did that Eminem track with Havoc of Mobb Deep. Well, you are about to experience, through this interview, the one and only ”Magnedo7 also known as “Nedo;” a Grammy Award winning producer. In an interview with “Style & Beats TV for USL Magazine, Magnedo7 was asked about his inspiration and love for music, how he got on Eminem’s album “Recovery” and much, much more.
Is there a big difference between the producer Magnedo7 and Michael Crawford?
Yes, there’s a big different between Magnedo7, the producer, and Michael Crawford. Magnedo7 is a guy who is very aggressive and I take this business very seriously. I don’t like taking a decade to get things done. A lot of people know me for getting it done. Michael Crawford is more laid back, the family guy; taking care of my house and just enjoying life. So that’s the two differences between Magnedo7 and the real Michael Crawford.
How important is it, as a producer, to be able to play an instrument?
It’s very important for me to play the piano and know what I’m actually doing behind the piano. I think when “you do beats” and don’t really get a chance to learn everything else, you’re limited. No disrespect to all “the Beat-makers, “ I love what ya’ll do, but when you wanna really try to get further into your career, you gotta really know how to play a little bit, especially when you wanna get into film scoring. It takes some kinda skill to play the piano.
What is your biggest let down thus far, since you’ve been in the business?
I’m not gonna say the artist or the label’s name, but one big let-down for me was when a particular artist put a song out and I didn’t get paid for it. We went to the artist to get paid for the song and he said, “no, we ain’t paying for nothing. We make records; we break producers, so we don’t have to pay.” So, what I did was, I did a whole bunch of blogging and emailed everybody on that particular record I produced to generate more business. And although it was a big let down, it was still something I learned from, learned to live with and capitalize off the situation.
How did you get to work with Jim Jones?
The situation with Jim Jones came up when with the Christmas record “Mike Epps Present Dipset Christmas,” which I had a song placement. That brought me to the relationship with Jim on the “Pray For Rain” album. The record I did on that album was “Blow The Bank,” featuring Oshy Star. It was a third single, MTV picked it up and it did pretty well. “So that was my first big break as a producer.”
What did you do with your first big check?
Well, the money for that Jim Jones record was good. It was more along the lines of $5000. Around that time, that was pretty much the going rate for producers, $3500-$5000. It was good money, but of course I charge a lot more now; it was a good start.
So, what did you do with the $5000 you made from the Jim Jones record?
With that first little nice among of money, I think I bought a keyboard cause I’m all about the flip. I don’t believe in buying no whole bunch of clothes, jewelry, cars and all that kind of stuff. And $5000 ain’t nothing, you can’t buy a car, you know. I think I also bought a computer and something else which was real small. I think I spend $500 on shoes, if that, but I really didn’t buy a lot.
Who are some of your musical influences?
Me being the musical guy that I am, I have a whole bunch of musical influences. I’ll choose different artists from different musical genres because that’s how I make my sound. For hip-hop, I have to always go back to one of the originators, Slick Rick. I love how he told stories. He was animated in his raps, and he pushed the envelope for that time period. He was pretty dope. Progressing forward, Busta Rhymes, Leaders of The New School, and of course I respect a lot of the stuff that Jay (Jay-Z) does. In other genres, I love John Coltrane and Baum from 20th century music. I just like a whole bunch of influences at one time.
How important is spirituality in the music industry?
I thin it is very important to have some spiritual guidance and I’m definitely a devote Christian. You know, I’ll say that on camera. I also think that when you have difficult times, cause this business is like a roller-coaster; it’s ups and downs all the time. When you’re not hot for a season, you really have to have God or whatever you believe in to go to for that encouragement. You can’t half-step it and say you don’t believe in nothing because you’re shorting yourself. You really need something! My spiritual belief is very important as a producer and Michael Crawford, the husband.
How did you get your placement with Eminem?
The placement with Eminem was a big deal, a very big deal. I started working with my big brother, which is Havoc. Big ups to the infamous Mobb Deep! We kinda had a sit down and he was telling me if I was gonna be in this business (the music business) there were certain things you gotta do and certain people you had to go through. He really opened that door to let me get in good with the Shady/Aftermath Camp and Eminem. That’s pretty much how it happened, Havoc helped that situation; he helped a little bra out.
How did you and Big Von of Make It Happen Management link up?
Big Von and me linked up at an EMI conference last year and he was telling how he was looking for some other producer. We had a sit down, he listened to some of my beats and he was like “wow;” his exact words. When the time was right, I moved down to Atlanta and we’ve been working ever since. So, shouts out to Make It Happen Management!
What inspires you while you’re creating a record?
While I’m creating a record, it could be something small like a chord or a “synth” I’m running across, while I’m in the middle of making a beat. If I hear it, normally I’m out of my chair like “oh man, that’s crazy.” I’m like that if I’m in the studio working by myself or with somebody. If I’m by myself, it’s probably worst. Everything influences me and everything is that “It” thing and I’m like I need that in that beat.
What are some future projects you’re working on?
How can I say this without saying it? I know a lot of people are definitely expecting some Eminem stuff; maybe, maybe not. Shouts out to “Yea Yea” (Ice Cube). It’s gonna be a good year. Put its this way, since 2012, I have 25 placements, so you gonna have to look out for the albums that the placements are on. Listen to the radio.
I little birdie told me you’re doing some stuff with Ice Cube. So that new Friday movie, do you have some placements on that?
I mean, I’m thankful for good management and them being able to place some good stuff cause as a new producer, you go through management off and on. Shouts out to Big Von; “Yea, Yea!” I don’t know if “Strange Clouds” mean anything, but shouts out to everybody album that I’m gonna be on.
How do you give back?
I’m a good person and I like to share knowledge so people don’t make a lot of the mistakes I made. I know it sounds like a cliche, but how this business is, you really gotta have a mentor to be able to say “don’t do that cause you gonna get jacked.” So, I share my knowledge with anybody who asks. I cut deals on beats, everybody don’t get charged $20,000. I just like good people. If people respect me, I’ll look out for them; however I can help!
Contributors: Michael Crawford, Patrick Kelly and August Mapp
Thanks to Big Von of Make It Happen Management.
Copyright 2012 USL Magazine