There are few producers in the game as decorated as Virginia-born studio whiz Bink! Breaking into the game in the mid-to-late-1990s, Bink Dawg cut his teeth getting early placements with Blackstreet and working with the likes of Kurupt, U-God, Lil Cease and A+ as the decade wound to a close. But his early hustle caught the eye of the Roc-A-Fella head honchos, and the new millennium brought with it a slew of opportunities with the R-O-C—working on Jay Z's Roc La Familia: The Dynasty
and Beanie Sigel's The Truth
—as well as with high-profile spitters like Prodigy and Mystikal.
But it was his work on Jay Z's The Blueprint
that really pushed his star to a higher level; Bink! bookended the album with opener "The Ruler's Back" and album closer "Blueprint (Momma Loves Me)" as well as contributing "All I Need" right smack in the middle. From 2001 onward, his list of credits reads like a laundry list of legends and hitmakers—Fat Joe, Aaliyah, Diddy, Nate Dogg, Eve, Xzibit, Rick Ross, GZA, LL Cool J, Cassidy, Method Man and Redman, Kanye West, J. Cole, Game, Drake—the list goes on and on, and all along Bink! kept knocking out bangers.
Along the way, he picked up a hell of a story collection, from meeting Rick Ross while the Bawse was an unknown ghostwriter for Trina to personally delivering beats to Prodigy while P was in the hospital. "Prodigy was in the hospital; he goes back and forth [with the sickle cell anemia], and he was sick at the time," Bink! said during a recent phone conversation with XXL
. "So I drove to Queens, saw him at the hospital and gave him some music. It was dope—I was just honored to do that, to go that far to make sure he got the music."
But Bink! hasn't slowed down of late. He's the man behind the boards on Rick Ross' "Mafia Music III" off Rozay's sixth album Mastermind,
and he's got a crew of producers following in his footsteps under his Humble Monster umbrella. With Ross' Mastermind
set to debut at the top of the charts next week, XXL
spoke to Bink! about some of his most memorable moments in the studio over the years, from crafting hits with Xzibit to learning his trade with A+ to why working on The Blueprint
was unquestionably his favorite work of his career. —Dan Rys (@danrys)