I have been humbled to collab with K-Murdock(hip hop producer for PANACEA/for those not in the know)for an interview, by the way, K-Murdock IS the surprise contributor i was hinting at last month, so expect editorials/etc on subjects of his choice from time to time! Again, thanks for your time to do this K.
goodwill: what concepts (record wise) have you thought about or want to still do but have not yet? why are concept records so praised but so far and few between?
k-murdock: Concept records to me are a challenge and make the music-creation process have a purpose, personally myself and Panacea are done with making albums for album sake, music should be fun but still challenging so that when u complete your purpose or bring the concept to life, u feel accomplished ya know. my mood muzik series has been the outlet for concepts for me. i just did volume 2 which features ALL piano-laden beats and it came up fresh. I wanna do more concepts based off instruments and sounds like jazz,electro, etc… so i got some stuff in the works.
goodwill: some of my favorite artists are, prince paul, aesop rock, lateef the truth speaker, bahamadia and gift of gab, who in hip hop really “does it for you”? and if no one in hip hop then WHO really gets your mind thinking and reacting and searching for more output from that person or group?
k-murdock: U mention Prince Paul and he and De la really brought the elements of concepts to hip-hop music with 3 feet high and de la soul is dead, i have had the pleasure of chatting with him, he’s a cool cat, one of my favs for that reason. the artist who really make me wanna make music are Q-tip and Tribe as well as De La. I still listen to vintage Roots and Outkast. and u mentioned Bahamadia, she is so dope, and a very great person to interview as she has been around for years and dealt with the dark side of the business! my fav new cats are Blu and tanya morgan.
goodwill: who are some people that influenced you to get into music and anime(both) and who(acts/movies/series’) keeps you coming back for more and why?
k-murdock: As far as anime, i used to buy anything that Streamline Pictures produced (Aikra, Vampire hunter D, Fist of the North Star, etc). Now, i am all about the Shonen Jump series like Bleach and Naruto. I also love Hiyao Miyazaki movies, the look and imagination used in them are very inspiring to me. i wish there were more fusions of hip-hop and anime like in the series Samurai Champloo, so i’m hoping i can be the guy to help bridge the gap or at least try.
goodwill: can you break down the new record you guys have coming out the summer? pianorama (your solo) and the new panacea record? (like a who what where and why thing)
k-murdock: Piano-rama is the 2nd record in my conceptual “Mood Muzik” series. the first was based on the Seasons and got great feedback, i actually had a deal on the table in Japan for it but the label faded out, but i recently got another one with River City Music in Japan for Piano-rama and now am looking for a label for it state-side or i’ll release it myself by end of summer. the record features a lot of up and coming emcees, singers from around the US and even my man the ParanormL from Japan.
As for the new Panacea record, “The 12 Step Program”, it’ll be out this fall on a label to be named later, lol as we are still shopping it but its gonna be a concept record like our 2007 release, “The Scenic Route”, and its coming out DOPE, i’m mixing it as we speak and we also got another album that will feature unreleased songs that didn’t make out other albums as well as collabos and remixes we have done, so listen out for that too this summer, we been busy 🙂
goodwill: when you make a record do you make lots of beats and then pick and choose what to use for topics? what is the process, you know some people make beats around bars(and then revise he bars) and some people write bars around beats, how did you two approach the records you’ve made?
k-murdock: The more albums we make, the more picky Raw P is with what makes it, when started out, it was like the first 13 songs we made, we used 12 now for the last album we been pickier cuz it has to fit a certain vibe and aesthetic ya know. and once i make the beat and skeleton of the sequence, raw p write to is, then we record and i mix it/arrange it in post… and BAM, its a wrap! lol.
goodwill: if you could pick a time to live in and be creative, when would it be? who would you like to work with during that time, why is it that your enticed to do so, then, with whom and what exactly?
k-murdock: I like the present, but i wish i could be in that game Chrono Trigger where the heroes went back and forth through time to the same place to explore the world. if i went back in the past, i’d love to see the jazz-funk era, the music made then reminds me of all the fusion stuff now. just to sit in sessions with the likes of Bob Jame,s Ron Carter, Eric Gale, Hubert Laws, Billy Cobham in there CTI sessions, man that would be special.
goodwill: do you ever plan on linking up with anime producers and making a soundtrack for a movie? is there something in the works that you and all us listeners might look forward to?
k-murdock: I actually conceptualized my own anime story with Raw Poetic in a project called “The BEYONDER” that we are doing a mock-score/soundtrack for, and my goal is to get it eventually turned into a short AMV so i can say i have done an anime movie and i really wanna score a final fantasy type game using my hip-hop sound, cuz its never been done!
goodwill: there’s are time in life, where we pick different paths, and those paths completely change our life, can you share a few? be it a specific experience or domino effect of choices that led to a personality trait or coincidence that seems like the stars aligned so to speak.. that helped pave your road through where you roam today?
k-murdock: The biggest was probably deciding to pursue radio and music as my career once college ended. i was an English minor in school and radio prod. major but the safer gig seemed like writing and stuff and i even had my college professors encouraging me to follow my writing in grad school but i opted to go with my passion even though i knew it was a crazy business. i’m glad cuz i have seen firsthand some amazing things and even through all the BS, my resolve has never really waned cuz i love what i am doing even when it doesn’t love me back ,lol. most recently, my decision to leave my full-time gig at XM radio as a producer/engineer to do music full time was risky but again, i love it… and i had to do it while i had a chance so i don’t regret not doing it later ya know.
goodwill: i know you love writing and the freedom it can give, are there plans on a book or magazine ever, what would be a few things you’d love to write about? and what kind of effect would you hope to have, if any?
k-murdock: LOL, i wish… maybe once i get some more life up under my belt, cuz even though i could write about some amazing experiences i have had in my 30 years of living now, i still feel like some of the best times are ahead of me ya know. so in the meantime, i relegate my writing to these blogs and interviews 🙂
goodwill: ok, simply but possibly insightful, what is your favorite anime ever? and why?
k-murdock: WOW, hmm… fav series is Samurai Champloo for sure. Favorite anime movie is… Akira… it was the first i saw but i have watched that movie as i have gotten older and it makes more and more sense to me, the themes in it were very mature… like i watched it recently when i was doing Imanganation, and by the end of it, i really felt for Tetsuo and the idea of an underdog, it was heartfelt.
goodwill: what tools and techniques are in your arsenal for beat making? do you think you’ve at all limited your self due to the listeners expectations or politics of it all?
k-murdock: The HUB of my beat-making is my MPC 2000xl, i had it for 10 years since college. aside from records to sample, the sounds and synths i use are from various VST analog-emulators. i also love sampling video-games and re-flipping them! and as far as limiting myself, i don’t think so, i usually try and switch up my sounds for every panacea album or rather expand my arsenal cuz when i notice my beats sounding too similar, its time to change it up so the audience wont think so too. i kinda pride myself on not having a sound by having a unique sound ya know!
goodwill: what do you imagine your life would have been like and what impact could you have made if you had decided to go to grad school for English instead of getting into music and radio?
k-murdock: I don’t know,i cant imagine cuz like ever since i got my heart and mind in sync to do music and radio, i was not thinking bout plan B, there was no plan b like the old redhead kingpin song, lol. i love writing too as evidenced by my lengthy blog posts but i know deep down i woulda been feeling some regret and angst about not ding music though!
goodwill: when it comes to video games have you been offered soundtrack or song contracts to anything that’s sparked your interest? if not, what kind of video game would you like to be involved in if any? do you write code at all?
k-murdock: like i mentioned before, i would love to score a final fantasy or epic adventure/rpg game just cuz thats what i grew up playing and still do, like i always laugh hen i compare my xbox 360 games to my friends… im the only one playing LAst Remnant or Star Ocean or Lost Odyssey. the other thing is most times when hip hop is in a game soundtrack its in a nba live or madden or tony hawk, i get mad that i don’t here more hip-hop in other genres, so i wanna be the guy to pop that cherry! hell, i always get people saying they think the panacea music is so fantasy based anyway that’s its a no-brainer, thus i’m waiting for my chance!
goodwill: as a laker fan myself, and with the nba finals coming up, do you follow basket ball at all and who are you pulling for if any? i personally think this years play offs have been the most enticing games to watch in a long time, chicago for bulls or the early cleveland vs orlando series(favorite)? what sports do you follow and who’s your team?
k-murdock: i been peepin the lakers and magic games this last week, i want the magic but the lakers or should i say KOBE is so focused. my sport is football… the NFL, i ma HUGE chicago bears fan so needless to say i hp e Jay Cutler was worth the trade, we’ll see…
goodwill: if “life” gave you a choice of something to change in the world, and one choice being not to change anything, what would you choose? and why
k-murdock: This is probably superficial or rather selfish in the grand scheme , but i would restore balance more to whats presented as “hip-hop” so that we can hear more “underground” music back on the radio like it was 10 years ago!
goodwill: do you ever go fishing? or anything exciting/relaxing that might seem left field for people to learn about you..?
k-murdock: not really, i do occasionally go hiking and stuff but that’s just so i don’t get cabin fever all day in the studio. my escapism, are my games and anime… or really hanging with family or friends! i lead a pretty boring life outside of my music but that’s the way i like and need it, lol!
goodwill: if you had 30 days to get 10 things you wanted to get done with any and all means of getting them done, what would it be? write a script? climb a mountain? participate in a peace corps. operation? (kinda like a “bucket list”? did you see that movie?)
k-murdock: Whoa, good question… i don’t know about 10 things but off the top this is what comes to mind…
Record as much music as i could and spend as much time with my loved ones and i would definitely make sure i told everyone i love that i love them before i passed…
goodwill: have you seen any epic movies in the last year? is there anything that’s coming out this summer that you’ll make sure to see in the theater?
k-murdock: i gotta see Transformers 2 and because i love anything with ninjas and samurai, the movie Ninja Assassin which drops later this year is a must see even if its so predictable as far as plot. also ,that CG movie “the 9” looks dope! i have seen Terminator and it was good though i couldn’t understand why the terminator robots had doo rags and clothes in the encampment scenes, like wtf?!? lol
goodwill: can you share something that you remember often or seldom that plays a role in shaping the decisions you make
k-murdock: i always think about the music i like and the way it inspired me to do what i do, even when i feel like we aren’t making strides, i remember that my reason for getting into this was from pure love and enjoyment. also, honestly, everyday is a blessing when u see some of the stuff happen on t.v. or firsthand, i am just grateful to be alive to try and effect change, its humbling.
goodwill: if you were “lost/ship wrecked” on an island, would you rather be alone or with a person or two?
k-murdock: As much as i like being alone, i thrive off others so definitely have to have company!
goodwill: some of my favorite musicians to listen to are Bessie smith, Billie holiday and Louis Armstrong, i can paint for hours listening to them, what kinda music if any do you vibe with and feel unlocks some sort of doorway to creativity and flow for your self?
k-murdock: I like a lot of smooth jazz, not kenny G, but bob james and earl klugh’s albums… or the music of greek keyboardist Vangelis, or even some smooth instrumental hip-hop from nujabes or nicolay. stuff without words is less distracting to me.
goodwill: finally, what would you like to be remembered for? and what can you do to make that a reality, maybe you already feel you’ve obtained it and just keep growing, but if you have goals that we might not pick up on, what are they?
k-murdock: when it is all said and done, i just wanna be respected by my peers and fans as someone who TRIED to make good music and for those who met me, i want them to say i TRIED to be a good person, as i whole heartedly believe in karma and individuality. what i did as far as my music and art is an extension of me, so even though some will never meet me personally, i want them to feel like through my music they had some insight to who i was and that i tried to be the best i could be while was here on Earth.
And i’m out…