“I’ma just keep it short and sweet, but basically, I left school early one day, and I got to my car, to the student lot. And I see my door peaked open a little bit, and I open it. And I see this kid hotboxing in my car, like smoking a blunt. So I pulled him out and punched him in the face. And he said, ‘What the fuck are you crazy?’ Then he ran away”.
Inhaling the fumes from his glass bong, sitting in his parents’ garage, spanishkid began to delve into his past, outlining his journey as a young producer growing up in Bergen County, New Jersey. In his four years of making beats, he’s worked with the likes Don Q, Trap Manny, Markabillion, Big Child Support and more.
To start the interview, I asked him one of the most basic questions of all. “Who is spanishkid”? His response was simple, yet candid.
“That’s a good question. Spanishkid is… a spanish kid. Technically I’m an adult but… He is a producer that makes beats. Yeah, spanishkid’s just a producer that makes beats.”
Spanishkid is yet another fortunate victim of the now heavily saturated and quickly growing Internet music scene. More and more today, we are seeing kids able to galvanize organic followings and literally build careers, out of the utilization and manipulation of social media and the Internet.
Affiliated with the Cart Gang collective, whose members include 14shooters, Landon Laney and Indintoyko, Spanishkid has began to build a name for himself in the underground scene with his intoxicating melodies and largely trap-inspired drum patterns. He is also a licensed audio engineer.
So far in his career, his fluid versatility as a beatmaker has distinguished himself from others, with sounds ranging from aggressive, hard-knocking bangers, to more mellow, melodic and sometimes even psychedelic vibes.
Most notably, in mid-2019, he produced the track, “PEERS” by Trap Manny ft. Don Q, which currently sits at about 100,000 plays on Youtube. According to spanishkid, “PEERS” is his favorite track he’s produced so far.
“That’s my biggest one so far”.
When asked about how he received this particular placement, spanishkid, unsurprisingly, gave a nod to the Internet.
“You could literably be in your crib, you could be a fucking nobody, you could live on fucking Mars if you got internet connection, and you could get famous. Back then, you used to need a record label and nowadays, you can just get rich by yourself. “
We’ve seen this story play out with several producers in the rap game today; Zaytoven, the entire 808 Mafia collective, the Internet Money team, and now, people like Kio (best known for making the “Old Town Road” beat), who have been able to achieve multi-platinum success, all through generating traffic to their music online. The traditional pathways to the limelight have effectively changed for good.
The tale of spanishkid’s inception isn’t particularly extraordinary. His come-up story reflects this rising wave of young kids, all around the world, connecting to the music industry through the Internet.
“I know spanishkid because he lived a block away from me”, said Kid Gerb, a NJ rapper and producer who grew up with spanishkid. “We ended up being friends who skateboarded and played basketball. Then around sophomore year, he literally just came to my house and said, ‘I just downloaded FL Studios. I’m gonna be a producer’. And his whole career started right there in front of me.”
This was just four years ago. No producing classes. No textbooks or manuals on how to use the software. Barely a musical background. Just Youtube tutorials. According to spanishkid, the youth has generated an entire new wave of producers just like him. He gives credit to this phenomenon for paving a career path for him and others.
“I hate how everybody thinks you gotta go to school and do this and that or else you’re a loser type shit. Nah. That’s not the case at all. Mad people are just close minded”.
New York rapper, producer, and engineer itseli says spanishkid’s commitment to pleasing the artist is also a main factor in his success. He says “being real” and overall purveying a genuine attitude to others, goes a long way.
“Spanishkid doesn’t have a style. He tries to give the artist what the artist wants. If the artist wants pots and pans, best believe he’s gonna be in the kitchen samplin’ a ruckus. “People should care about spanishkid ‘cause he cares about people. He’s one to share his last dollar with you if it comes down to it. And that takes realness.”
One obstacle that spanishkid has had to endure is being from a relatively quiet scene, in terms of hip-hop. Being from Paramus, which is known for little else than its shopping malls and as being the homeset of Coneheads, the 1993 sci-fi comedy film featuring Adam Sandler, spanishkid gave no credit to his hometown for fueling his music career.
“It’s just the fucking suburbs. You grow up. Go to school. You’ll probably play a sport. It’s just like a big fucking shopping center here.”
As we see more and more young artists and producers rise to prominence online, one notion has become very apparent: No longer do you have to travel to where the music industry is active. In 2020, the industry can come to you.
We wait to see how this ever-changing music landscape will continue to evolve and transform in the upcoming years. As music publicity largely shifts to online mediums and independent musicians start taking control of their own fates, it is safe to say that the Internet has opened doors. More and more unlikely stars have become faces of our entertainment industry. And the mold is being broken every day. Can spanishkid be one of them?
I concluded the interview with one last question for spanishkid: “Where do you see yourself in 10 years from now? 20 years”? Without hesitation, the young Cuban producer replied, “Multi-platinum. Rich as fuck. 20 years from now. Even richer.”
Make sure to peep spanishkid’s latest single with Highbridge, NY natives, Trap Manny and Don Q: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b6E7imo3EA
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