While giving advice to aspiring producers on site for the All American Music Conference at Webster Hall in New York City on Saturday (August 4), Bangladesh told XXL that the secret to his success is always finding a way to reinvent himself. He believes he does that better than most producers in the rap game—especially Swizz Beatz.
“I don’t think Swizz is relevant,” Bangladesh told XXL. “I’m keeping it 100.”
Fans can easily argue that Swizz is as relevant as ever—from producing “Summer on Smash” for Nas’ Life Is Good—he later appeared at the 2012 ESPN ESPYs with God’s Son—to producing “Throw It Away” off Slaughterhouse’s upcoming LP, Welcome to: Our House. Let’s not forget his omnipresent Reebok campaigns. Yet, Bangladesh doesn’t feel it.
“I think there’s a difference between relevance and musical relevance,” he says. “You married a lady that’s poppin’ [Alicia Keys], you know it’ll give you a lot of relevance, but you gotta make hits. Ain’t no hits. Are you relevant for the craft you’re doing or the life you live as far as the decisions you make?
“The relevance is in being youthful,” the outspoken producer added. “Still being in-the-know. I have a 15-year-old son so they think we’re brothers and I put him on to stuff. You know, I’m 34 but people tell me I look 23. He still look to me for information. Usually, it’s the opposite; usually the parents are lame or too old to understand or whatever. Just the way I feel. I got so much more time.”
With over a decade of producing in the rap game, Bangladesh still believes that his best years are in front of him.
“I be thinking about when I’m 50 and I still can make a beat,” he said. “I don’t feel like I’m old. I don’t feel like I don’t know what’s going on. I’m still fashionable. I’m still putting people onto the next thing. So people look at me like the inspiration.”—Chanel Clark