Thursday, May 17, 2012

Beat Talk: D.I.V.

The Beat Yard recently reached out to rising Yonkers, New York based producer/rapper/engineer D.I.V.  for a one on one interview.  In this interview D.I.V. discusses his favorite beats, producers, pet peeves as an engineer and a gang of other interesting topics.  Read all about what this artist has to say below.

The Beat Yard:  In your own words who is D.I.V.?
D.I.V.:  D.I.V. is Destiny In Vision. I am history in the making.  Smooth, Raw and So New York.  I am a Giant G Boss.  I am classic but trendy, and that’s why I am timeless, but still relevant.

The Beat Yard:  What types of beats bring out the best in what you do?
D.I.V.:  Heavy drums and anything with soul.  The drums will compliment my voice, but the chords are what inspires me.  Anything that touches my soul is gon bring the best caliber from me.

The Beat Yard:  What beatmakers have you worked with in the past?
D.I.V.:  I have worked with Joey C, Jay Chef, Mike Diesel The Don, Ghetto Mozart, Ly1rkz, DJ Corbett, Rhythm J Beats, Swollen Drumz Productions, A.O., VTZ, Heavy Weight Beats, King Kong Productions.

The Beat Yard:  What beatmakers would you like to work with in the future?
D.I.V.:  I wanna work with Joey C!  Other than him: DJ Premier, RZA, Alchemist, Ryan Leslie, Swizz Beats, 9th Wonder, Kanye, Rick Rubin, Dr Dre, Just Blaze, Skrillex, Araab Music and I definitely wanna work with my homie Shy City.  He designed the cover to my latest mixtape The Vision’s The Foundation, he is real talented.

The Beat Yard:  Who are your top 5 favorite producers of all time?

D.I.V.:  In no order…Dr Dre, Alchemist, DJ Premier, Kanye West, and Swizz Beats.


The Beat Yard:  What are the 5 sickest beats you've ever heard?

D.I.V.:  "Phone Tap"- The Firm, Styles P & Pharoe Monch - "The Life", Wu Tang - "Cream", The Lox - "Money, Power, Respect", Black Rob - "Whoa". 


The Beat Yard:  What types of sounds do you enjoy hearing in beats the most?
D.I.V.:  Strings, Heavy Bass, Hard Snares, Guitar, and Piano.

The Beat Yard:  We see that you are also a recording engineer too, how did you get the skill? Did you go to school for it?
D.I.V.:  I became an engineer out of need, and in recording myself, I started to get a knack for it… I fell in love with audio over time and engineering definitely has a place in that.  I began interning at a studio in NYC and started to get nice with it.  I really learned out of just engineering thousand of sessions over the years.

The Beat Yard:  As an engineer, what are some of your pet peeves when recording other artists?
D.I.V.:  Honestly I hate it when an artist doesn’t know their material well enough… I am a busy man, I don’t need to be with you while you learn your own s***, and I know I'm getting paid, but let me enjoy what I'm doing and lets create more in that time, not just beat a dead horse… To me listening to a rapper record and they cant get it right is like someone slamming their head against a brick wall over and over again expecting to see if it falls over (lol). Then they only booked an hour or two and they expect to have two songs mixed and mastered and on a CD... Its ridiculous and amateur. I spend 10+ hours on some of my own mixes, and they expect that same quality… not gonna happen unless I get the right amount of bread. You can’t rush greatness bro… unless your great (lol). My brother Nuf Sed for example 1 takes almost everything… enabling me to focus on the song entirely, not just one small part… and it shows at the end.  That is a model artist as far as what I look for…­­­On the flip side, as an artist who has recorded in other peoples studios for features and such, I HATE engineers who don’t pay attention to the session… I went off on this one kid once, he was engineering the session and online shopping for tight ass Gothic clothing while we were tracking vocals… (SMFH!) So I started telling him what we needed done and he told me that HIS PET PEEVE was people telling him how to work… I told him my pet peeve was engineers looking at f***** lingerie instead of doing what we are paying them for (LOL). I can look back now and laugh, but at the time I was about to choke the s**t outta him!

The Beat Yard:  In your opinion, is it important for producers to track out each sound individually in their beats or could an artist get just as good results if it was two tracked (vocals on one track and the beat on one track)?
D.I.V.:  I ONLY record on tracked out beats. Aside from freestyles and promo tracks, but all my producers track out everything… The things I can do with track outs make the song sound like a different track completely sometimes… To anyone buying beats I will say this: IT IS WORTH EVERY PENNY!

The Beat Yard:  You also make beats yourself, how would you describe yourself as a beatmaker?
D.I.V.:  I am a casual beat maker right now.  I have no set format, I make beats out of pure inspiration and whenever it comes up.  I am more focused on rapping than beat making. However mostly all the tracks I do with Joey C I co-produce in one way or another. At the very least we sequence them together. As an artist its dope cuz I can have an idea in my head, or maybe a sample I wanna use, with a concept in mind and then go to Joey and we put it to life. It’s the dopest s**t ever.

The Beat Yard:  Have you ever made beats for other artists, if so, who?
D.I.V.:  Me and Joey just did a joint for Nuf Sed for his birthday. We sampled DEVO Enough Said… what a corny record, but the way we flipped and what he will do with it, that joints gonna be crazyyy!

The Beat Yard:  What do you use to make your beats?

D.I.V.:  We use turntables to sample records, Motif 6, MPC 2500, Fruity Loops for a lot of sequencing, Pro Tools, Proteus 2000.

The Beat Yard:  Do you sell any of your own beats?

D.I.V.:  We definitely have beats for sale! Hit us up @ for more info.

The Beat Yard:
  Do you buy beats from up and coming producers?
D.I.V.:  I have for a while now.  I still have unreleased material with producers I bought beats from, but currently our production is done in house with Joey and I don’t really budget outside of that. I am open to collabos all day, and I would love to do beats with established producers, primarily ones I listed above.

The Beat Yard:  What advice would you give beatmakers?

D.I.V.:  Personally I appreciate a producer with their own sound.  I cant stand when a producer says: “this is my Kanye style beat, this is my Premier style beat, this is my Lex Luger style beat” I would say to take all your influences and fuse them together to make you! So instead of having those three beats, id say take a Kanye type sample, with some Lex Luger drums and scratch a hook like Premier.  Now you got a style of music that no one is doing but you are still being true to your influences.  If you are an artist in any capacity, creativity should be the most important thing!

The Beat Yard:  Where do you see yourself in 5 years in the industry?
D.I.V.:  On tour, making great music and videos and just eating off what we love to do… I see my self working as an engineer, developing up and coming artists, producing, all while still being an incredible artist.

The Beat Yard:  Any last minute shout outs?

D.I.V.:  Any plugs, I would just ask for people to check my site:, check out our long list of work and please leave your feedback!  Any artists looking for quality mixing, mastering or production please don’t hesitate to reach out, and if you need an engineer in the tri-state, I am available for hire:

So O.D.
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