Behind every chart-topping song is a talented music producer. Beats are the backdrop for every song, in some cases overshadowing the lyrics depending on who produced the beat. Stand out music producers like Timbaland, Pharrell Williams and Calvin Harris have transformed pop culture with their production, laying the foundation for future music creators.
Carrying on that legacy in an innovative way is KYO!, the newest up and coming music producer for our generation. The young music producer has been making beats for many years, his talents granting him the opportunity to work with many A-List artists. KYO!’s journey towards music began early, his focus initially on becoming an actual music artist—not the person producing music for artists.
Before delving into the production world, exercising his talents behind-the-scenes, the budding music producer originally wanted to be a rapper. Realizing in his teen years that a career as a rapper wasn’t his passion, the aspiring music maker transitioned into the production side of music.
“Music has always been one of my biggest passions,” KYO! said. “I have wanted to do music since I was about three years old, at first I thought I wanted to be a rapper until about 9th grade, then I realized it wasn’t for me so I went to the second option which was producing.”
Already coming from a family that had exposed him to an array of music genres, KYO! was well equipped when he launched his music production journey.
“Growing up my family would always play different types of music,” KYO! said “Whether it was rap, R&B, rock or house music, I was always introduced to new music and genres so my passion just kept getting fueled.”
Akin to many notable producers, KYO! takes his craft seriously, gaining influence from the legendary work of various mega music producers.
“When I turned eighteen I finally decided to take action and pursue my music career,” KYO! said. “I went to audio engineering school and graduated in 2012. While in school, I also interned for various studios and learned a lot about production and the business. The music producers that have inspired my journey are Timbaland, Pharrell, Dr. Dre, Dj Quik and Diddy. One of the main reasons why they stuck out to me was because they weren’t afraid to collaborate with different artists which expanded their music palettes and created dope music in different genres.”
Taking all of the knowledge that he accumulated during his time in engineering school and in internships, KYO! utilized his experience to lay the groundwork for becoming a music hitmaker. In 2013 KYO! launched his own recording studio.
“Being an intern for many years made me realize that no one was going to give me the opportunity to produce and engineer at their studio,” KYO! said. “That’s when I made the decision to open up my own studio in 2013. It is rewarding because I get to work my dream job everyday and work with talented people.”
Over the years KYO! has collaborated with household names in music, as well as up and coming talent. Usher, Zacari, Kevin Gates, RJ, G Perico, Carly Rae Jepsen, K.Flay, Rucci, Sevyn, Max & Lenny Santos (Aventura), are some of the stars that KYO! has worked with. Among the artists that KYO! has produced for Grammy-winning R&B singer Usher and TDE singer-songwriter Zacari are his favorite collaborators thus far.
“All of the artists that I have worked with were all dope,” KYO! said. “Every one of them were unique in their own ways. One of my favorites was Usher because for one he is a legend and also he was very cool and easy going. Another one of my favorites was Zacari, I spent days and hours working with him, so I got to really know & he took a lot of my input and ideas into consideration.”
Between working with established music artists, and growing his abilities in music production, KYO! has positioned himself as a viable music producer and sound engineer within the industry. Sound engineering is an aspect of music production, however sound engineering is a lane of its own. While many music producers can also be sound engineers, not all music producers cross-over into being able to sound engineer like KYO! does.
KYO!’s unique dual ability is helpful for him, separating him from others who classify themselves as music producers. Albeit KYO! can thrive as a music producer and sound engineer, he prefers straight music producing more.
“My preference is producing because I feel like I have more creativity over engineering,” KYO said. “ I can only go as far as the artist wants me to and with production I go as far as I want to. Engineering was a way of gaining trust from artists so I can show them my beats. Plus engineering gets very tedious at times and I don’t feel that from producing.”
KYO!’s creativity can be observed in his latest project Alone, featuring Rozee. A song that KYO! initially created for Kelly Rowland, according to Buzz Music.
“The latest project that I’m most proud of is my own single Alone,” KYO said. “It definitely took me out of my comfort zone by making me realize that I can take matters into my own hands and in turn, it’s making me achieve greater heights in my music career.”
This is just the beginning for KYO!, and at this rate there will be tons more to come from the budding music super-producer. If it’s in his destiny, we could hear a collab from KYO! and one of the artists he aspires to make music with.
“I have a variety of artists from different genres that I would love to work with,” KYO! said. “My top five artists would be J Balvin, Meek Mill, Gunna, El Alfa, and Rihanna.”