Exclusive: A-Trak Plans "Dream Date" W/ Kid Sister, Strikes Gold In New Label
Sunday, Aug 31, 2008 12:30PM
Written By Danica Dow
He's a tour DJ turned label owner with a gang of big projects in the pipline. Here, A-Trak gives SOHH the details about working with Kanye West and Jay-Z and what he has planned for Kid Sister's debut LP.
About a year an a half a go, A-Trak linked up with fellow DJ Nick Catchdubs to launch Fools Gold, a label that would link all of the genres of music that they regularly spun in the club, hip-hop, electronic, house and Baltimore club. "There's this whole new generation of kids that go to these parties who are open to all of this kind of music together and there wasn't really a label that stood for all of that," A-Trak said.
The rappers signed to Fools Gold --Kid Sister and Kid Cudi-- exemplify this philosophy. "It's kind of a new take a new sound on rap without it being corny," said A-Trak. "When we mess with rap we do it on an angle that doesn't only appeal to the kids at our parties but to any hip-hop fan. I think it really transcends the scene that we're from."
A-Trak's main priority right now is Kid Sister's debut album, Dream Date, which is slated for an early November release. He says that the Kanye West laced lead single, "Pro Nails," is not indicative of the rest of the record. "I think a lot of people are going to be surprised with the fact that there's a bunch of raw hip-hop records on there," he said. "It's not all up tempo clubby stuff. I think a lot of people are going to be impressed with her growth also because when she made a lot of the records that people have heard by now, she was just starting to rap."
Jay-Z recently tapped A-Trak to music coordinate his "Heart of The City" Tour and Kanye West credits him for influencing the sound on his latest, platinum selling album, Graduation. "I was never shy to tell him when I thought something wasn't good or when he made some sort of comment or put out a freestyle that I thought wasn't up to his standard," he said. "I look up to him I think his standard of excellence is unparalleled in rap music."
His relationship with Kanye, gave A-Trak a chance to hear some of the beats that Ye produced for Jay-Z's upcoming Blueprint 3 album. "I've heard some of the beats without Jay on it so I know that [the ‘Jockin' Jay-Z'] beat is a little bit more minimal and just meant to have a direct effect when people hear it but the hook is just crazy," said A-Trak. "There's other songs that are deeper musically."
This June, A-Trak teamed up with Nike to release 45-minute piece of original music entitled Running Man: Nike+ Original Run and he recently hit the studio with super-producer Pharrell Williams.