Exclusive interview with REDONE
The music producer who makes waves across the world
As a worldwide producer and song writer born in morocco, what do you like about your country?
Ever since I was a kid, I have always been mesmerized by many Moroccan things, the food is to die for, people are always friendly and the weather is fitting to its seasons. I am proud to be Moroccan and I believe that our culture is a combination of many different things that makes it special. I have been all over the world but to be honest Morocco is my most favourite country, so it’s very hard for me to point out something I love about my country when I love everything about it.
You have been known for creating great hits for influences stars like Lady Gaga, J.lo and Nicki Minaj, did you ever visualize that when you were young?
I always have been a dreamer and a believer, I dreamt about doing big things with the hope that the world will somehow appreciate some of my work. But I had to be driven and work really hard in order to make it happen. To be honest I have never thought it would happen this way, I mean the idea of being a producer never crossed my mind; I thought that the only way to make history is by playing good music. At first it was difficult for me to only focus on one style of music since I have been working with various styles of music such as reggae, rock, pop, hiphop… I decided to do it all for the purpose of not being cornered and stuck in one genre so I created different sounds and worked with different artists. And thankfully the long years of taking risks and doing serious hard work has paid off.
How did you feel the first time you heard a song of yours on the radio?
It was unreal, I remember screaming “oh my God!”! I wanted to hear it as loud as possible for as many times as I can, because I couldn’t believe that a song that I created in a little studio of mine was finally out there so it was amazing knowing that people can now listen to a song I have written and produced. And this feeling never fades away I just appreciate those ungraspable moments because nothing really lasts forever and you must appreciate what you have because it helps you grow more as a person and be happy with what you have accomplished.
What was it like wining a Grammy ?
When I won the Grammys for the first time, it was a huge emotional moment, because for a musician winning a grammy is the same as winning an oscar for an actor, It’s like the ultimate achievement. when you stand there with a Grammy in your hands it's like a dream come true, the ultimate reward for your hard work, it was a historical moment.
Do you go through a different process while working on songs for yourself as opposed to writing them for other artists?
Because I love music the process of making songs is very enjoyable for me whether they’re made for me or for other artists, the only difference though is that while making music for different artists I need to keep in made their vibe and feeling while making the songs, it must be suitable to the artists’ voices and it has to have their own input and flavour on them. Luckily I can sense what the artists want in a song so making sounds has never been hard for me.
We’ve seen you in some funny videos with the famous blogger Amanda Cerny, would you ever consider doing some acting if offered to you ?
No, I don’t think so (giggles). I only act that way with people I’m most comfortable with, like my family and friends. So doing it as a profession never really crossed my mind.
We would like to know how the collaboration between you, daddy yankee, French Montana and Dinah jane on your recent single “Boom Boom” came to life ?
I have always loved modjo’s “lady, hear me tonight”, so the idea of sampling the song was always on the back of my mind, so when I’ve finally finished the song I played it for some friends of mine and French Montana happened to love it so we ended up recording it, then one day both fifth harmony’s Dinah jane and I were in the studio and I played the song for her and she instantly fell in love with it she also is a big fan of French Montana so she immediately jumped on board. Originally Fetty wap was also on the track but giving his loaded schedule at the time , the song was pushed back for months. But see I’m a big believer of the saying “ everything happens for a reason”, because I wanted the song to be released for the public I started looking for another artist to be featured on the track , someone to bring the song to life, then the name Daddy yankee, whom I’m a huge fan of, crossed my mind so I reached out to him and we met up at a studio in new york and he killed it, I mean the guy is a reggaetton legend, I also changed the title from “you here tonight” to “boom boom” because of DY thanks to his signature “boom” and “Bam”. So this is pretty much the full story of how “Boom Boom” has been made.
Why did you specifically choose Morocco as a location to shoot the music video?
I love my country, I’m also very proud of my roots so showing off my country to the world has always been a dream of mine , I’ve previously brought different artists here such as J.lo and Enrique Iglesias and they loved it, same goes to daddy yankee he was like “Oh my god, it’s amazing, we need to come back here”. I want the artists I work with to see where I’m from, to see where my music taste comes from and also to see how beautiful my country is.
Do you have a particular artist that you want to collaborate with in the near future?
There are many great artists out there, and I also happen to have worked with the artists that I admire most like daddy Yankee, French Montana, Enrique Iglesias and the list goes on and on. But you see we never see what the future holds, I might meet a new artist I want to collaborate with.
What would you choose as your favourite city Marrakesh, L.A or Paris?
I live in L.A and I love it. It’s where I make my music live and the weather is beautiful. I’ve visited Paris a few times; it’s a beautiful city too. But Marrakech is my city ! Of course I was born in Tetouan, but Marrakech is magical. All the artists I brought here thought it was breath-taking too.The red coloured city. There are so many places to visit, the weather is mostly warm, the festive atmosphere and great foods and hotels definitely make Marrakech my favourite city in the whole world.
11. What is your favourite brand of clothes?
I Like many brands and different styles, But I always look for clothes I’m most comfortable in, it’s very important for me to feel pleasant in what I wear, DSQUARED2 is definitely one of my favourite brands.
We would like to know about the first time Michael Jackson contacted you.
Michael Jackson and I happen to have the same lawyer and Michael asked the lawyer to meet me and this was while dining with my wife at a restaurant in L.A, I was asked to come out of the restaurant to meet him but when I did no one was there but my lawyer and he pointed out a black car that was standing up front he opened the door and asked me to get in, as soon as I did and turned my head I locked eyes with MJ and he was like “Hi red, I was flabbergasted I mean Michael Jackson was talking to me, I thought I was dreaming, but then we started meeting up in his studio and you know after a while I started to get comfortable around him, it wasn’t until months later we were at his house in a studio and he went in to record the vocals and started singing that I realized again that MICHAEL JACKSON is in front of me, I got chills while listening to him singing, his voice was unreal. It’s one of the most intense moments in my life I will never forget about it
Is it true that you used Bruno Mars’ vocals for a song you were working on with MJ?
Yes, it’s true. I recorded the last song I was supposed to work on with Michael with the voice of Bruno Mars because his voice sounds so similar to Michael’s; but this was way before Bruno was THE BRUNO MARS that everyone knows but he did a great job, really.
Par M.E, Y.C, M.F