Tyga’s “Rack City” has likely blared through every speaker in practically any club that plays hip-hop bangers. But the YMCMB artist did not create the hit all by himself; fellow Californian DJ Mustard provided him the infectious beat. The budding 21-year-old producer has worked extensively with 2011 XXL Freshmen YG, providing most the production for his mixtapes Just Re’d Up and 4 Hunnid Degreez. For all that, Mustard is not limiting himself to only collaborating with artists from his coast. He has recently linked up with Meek Mill, Red Café and others, has things in the works with Jahlil Beats, plus has aspirations to work with Drake and Nicki Minaj. XXLMag.com caught up with Mustard to discuss his musical connection with Tyga and YG, a new group mixtape, ratchet music, the making of “Rack City” and more. —Christopher Minaya (@CM_3)
XXLMag.com: How did that come “Rack City” about?
DJ Mustard: I mean that record came about so quick. I was doing a beat for YG, and he was like, “Tyga just hit me up; he said send him some beats.” I’m like, “I don’t know what to send him.” He like, “Send him that.” I was like, “You sure?” He was like, “Yeah, send it.” So, I sent it to him on like a Tuesday or a Wednesday and like on Thursday it was out. It just blew up.
So, the record was originally for YG?
Yeah, it was originally for YG. YG is the type of person that, if you’re his friend, he gon’ help. He’s not like a hater or nothin’ like that like and be like, “Hey. Nah, don’t give this to him.” You know what I’m saying? He wasn’t thinking like, “Oh, this is gon’ be the last record he’s gon’ ever do.” We both didn’t think it was going to be as big as it is. It was like a good look.
Have you ever considered doing, a tape or project together, with you, YG and Tyga?
Yeah, it’s supposed to be coming soon. I can’t say no date or the time, but it’s for sure.
There’s another person involved on it too, a big rapper from the West Coast, too.
Is the fourth one Nipsey Hussle?
Yeah, it’s going to be crazy.
Tell me about some of your biggest records, besides “Rack City.”
A lot of the records that you like kind of hear that are poppin’ in the clubs, I did. Like, the “Snitches Ain’t…” record, Tyga and Nipsey, the “Patty Cake” record YG had, “I’m Good” record he got. Almost everything off 4 Hunnid Degreez.
How did you first link up with YG?
I met YG probably like five, six years ago when I was DJing clubs in L.A. I used to be heavy on the party scene in L.A., like DJing clubs, like every school event in L.A., every L.A. unified school. I did proms, everything. YG, he used to perform at these clubs and stuff like that, and one day we linked up through a mutual friend and when we linked up, we’ve just been cool ever since.
How would you describe your musical connection with YG?
We almost like best friends almost, so it’s like we can do a record in 10 minutes.
Talk about ratchet music. How would you describe it to those who are unfamiliar with it?
It’s basically like club music. It’s like really not being afraid to just have a good time. Like, the smartest girls, college girls, every race. Anybody can be ratchet. It’s just a certain type of music that brings the ratchetness out of you. Like that 808 and that snap, it just brings ratchet out of you, so it’s just like we just started calling it ratchet music.
Who would you deem as like the pioneers to ratchet music? You deem yourself and others or just others?
Me and YG. Tyga, too.
Did something inspire it, or was it just something that happened naturally throughout like working?
L.A. used to be a lot of gangbanging, and you couldn’t go to the clubs and stuff like that. So, I just wanted to make it to where you could go to the club and have a good time. Gangbangers, they ain’t worried about gangbanging no more because they’re worried about having a good time. So, I just made it to where everybody can have fun.
How much time you put in the studio? How many beats, on average, you do per week?
I work really hard. I go to the studio from like 8 at night to like 8 in the morning everyday. I probably got like a new batch of 250 and beats, since I’ve been home [in the last week].
Who’s been reaching out to you lately as far as artists and maybe producers who want to collaborate you and coproduce a record together?
Me and Jahlil Beats just hooked up like, probably like a week ago at this video shoot I did for YG. So, me and him will have something coming together soon. I just did a song for Meek Mill off of Dreamchasers 2 called “I’m Rollin.” It’s out. I did Bow Wow’s new single, “We In Da Club.” I did Red Café’s second single [“Game Over”]; it dropped recently.