How did you get started? Tell us your story!
I go by Ballin Bari. I’m a producer from Norfolk, Virginia. I started making beats my freshman year in high school back around 2003-2004. A friend of mine introduced me to FL Studio and I’ve been making beats since then. What is your experience in the music industry? Do you have any formal training or schooling? If not, are you self-taught and how did you learn your craft? What is your learning style? What are your favorite educational resources (ex. college, Youtube, etc.)?
I don’t really have any experience in the music industry. No schooling or training neither. I’m self-taught. Practiced everyday using the demo version of Fruity Loops until my uncle purchased a copy of the real version for me. This might sound strange but I don’t have any educational resources when it comes to producing tracks. Collaborating with other producers and learning from them helped me with my skills as well.
What are some credits and achievements that you have? Who have you worked with? Who have you collaborated with?
I’ve been fortunate enough to have one of my beats used by XXL magazine for the 2019 Freshman Class. I haven’t worked with any mainstream artists but I have a project dropping with another upcoming artist named Legendary DaPoet dropping this summer.
Who are your biggest influences growing up and why? Who do you like to listen to now and why? Who’s on your playlist right now?
My biggest musical influence growing up was Cash Money Records. Mannie Fresh & The Neptunes made me want to be a producer. Right now, I listen to a lot of Payroll Giovanni. He’s my favorite artist right now. His sound is different from every other artist in the industry. To be honest, I listen to a lot of music from the 90s and 2000s like Jay-Z, 2 Pac, Nas, Mobb Deep, Biggie, Dipset etc. On my playlist right now I’m listening to D. Smoke, Shy Glizzy, Roddy Ricch and Nipsey Hussle. What are some of the biggest obstacles you’ve encountered or faced in this industry?
One of the biggest obstacles I’ve faced is finding artists to work with or that I can build with. Networking is definitely something I have to work on. I feel my production sound is unique and it’s not for just any and every artist. How would you describe your sound and style?
All over the place. I’ve been told that most of my beats have that “bounce." I really just make music based off how I’m feeling. I can sample and make hip hop tracks or make trap beats well. I like using dark sounds with an uptempo.
What are some of your goals this year?
My main goal this year is to switch the whole sound up actually. I’m currently reinventing my sound and plan to look for an artist who can see the vision with me and bring a new sound to the industry. That’s the only goal I have this year music wise. Who are the top 3 artists, producers, engineers, videographers, or others you would want to work with that you haven’t worked with yet?
Top 3 artists would be: Wiz Khalifa, Travis Scott, and Roddy Ricch.
Top 3 producers: Hit-Boy, Zaytoven and Harry Fraud.
What is your creative process like?
Riding around hearing sounds in my head. Get home and crank up laptop. Isolating myself in my office. Turn off all lights and getting to work. Maybe have a glass of wine while banging out a beat.