SIR JINX (PART 2)
2008) | Interview By:
Last week, Dubcnn brought you
Part 1 of our
exclusive interview with legendary west coast producer Sir Jinx, where we
talked about such things as how he hooked up with Ice Cube back in the day,
his relationship with west coast veteran Xzibit, the state of west coast
hip-hop, as well as other interesting topics. In part 2, Sir Jinx opens up the
interview by telling us how he and Xzibit initially connected up with each
other, tells us about making the classic 40 Dayz & 40 Nightz album, working
with Brother J from X-clan, and putting together the post-NWA classic record
Amerikkka's Most Wanted.
Interview was done by phone in May 2008
Questions Asked By:
Sir Jinx Gave Dubcnn.com A Shoutout! Check That
Read Part 1 of this Exclusive Interview:
Dubcnn: Well, let me jump back to how you hooked up with Xzibit. How did you
two first get together?
We were both attending a reunion party for Eazy-E, remembering his
passing, and we were outside because Tomica Wright, who inherited all of
Eazy’s stuff, she wouldn’t acknowledge us at the party. Ras Kass is the one
who introduced me to Xzibit because when someone tried to introduce her to us,
she didn’t really pay us no mind. So, that’s how we initially started talking.
We were both like ‘wow’, because you would think a person that was with Eazy-E
would be a little bit more knowledgeable to the people at her party. So we
just decided to get out of there, and from that point on, and he needed a DJ
at the time, so in the beginning it was for me to DJ for him. He had some good
things going on with his first record, At The Speed Of Life, and I came in
right after that. I came in at the end of that run, to where we started
working on “40 Dayz & 40 Nightz”.
Dubcnn: Tell me about making that album, since we’re talking about it.
That record was real dope! I took a lot of how we made Amerikkka’s Most Wanted
and applied a lot of the same techniques to make the record, as far as how we
developed the album, connected the album and how we made the album make sense
from the theory he was talking about and how it relates to rap, and how it
relates back to the album. The title and the actual songs are all pretty much
pre-rehearsed. We didn’t really shoot from the hip. It’s not like we went in
and just made any song, and then at the end of the day we picked from them.
We already knew what record needed to be where and where we wanted the album
to excel at certain parts. So, when we did that record, it was him beginning
being on his own, and getting with new management, dealing with the label,
with Steve Rifkind, and knowing how to deal with those different perks of
life. I remember telling him that instead of paying for a wardrobe in your
video, take the money and buy a chain. He was like ‘oh shit!’ and that’s when
he got that Xzibit gold & diamond chain.
Dubcnn: You’ve had a few spots on his albums after 40 Dayz, but why are you
not more heavily involved on his work?
Well, I see Xzibit everyday, so for me to race to get on his albums ain’t the
answer because Xzibit goes in the direction of what he thinks is dope.
Sometimes I don’t make the cut, and like I said earlier, if my beat is not
dope then take me off. It’s not like I don’t try, but sometimes his direction
is different. It’s like the Frankenstein situation because the shit that we
developed in the beginning he holds me to to this day. So that means that
nobody gets a free pass. There is no homie guilt as I alluded to earlier.
Dubcnn: I’m wondering why Cube & Xzibit never collaborated.
That’s what I’m trying to put together! Cube used this one beat in his show,
and I’ve actually done it over, and made it different and turned it into some
west coast shit now. It’s a track that I made with Xzibit in mind, but when it
turned into what it turned in to, I looked at it as a pitch for both of them!
The song sounds like The Wrong Nigga To Fuck With meets L.A.X. I told Cube’s
people that X is real eager to work with Cube, so hopefully that can happen. I
want Cube to do a song with Ice-T, too! I got a song for Ice-T, Cube, Snoop
Dogg and maybe E-40.
Dubcnn: That’d be dope fa sho! Now, I know you worked with Brother J from
X-Clan. Tell me about working with him.
Brother J is good guy! We did a song called Moleman on the Underground Scrolls
mixtape. Brother J is definitely a man before his time. If you look back,
Brother J is 30-something now, which means he was 17 or 18 around that time.
Now, you look at a person like Gil Scott Heron, a lot of the people wasn’t
into what he was into because of the time, and people was handing out so much
candy that nobody could even get any medicine. Brother J is a medicine giver.
When somebody blows out his candle, somebody’s going to figure him out and
realize that he is a different type of rapper. It may not be realized until
way after, like Gil Scott Heron, but that’s how rap music is sold; through
word of mouth.
When people like myself let people know what real rap is and tells you that
it’s tight. That’s how you know it’s tight, not going out and buying 15 CD’s
from Amoeba. It has to be handed down to the next person. Brother J is going
to be cracking forever because we’re going to pass it down. His music was
never sold from good marketing or good promotion. It wasn’t from that. It’s
going to take that same vehicle that made him be a star, it’s that word of
mouth. Sometimes, for you to find a shirt on sale, rather it was advertised on
sale, is better.
When I did a few songs on Amerikkka’s Most Wanted I had Brother J’s cassette
with me the whole time. So [*sings Grand Verbalizer what time is it?*] that
kind of formed Once Upon A Time In The Projects because that song had a
finger-snap in it. I loved the tambourine and the finger-snap. That did it for
me. I had a whole bunch of albums around me at that time. You know how
athletes look at dailies and footage of other teams?
I keep that around me like that. Whenever I’m making a record it’s going to
come from a few different angles. I’m going to study them angles in order for
you to get that feel, because we don’t know how to write music. The only thing
we know how to do is steal it. So at the point of knowing how to reformat that
kind of environment, you can tell a little of the Ice Cube record because it’s
political. The Ice Cube record was tow records: it was Chuck D and Eazy-E
mixed together. That was Amerikkka’s Most Wanted. A lot of them songs on
Amerikkka's Most Wanted were written for Eazy-E.
Dubcnn: I didn’t know that.
Every place where Cube said, ‘little boys and girls/they all love me/ come sit
on the lap/of I-C-E’ that was Eazy-E at first. When they broke up, he shook
them. He wanted to put the records out so fast before Eric could put them out.
Once Upon A Time was an Eazy track, Get Off My Dick And Tell Yo Bitch To Come
Here was an Eazy track, Gangsta’s Fairytale, and a few more were Eazy tracks.
The later songs like The Bomb, Endangered Species came and those songs were
made closer to the time we released the record. But, a lot of them songs were
written already, that’s why we could do the record in 2 months, February to
March. The record came out in April.
Dubcnn: Being family to Dre and running with Eazy and Cube, tell me, from
your perspective, about the moment in time when Cube left and made Amerikkka’s
I could’ve been more supportive in a Dr. Dre environment, but I couldn’t do
it, and I didn’t want to do it. I would rather not, and as you see I haven’t,
and I still feel that way because I see things differently. When somebody’s 6
feet vs. somebody 5’8 they see life differently. So me and Dre see life
differently. The way that he goes about things is just the way he goes about
things. When I go about things, I go about them differently. When we were back
in the NWA days, I was way younger than them. When they were doing their thing
I was probably 15 or 16. So at the point where they would accept my music, JJ
Fad wouldn’t even accept my music at that time.
So when Cube asked me if I wanted to go to New York, I was like ‘hell yea!’.
He didn’t ask if I wanted to come to New York and produce his record. That
conversation never happened. He said we were leaving in a couple of days, so I
grabbed my discs, my little clothes and went to New York. When I went there, I
went there to be more weight on the west coast vibe when we were doing the
record. I was the person that kept it neutral when we did the record. It
wasn’t no Hank Shocklee, it wasn’t no Keith Shocklee; there was none of that.
We got there and were damn near on our own. The only person that really
stepped up was Eric Sadler.
Eric Sadler was a genius! He’s the wiz! I go there and was ready to see Public
Enemy and all that, but Eric Sadler was the realest motherfucker! To everybody
else it was a job, but to Eric Sadler it was a hobby. Chuck was touring at
that time, and they was about to drop It Takes A nation at that time, so he
wasn’t even there. Flavor Flav didn’t care, so he wasn’t there.. Me and Flav
is friends, even to this day, so don’t get it wrong, and that’s how me and
Flav ended up doing that one song “I’m only out for one thing”. Only person
there was Eric Sadler! He told me that if I wanted to be a part of the music
industry that I was going to have to say more, because when you’re in the
studio at 19 and somebody say ‘does anybody have a dumb-ass comment?’ that’s
what it sounds like when you’re getting ready to talk. He’d tell me to say it
because it was a good idea and whatever.
From there, I did “Who’s The Mack” because that was their song. I changed it
to that Marvin Gaye track. From there, I took a track that I already had and
did Once Upon A Time, which was the second song that I worked on. And that was
my song, so you see how I pushed my ideas straight in to effect. I did Who’s
The Mack first, then I did Once Upon A Time In The Projects, and then I got
busy, let’s do The Bomb! You see how busy that song is! That’s the song I did
third. All this is me getting comfortable, and then all the songs started
adding in. The songs got more busy and busy, and then I did the Drive-By;
that’s when I was in the middle of the stage with my Michael Jackson glasses,
standing still for an hour. I was on my lid at that point! “Hey! I got an
idea, let’s make a fake drive-by!”
If you weren’t on top of your game, a nigga would’ve shot that shit out the
sky faster than them goddman planes in New York! I got that idea from that De
La Soul record that they did as a comic book. Maceo was my man! He was in New
York with us the whole time. It’s funny knowing who was actually there, in New
York. There were a lot of people there! They knew something was going to
happen. I just DMC a couple weeks ago, and DMC was so around it was almost
like you seeing one of your childhood friends, and then they start getting on
your nerves, like that commercial with Charles Barkley and Dwayne Wade
Dubcnn: Let me switch gears on you for a minute. How did that Death Row
situation come about?
Stay tuned for
Part 3 of this exclusive interview with Sir Jinx.
Sir Jinx Gave Dubcnn.com A Shoutout! Check That