Mike Dean Gives Nardwuar a Houston Rap History Lesson
Nardwuar interviews are always interesting because of the Canadian journalist's sometimes mind-boggling ability to obtain details about a subject prior to a sit-down. The Human Serviette recently had a one-on-one with Texas OG producer Mike Dean and opened up a wealth of knowledge about the early Houston rap scene.
Dean, now most known for his work with Kanye West, has been a staple on the H-Town hip-hop scene since the early days, working with fledgling Rap-A-Lot groups and others like Odd Squad, The 5th Ward Boyz, The 5th Ward Juveniles, The Def IV, The Def Squad, which predated Eric Sermon's crew, and or course The Getto Boys. "[The Getto Boys] are the base of Houston music, the base of really all Southern music, everything that they are doing now," he said.
These days, Dean is working heavy with the G.O.O.D. Music camp and various other A-list clientele including Madonna, Beyonce, Frank Ocean and The Weeknd. He has five Grammy awards for either producing or co-writing tracks with West. He famously mixed and mastered Jay Z and Kanye West's album Watch The Throne and also co-produced the track "Niggas In Paris."
He is currently executive producing 2016 XXL Freshman Desiigner's debut album. “He’s a lot more of an artist than you think he is. He’s not just some Future knockoff,” Dean said of the "Panda" rapper in a recent interview. “He talks like that — he sounds like he’s got Auto-Tune on his voice in real life. He talks like Future raps, which is weird."
Watch Dean break down the early Houston rap scene, above.
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