Jeezy’s Longtime Engineer Tony Rey On The Making Of ‘Seen It All’
Behind The Boards: Tony Rey
Words Eric Diep
Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared in the October/November 2014 issue of XXL Magazine.
Jeezy’s hard-hitting anthems on his new album, Seen It All, sound so tight and crisp because of the work of his go-to engineer, Tony Rey. The 36-year-old Miami native got his start by attending Full Sail University’s recording arts program in 2000. Rey got a job teaching ProTools and advanced recording in 2002 at Full Sail after graduation, then left three years later to make his name in Atlanta’s bubbling rap scene. He was introduced to Jeezy through an industry connect soon after arriving in 2005, and began working with Da Snowman extensively beginning with 2005’s Let’s Get It: Thug Motivation 101. Now, the CTE World affiliate is back to add his Midas Touch to Jeezy’s fifth solo label LP.
XXL: Describe your engineering style.
Tony Rey: I might not be the best this or that, or the best mixer or the best producer. What I am the best at is being able to understand what the artist is trying to portray in their music and how it’s supposed to come across to the listener from the view of the artist. That’s one of the most important things when you have guys that work together a lot. It’s just being able to understand what they’re trying to deliver.
How long did it take to make Seen It All?
We went through three different stages of the album. But it’s funny because some of the core songs that stayed there were from way back. So 2012, end of 2011-type songs, some of them made it. That’s how you can see that it’s been a long process.
What’s the difference between mixtape Jeezy and album Jeezy?
Honestly, mixtape Jeezy is the same as album Jeezy. But as far as work ethic goes, I think he puts in as much work on any song that he touches, even a feature that he does for people. He really puts his full frontal effort. It’s gotta be dope.