Oh the irony! French Montana appeared on The Breakfast Club yesterday to discuss life, the Wave God, Max B and his hit single “Unforgettable”. The one thing he also mentioned, was that he had no idea who produced the song, which was recently certified Platinum by the RIAA. I suppose he was “Forgettable”. Video is below. Skip to the 2:00 min mark for the producer question from Charlemagne.
Sonny Digital knew and took to twitter to make sure that the rest of us were aware of Toronto based producer, Jaegen. Sonny has been an outspoken advocate for Producer rights and respect. His recent dip into the artist side is due partly to the disrespect given to creators by performers. Many notable Producers have gone the Kanye route (Diamond D did it in the 90s and he did it well) or the Metroboomin route, picking up the mics, djing and curating their own vibes and creating their own movements.
Jaegen might be used to it, but the producer community is sick of it. Besides “Unforgettable”, Jaegen isn’t exactly a stranger in the musical world. He crafted tunes for Zayn, Lil Wayne, A-Boogie and Drake approved up and coming Canadian singer, and Mississauga native, Ramriddlz. Jaegen also has a healthy soundcloud following with plays in the tens of millions. After countless recent slights to the creators who craft the sounds for artists to capitalize off of, conversation among creators on figuring out how to recover lost respect is at an all-time high.
In the not too distant past, The J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League and Chance The Rapper exchanged some heated tweets in reference to payment or lack thereof for Chance’s breakout hit, ” No Problem”. Sonny chimed in as well and spoke of the need for Producers to get together and form a union.
Producers have become almost disposable in a microwave market of rapid fire releases, streams and youtube videos. Titles almost never mentioned beatsmiths or writers or engineers, who have simply become an afterthought in the musical process, despite their essential role. (Any acapella albums gone platinum lately? Legendary Engineer Young Guru also lamented the lack of recognition given the engineers and producers in today’s musical marketplace.
Serious question. Where is the best place for credits in 2017? I need my young engineers and producers to be recognized!— Young Guru (@Young_Guru) June 21, 2017
Who is at fault? Are artists and labels responsible for ensuring that Producers are properly recognized and compensated? We could write an entire novel on compensation alone. Are the behind the scenes creatives responsible for allowing their own value to be lowered? One thing is for certain. There are powerful players on all sides of this issue. To quote Ricky Rozay, “Can all Producers please get paid”? Shout to Black Metaphor, an [istandard] alum, on the production beneath that line. Stay tuned for the next episode of Producer Ball…. um I think you get where this is going.
Update: 4:47 PM ET, Fri August 4, 2017
The word must have gotten to French. The has in the article’s title is now a had. Last night he tweeted out a shoutout to MikeWill, Jaegen!!! and 1Mind Music, who also produced on the record. Some twitter folks felt it was too late and others were more forgiving. It remains to be seen if other artists will take notice and show Producers more love.