There are only a select few that are from Arizona that you can say are “Industry Standard” in the hip hop and R&B game. ASH Music got to sit down recently with one them and when we say this man is a beast with production, we werent lying.
Mex Manny Beats was hidden away in ATL doing work, but recently moved back to his roots in AZ and has been conecting with some of the artists out here to show some love. Not many people are aware, but being from Glendale Arizona, he elevated his carrer when he moved out to ATL, and there has been no looking back.
With two chart topping Billboard hits, he has more then enough placements and work under his belt to compete with anyone on an industry level. One of them was on Rhianna‘s Unapologetic album with the hit song “Loveee Song” feat Future. In an interview for MTV News, Future spoke about his collaboration with Rihanna, “They wanted a more uptempo record, so I sent four or five records, and I left the last record. It was more like a ballad, and I left it.” He further revealed that the original title of the song was “Love & Affection”, however, Rihanna’s mentor Jay-Z changed it to “Love Song” and added two additional ‘e’s becoming “Loveee Song”.
He came with that super producer status again with the Wale “Bad” remix feat Rhianna. This song has been 21 on the Billboard Hot 100 and also as high as #5 on the Billboard R&B and Hip Hop charts. When we say Platinum status, I told you we werent lying. Our very own ASH Music artist Big Haps will have some of his production on his upcoming album as well. Please check out the interview and music below!
ASH Music: How long have you been making beats?
Mex Manny: 20 Years
ASH Music: Before you made beats, did you play any instruments?
Mex Manny: No, None at all.
ASH Music: wow, thats surprising. Any family history of musicians?
Mex Manny: None.
ASH Music:Were you born and raised in AZ?
Mex Manny: Straight from Grandel! Glendale AZ.
ASH Music:What major artists have you worked with?
Mex Manny: TI, Rhianna, Wale, Gucci Mane
ASH Music: Any other type of music you feel influenced by?
Mex Manny: All Music has influenced me. Some by meoldies and some by the rythm.
ASH Music: Whats your thought process when you make a beat?
Mex Manny: Coming up with something that excites and inspires me to write hooks.
ASH Music: Instruments, or drums first?
Mex Manny: Melody first
ASH Music: Did you ever rap?
Mex Manny: I began rapping a little before I started producing beats. My name was Kid Brown.
ASH Music: Ahhh, I see Kid Brown! Raza! haha. What do you think about the music scene in AZ compared to a music city like LA or ATL?
Mex Manny: It’s Dead, dead, dead. Lol, I wish I home was like ATL
ASH Music: Any favorite producer’s/artists?
Mex Manny: Neyo cause he is a tuff writter/artist and MikeWill and his camp because they dominated the air waves.
ASH Music: Any projects your workin on we can look forward to?
Mex Manny: Working on 2 Pistols mixtape thanks to my boy Lex Mill!
ASH Music:you prefer working with production stations/keyboards/mpcs or midi?
Mex Manny: Mac Book, Midi controller, VST’s and Cubase.
ASH Music:Do you like to sample, or are you more of a play it type of beatmaker?
Mex Manny: I do more from scratch but I like to sample.
ASH music: Finally, what are the 3 most important things you learned from the music business?
Mex Manny: Here it go, Entertainment Lawyer, Good relationships, and an Unlimited work ethic!
Interview from http://honorsocietyblog.com
Big Haps is a well-established Artist/Producer that was born and raised in Phoenix, AZ. He is the CEO of The Indie label ASH Music (Arizona Strong Hold Music). In June of 2009, he put out his first solo album titled, “122 Degreez” which you can purchase on ITunes, CDBaby, Napster, Amazon and listen to online everywhere. He also produced and published Playaz Inc’s album, “The First Super” under ASH Music. In The summer of 2010 ASH Music dropped 7 projects including Big Haps “Wide Body”. This album shows a different side of Big Haps which will display his versatility in hip hop today. Big Haps was also nominated in 2010 for several categories in the http://www.phoenixhiphop.net awards. With this momentum, In Jan of 2011 Big Haps was recognized by local radio station Power 98.3 as a street heat artist. Shortly after he dropped the street album titled “Daddy WarBucks”. This album will display’s Big Haps and the progression in which his music has elevated him to. With the new “Throw Your AZ Up” Video and anthem on the album, Big Haps has been moving in a strong direction with his music. Big Haps also was nominated at the 2011 Southwest Urban Music Awards for “AZ Latin Grinder Of the Year”. Not letting anything get in his way, Big Haps has definitely been grinding in the Southwest! In 2012 Arizona Strong Hold Music opened up a recording studio in east Phoenix. Working with cliental and specializing in recording, mixing, graphics, photography and video. With Big Haps at the Realm, and signed artists The Crooks, ASH Music continues to be a factor in the hip hop game. With a body of mix tapes approaching and another album in the works, Big Haps and ASH Music is a power house that the Southwest region is starting to recognize. His attention to detail, work ethic, and ear for great music is what sets him apart from the rest. Check out more at http://www.azstrongholdmusic.com
-Who are your influences musically? “I have several. Being an old school cat, hip hop wise I’m down with Ice Cube, Cypress Hill, Brotha Lynch, E-40. That type of shit. But there are some new school folks making noise that I dig right now, Like Kendrick Lamar. As far as other music, I get down with any Old school funk like Ohio Players, George Clinton; I get down with oldies and artists like Brenton Woods.”
What is your favorite song you ever made and why? “Wow, that’s a good question. I have several that mean different things to me and that take me back to that time period of where I was in life when I wrote them. Being very honest, I don’t have just one favorite.”
What do you hope people get from listening to your music? “I hope they get me. I want people to understand and relate to the things I say and have been through. I also want people to grow with me and understand that life isnt just about the Trap or drinking or smoking. I have that type of music, but I also make shit for the ladies, and something to dance too.”
What do you think of the state of Hip Hop and R&B right now? “People are doing too much with no heart and soul. I think people are getting lazy and so are the executives and radio stations ears. I mean there are times when I can turn on the radio and really just shake my head. I have no clue how some of these tracks could even make it on the radio and make money. But that’s what it is…. We need to go back to the old school. Hip Hop and R&B go hand and hand. I think that coalition needs to remain strong. The market is also very much over saturated. I mean everybody is a rapper! You have to find your nitch in music period if that’s what your passion is. But it doesn’t always have to be in the spot light as a rapper. Think outside the box in this music game.”
Who would be in your dream collaboration and why? “I would have to say Ice Cube. I mean he is one of the forefathers of gangster rap, and OG in the game, and just the history involved. Man that would be dope to me.”
Where can people listen/get your music? “I have my website where you can download free music http://www.azstrongholdmusic.com or http://www.reverbnation.com/bighaps You can buy my album 122 Degreez on Apple Itunes, Amazon and Napster! Just google Big Haps!”
What projects and/or shows for you have coming up? “I have my newest project “Grand Canyon State Of Mind” coming out late this year. I have been focused on the business as of late and haven’t been doing too many local shows, but I have one coming up this month on the 13th and a few more in the works.”
BY: Jan-Michael Smith