Interview by OLO
Blunted Beatz are two guys from Hamburg very passionate who produced a great number of beats with a great quality. Jo and Dave are 23 years old and thanks to Internet we talk throughout history.
What was the life before the Blunted Adventure? Are you both born in Hamburg?
Yes, we are both from Hamburg. Dave was born here while I was born in Bremen, a neighboring town, and moved to Hamburg in the age of 6.
Before Blunted we were both of us going to school and being casual teens, playing video games, going to parties and do all the other stuff people do around this age! At 17 we kind of started the Blunted Adventure when starting producing music together.
After finishing school both of us also signed up for university in Hamburg while Blunted had already started.
Currently Dave and I just focus on the music, since the adventure got bigger and bigger and therefore basically paused our bachelor studies.
How do you meet?
We used to go to the same school, but first we met in 9th or 10th grade through common friends we had. This was before both of us started doing music.
Due to the fact, that we lived in the same neighborhood and had the same friends, we started to hang out after school and became close friends.
How did it all begin?
Back then a lot people out of our group of friends were attached to HipHop and did rap music themselves. One friend even had a selfmade studio in his basement.Though Dave and I weren’t actually rapping or making beats, we really loved 90s HipHop and RnB.
In 10th grade we both started to attend music class called Rock/Pop Workshop offered by our school, for which you had to participate in a band and perform in an annual concert.
Dave started to rap and I played bass in a band, this was the first time we really got in touch with making music.
Around that time we decided to make HipHop beats, mostly because we just thought it would be cool to rap over our own beats.We were highly impressed and inspired by the works of J.Dilla, Pete Rock, DJ Premier and Madlip!
After producing our first beats, we started to publish them on SoundCloud until Dave came up with the idea to upload them on YouTube as well.
At first we did not have big success, but kept going anyway. After a while we realized that people were liking what we did and that we could reach out to a lot of people through that. At that moment we started to produce and publish nearly every day.
What’s a typical Blunted day (music, friends, habits and so on) and when do you sleep?
Most of the time we get up, meet in the studio and start to make a plan for the day: which deadlines do we have to meet, what are urgent tasks? Are there any possibilities or chances to evolve the brand? After that daily catch up we normally start to work on the music. Most of the time we’re both working on different projects and then switch frequently. For example we did often split during the creation of Blunted Clothing. One of us was designing or working on the website, while the other one was producing music.
Quite often there are also friends, other producers or songwriters around we work and collaborate with.
As mentioned before we come from the same area and therefore have a lot of friends in common which is really nice.
That way we can spend time with our friends while still getting work done. In addition, a lot of the people we have started to work with have become friends by now.
Haha, we go to bed when the work is done. We actually do night sessions on a regular basis, which means that we start around noon and work till the next morning.
This often helps us to focus on the music and get a lot of work done. Even though we currently get supported by friends in different ways, we were only us two for a long time. Through this we got used to stay working to get all the different projects done.
You prefer to work early in the morning or the night when it’s late?
That depends on the kind of task we have to work on.
As I mentioned earlier, we do night sessions two or three times a week to focus on the music, especially on Blunted projects where it’s all about creating our own music. It is just easier to deepen into the production process in order to get the song you want. For a lot of other Blunted projects, like Blunted Clothing, or projects with artists and songwriters, we mostly work in the morning and early afternoon.
We frequently keep on working after we finished a session and as I said work parallel. A night session after working over the day on a project is therefore not unusual.
You do have a home studio, but I saw on Instagram that you also work in other studios. Why ?
When we work in other studios it is most of the time not for our own projects. We work with and for other artists, songwriters and labels on a regular basis. They often invite us to their studios. It is actually a nice diversion from our daily routine in our home studio.
Furthermore, we go to songwriting camps and similar events. Most of the photos on Instagram were made in such a case and do not document our daily routine!
How much of the time do you work with Sarah Spectrum? Are all the photos you published since you collaborate from her ?
We often work with Sarah. Dave got to know her in 2013 during his backpacking trip in Australia and we work with her ever since. Her work is amazing, though not all our videos are made with her pictures. Nevertheless, her photos have a special look which really fits to Blunted Beatz and gives our music a special vibe.
What kind of feedback did you receive for the project 1994 LP? Did or do you promote the vinyl with concerts or advertisement for instance ?
Before the released lot of fans and followers of our music asked us to produce a vinyl album and we were and still are getting a lot of positive feedback from them! Though we didn’t give concerts, we did some promotion around Hamburg and also sold the album in local stores.
Do you collaborate with a lot of rappers?
Yes we do.
Beside the many artists we worked with indirectly through our Youtube channel and our website, we are currently working with different rappers and artists.
At the moment, we focus on the release of the collaboration EP with Micah Xavier Jones (the EP is available on the youtube channel Bluntedbeatz), an amazing rapper from Arkansas we met in Germany last year. The EP will be the first out of a couple of projects we will share with our fans. Even though we produce for a lot for German and American artists, we feel like this EP will really reflect the Blunted style and will be a good start for more upcoming releases by Blunted !
We furthermore work with a lot of newcomers from Germany and are always open for new projects.
I heard that DJ Premier had produced songs for Kylie Minogue. Is it also your wish to work with other artists from different genres ? Or you are just focusing on HipHop and RnB ?
We actually do! At the moment we work on various projects, which also include Pop, House, Trap and Dance Music. Most of the work is specific production for other artists and labels. We also thought about releasing different type of genres ourselves, though there is no concrete plan for any releases. In our view, this is just the natural process as producers. We always evolve and love all kinds of music as long as it transports feelings and energy; in other words: has the right vibes. It does not matter to us if it is HipHop, Pop, RnB, Soul, Trap or House.
Though HipHop will always be our favourite, we are not limited to that. A lot of the Pop music for example is nowadays influenced by HipHop and RnB. This makes it easier for us to switch styles and try crossovers as well as adopt new styles.
What is the idea behind Blunted Clothing and how did the idea come up?
We played with the idea of Blunted Clothing for a very long time! Basically since 2013.
It was just the simple idea of having caps and shirts, not just for our fans, but also for our friends and us. In the beginning we saw it as an idea, that we would like top implement in the long term. When more and more fans and also friends told us they would love to have Blunted Clothing, we really started the project in 2015.
We found a partner that fitted our needs for the manufacturing part and from there we started to create our own clothing line. We started with designing the caps and then went on to T-shirts, tanktops and sweaters.
Due to the fact, that we did it all by ourselves it took some time to get the right designs, patterns, materials and to set up our online shop.
Don’t you think that the products should be less expensive in the beginning? How is the first feedback you get from people for your clothing brand?
One could think that, but we put a lot of hard work in our first collection and invested a lot of money to get the best quality you could get. Everything is produced in Italy and we use only high quality materials to fit the standard of all the well known fashion and lifestyle brands. We decided to invest more to give our fans the best we could get and think that the price is reasonable if you consider the time and money we invested.
We consider Blunted Clothing not exclusively as merchandise. We created it to complement the music and evolve Blunted as a whole brand. We are currently working on new pieces which will complement the existing collection and will be less expensive.
The feedback we got so far regarding Blunted Clothing is very positive. Especially for our Bluntedcaps and T-shirt’s we get a lot of requests and positive responses! A lot of friends told us that they got positive feedback from third-persons that do not know about our music production and actually got one themselves.
Could you talk about the creation of a new idea called »Above the Beats »?
Our fans often ask us to give an insight about our music production. With Above the Beats we plan to do that for the first time.
The idea is to show us from a bird’s eye perspective while we are producing a beat. In this way we are able to give our fans an inside view of the whole production process.
For the first season of Above the Beats we produced six different beats, of which some will also have different styles than the classical Blunted style you might know from YouTube.
Nevertheless, our fans can look forward to insights from the classic Blunted Oldschool HipHop production. The videos will be between 4 and 8 minutes long and will show our music from a new perspective. Also most of our fans, especially those who are not from Hamburg, will see us in action for the first time. We are really excited about that !
We recorded the videos in the Faceland Studios Hamburg and teamed up with TK Video Productions, a well known German Videoproducer who already created countless of very successful music videos for German rappers. He managed the visual part while we produced the music.