Interview: Lazerbeak

A&E speaks with the Doomtree producer about his upcoming discussion at The Whole Music Club.

Tony Libera

WHAT: âÄúMaking MusicâÄù feat. Lazerbeak WHEN: Nov. 19 WHERE: The Whole TICKETS: Free Who is Lazerbeak? A giant, robotic bird of prey, terrorizing the city with his blistering eyebeams and deafening mating craw? Thankfully, no; heâÄôs one of the most prolific and talented hip-hop producers working in Minneapolis today, with a strong background in rock âÄònâÄô roll and an uncanny ear for a beat. A&E spoke with Beak about his upcoming discussion as part of the Whole Music ClubâÄôs Making Music series, his early days in music and his upcoming solo album. With a title like Doomtree âÄúSuper Producer,âÄù I imagine youâÄôre a pretty busy guy. What made you want to take part in the WholeâÄôs Making Music Series? LB: This year IâÄôm kind of trying to be less exclusive with [expletive]. Just take whatever comes my way and give it a shot. IâÄôm actually really looking forward to it now. Like, my whole family is going to be there; itâÄôs going to be kind of cool. I just hope people show up. IâÄôm nervous about there being two people there. So weâÄôll see how it goes. [laughs] Do you know what youâÄôre going to be talking about yet? LB: Yeah, they kind of give you a format; thereâÄôs an arc to it. You go through your childhood and things that stuck out musically, and then you get into when you got into music. IâÄôm trying to get together some really funny pictures, because The Plastic Constellations , a band I used to play in, we met when we were, like, in seventh grade. So there are some ridiculous pictures if I can just get them out of my momâÄôs scrapbook. Pretty embarrassing [expletive]. WeâÄôll touch a lot on that and then the last five to seven years itâÄôs been more Doomtree. I know that thereâÄôs, like, a demo. I think IâÄôm going to break down how to make a beat, and IâÄôm going to bring [Doomtree emcee] Mike Mictlan up to perform a song with me. Actually, IâÄôve been working on a solo album, so I think for the first time IâÄôm going to play a song off that. God, I hope itâÄôs not boring, man. IâÄôm going to try to make it awesome. There will probably be a lot of kids at the event who are interested in making hip-hop and entering that scene. As someone who started making music so young, whatâÄôs your advice for up-and-comers? LB: I would just say, âÄúDo it.âÄù Do it as hard as you can, and then try to find some people that are trying to do it as well. ThereâÄôs that power in numbers deal, especially when youâÄôre getting started. I mean, thatâÄôs the whole reason I think Doomtree has succeeded even to the small level of success weâÄôve achieved. YouâÄôve been active in both the hip-hop and rock world. Do you enjoy one genre more than the other? I will say, I probably listen mostly to R&B and rap music on my own time these days, but you know, that changes. I mean, I loved having the balance of the two when [The Plastic Constellations] and Doomtree were both going hard. It has been kind of cool to focus this last year and really kind of hone my craft, as far as beats, and really dedicate everything to that. But for me, things get old if you just keep doing them. So, to tie it back into this solo record, IâÄôm actually singing on the whole thing. That was great to kind of have that outlet, so itâÄôs not just, like, every day, five days a week making a rap beat, you know, making a banger âĦ which I love doing, but itâÄôs nice to mix it up a little bit. So how would you classify the solo album? ItâÄôs definitely not hip-hop, and itâÄôs definitely not, like, rock. ItâÄôs kind of blending those worlds in a way, but I donâÄôt think it really sounds like either of them. ItâÄôs kind of like a pop record, I guess. ItâÄôs totally not hip-hop. The mindset was there, but thereâÄôs no rapping on it; IâÄôm not screaming on it. ItâÄôs pretty laid back; itâÄôs pretty happy. It sounds like a [expletive] kidâÄôs record to me at this point. [laughs] When will it be released? LB: ItâÄôs in the process of being mixed right now. WeâÄôre really not sure what weâÄôre going to do with it yet because it is so different from what weâÄôve been doing, but I feel like people give Doomtree a little bit of breathing room âÄî we can do some weird [expletive] sometimes.