When asked whether he liked beat making or rapping better, the producer/emcee took about a second to answer, “I like producing more,” the former Odd Future member said. “I’m not even gonna lie cause I make a lot of songs and a lot more beats so I like producing more.”
Assimilating an already impressive archive of collaborations including Dom Kennedy, Curren$y, Mac Miller and Tyler, the Creator, DeShay’s top associations haven’t been on his projects, they’ve been on theirs.
With a strange range of childhood Hip Hop influences from MF DOOM to Lil Wayne, Q-Tip to Kanye West, BrandUn DeShay is striving to improve as an “Achiever” and will continue to work overtime. DeShay has the perfect mix of old-head insight and young artist freshness which makes him not only interesting but unique as well.
DXnext talked to BrandUn DeShay about getting into Hip Hop, future marquee collaborations, producing and emceeing, Odd Future, and his goals as an artist.
Getting into Hip Hop Music: M”y father played Hip Hop music when I was coming up and he really liked N.W.A. and Scarface and those kind of acts and that’s really how I got into it. Just hearing my father playing those when I was young. I wasn’t into it into it then but like that’s how I got introduced to Hip Hop.”
On Producing For Some of The Biggest Names In Hip Hop: “I’ve definitely been blessed to have an opportunity to work with them early on in my career. I didn’t have an intermediate phase like as soon as I was making beats, I started talking with cats that’s popping out like Casey [Veggies] was one of the first people I ever gave a beat to and you see what Casey Veggies is doing now and working with Tyler, [The Creator] and [Odd Future] and working with Dom [Kennedy] after that, I just got really blessed to have an ill streak of cats so that’s really all that it’s been just getting an opportunity and God gave me a dope talent and I put it to work so I’ve just been really grateful for it. Every time I do it, I’m just like, ‘Yes, I just did another dope track for somebody else who’s dope.'”
“Riding Roun Town” by BrandUn DeShay and Casey Veggies
On The Balance of Producing For Other Artists While Producing For Self: “I would say really the hardest part is balancing time-wise. I definitely don’t have time to make beats like I used to. I used to make one beat a day. If you look at my computer, I have like over 5,000 beats just chillin’ from days I didn’t go in but lately, as far as the artist side, I’ve been devoting more time to that too and just thinking about what I should do next and calling people and playing a lot of different roles so I would say every moment that I’m not producing, I’m working on the artistry craft and when I’m not on artistry, I’m vice versa. I really try to balance the two like back-and-fourth. It’s not easy but it’s more of a time thing.”
Preference Between Producing And Emceeing: “I like producing more, I’m not even gonna lie ’cause I make a lot of songs and a lot more beats so I like producing more just because music is nothing without the music just the audio and the song, you need the beats so that’s the most important so I put more into that and I enjoy that a lot more and the words really do come from that, they come from the music, so yeah I like production a lot more.”
On Being In The Studio With The Emcee You’re Producing For: “If you’re in the studio with somebody that’s like loyalty man. Music is love. A relationship is a lot more effective when you’re right there. Long distance relationships you know that’s when dudes be cheatin’ because you can’t see them, like you want to post up but you can’t but if they’re right there with you, you’ve got way more loyalty to that person and it’s just like any relationship so when you send in beats or whether you’re Skype producing you’re like, “Alright that’s nice and all,” but you really got to be there for real for real to get that emotion side of the relationship other-wise it’s just like you said, straight up sending tracks and going back and fourth.”
On the Odd Future Fallout: “It was cool. I wouldn’t have worked with them if I hadn’t have liked them but as people you know there’s obviously change and the mindsets and the music and the sound itself changes and you’ve just got to expand out and try some different things. We expanded out and tried different things and as a people, we’re all trying different things to grow as people and that’s where we are now.”
On The MF DOOM Reference In The Song “Ur Fresh”: “Yeah coming up he was one of my favorite rappers and is still one of my favorite rappers like his old material is so freaking good like man I’m just really into [MF] DOOM, man. There are so many songs that I can recite from start to finish. That’s just what I listened to coming up like when I rap, I don’t write my lyrics so I just zone and anything is liable to come out of my mouth whether it be something extremely offensive or something that somebody else said or something that someone just said like, ‘Damn, I can’t believe you just said that to start provoking shit like that.’ So yeah that’s really where that came from just straight inspiration. I must have just said some words and made it click like MF DOOM and just dropped that shit. I do that shit a lot actually.”
On “Achievers”: “‘Achievers’ is just like my genre, my style of music because I fell like it’s for anybody that has a goal and wants to achieve that no matter what it is. If it’s like getting with a cutie you saw at work or it’s doing your homework or something or some shit or if it’s like making the illest beats or if it’s just passing this class or whatever it is you’re trying to do. It’s just music to let you know that I’ve been doing a lot of that same shit. I’ve been there before and this is just how you can see that to keep a positive mindset and just how to carry that out.”
On Hopeful Future Collaborations: “At the moment I would say, well I want to work with a lot of people like too many to even name but specifically someone that I’ve actually that I’m avidly working towards realistically is Diggy [Simmons]. I’ve been a fan of his work since he started dropping his mixtapes and I think he’s got a lot of potential and I’m in cahoots with his manager and we’re talking and we’re trying to find something that I can do for him that will really take him to the next level. I want to be a real influential part in his career. I don’t want to just give him beats just to give him beats so that’s what I want to brand a relationship with. I would love to hear a BrandUn DeShay produced track wit Diggy Simmons on the radio sometime very soon.”
On The Direction of Hip Hop: “I’ve been asked that before and I never really know how to answer that for real for real but I just think there’s so much more going in being versatile I guess you could say because the internet has let a lot of people shine that couldn’t have shined before because you can have someone on YouTube where your everyday Joe Shmo can put something up and get how many views based on saying the right thing so I think it’s just going towards being more open to all kinds of people like I wouldn’t be surprised if a 40-year old rapper that came out of no where and popped up onto the scene in five or 10 years or the first gay rapper or something like that. I wouldn’t be surprised at all. I feel like you can’t help it right now to be accepting of some shit because if the mainstream industry don’t like that shit and care nothing about it, it doesn’t matter cause the Internet, you can find a bunch of people that are about that so that’s where it’s going, more versatility and all types of shit coming out man. I don’t know what’s coming after, the world going to have to end or something because it’s going to hit it’s peak eventually [laughing] you know?”
On His Main Goal As A Hip Hop Artist: “I want to make the best music possible. I wanna know that I’ve actually hit my peak of learning and my peak of exposure and my peak of influence. I wanna know that I’ve done my best at everything I’m doing and never be lazy at no point in time and no one can ever say that and keep a straight face, that’s what I want to be known for. I wanna be the best that I can possibly be.”