Black Milk - conducted by Todd E. Jones  

Black Milk Does A Body Good

February 2007

MVRemix: Yesterday, I just got the new Sean Price album, 'Jesus Price Supastar'. That is so incredible. It's one of those CDs that I just cannot eject because I keep on listening to it over and over again.

Black Milk: Right! That album is crazy with it. I think that album will be one of the dopest releases of the year. I've been listening to it, but I had to take my ears off it. I didn't want to wear it out too soon.

MVRemix: What is the meaning behind your name, Black Milk?

Black Milk: The Black Milk just came from me trying to make a name that stands out when people see it or hear it. I want people to think, 'Who the hell is Black Milk?' Plus, you got a lot of artists with different kinds of names. You have Eminem, Slum Village, and House Shoes. They are different names, but they are not like they sound as if they are from the East Coast or the West Coast. Detroit has different types of names. I came with Black Milk by putting a whole bunch of words on a piece of paper. Those two words just came together.

MVRemix: Metaphorically, why not this? Milk is nourishing. Also, you are Black and have a love for your race. So, you are nourishing your race or culture.

Black Milk: Right! My music does your body good!

MVRemix: As a producer, J Dilla has been an obvious friend and influence to you. In the technical sense of making music, what was the most powerful thing you have learned from him?

Black Milk: Music wise? I learned. I saw how he was stern. I have heard a few stories and I have seen him do this. He would stay on a track until he got it the exact way the beat sounded in his head. I kind of think that way now about my beats. I don't mean being a perfectionist. I am going to do it until it is good to my ears, but I really go off the field and watched how he did things. He just mastered his craft. He mastered the machines and mastered the 3000. That's the way it feels. Every moment, I'm learning something new musically. I'm just trying to grow musically. I saw how he grew musically over the years. I'm trying to do the same thing from live instrumentation to the MPC. That's what I take from him more. J Dilla just kept on being innovative and creative musically. I'm learning new things. I'm learning new things about the drums that he already new about the drums. So, I think to myself, 'Oh, this was what he was doing! This is how he is making the kick punch and the snare snap! ' I always had nice drums, but a certain technique has a certain feel. I know certain techniques, but I'm starting to really master and figure this beat sh*t out.

MVRemix: Favorite drum machine / sampler?

Black Milk: I do most of my work on the MPC 2000 XL. That's what I do here. That's what most of my tracks are done on.

MVRemix: On the 'Hip-Hop For Sale' album by Canibus, there was an advertisement for a Black Milk album on Mic Club Records. What is the story with that?

Black Milk: I don't know what that was about! I was like, 'What? ' My name was spelled wrong. I don't know what that was about. It had like a black hand or something on the cover. I still don't know what that was about till this day. I didn't even talk to him about it.

MVRemix: You did produce a song for the 'Hip-Hop For Sale' album by Canibus, right?

Black Milk: Yeah. That was my beat on that album, but the whole thing about me coming out with a whole album I didn't know anything about. I was like, 'Wow! Okay' I didn't know where that came from.

MVRemix: Word association. When I say a name of a name, you say the first word that pops into your head. So, if I said, 'Flava Flav', you may say 'Clock', 'Crack', or 'The Surreal Life'. Okay?

Black Milk: Alright.

MVRemix: Little Brother.

Black Milk: Backpack.

MVRemix: Baatin.

Black Milk: Talent.

MVRemix: Young RJ.

Black Milk: Cool.

MVRemix: Eminem.

Black Milk: Genius.

MVRemix: Lacks.

Black Milk: Innovative.

MVRemix: Marvin Gaye.

Black Milk: Legend.

MVRemix: Curtis Mayfield.

Black Milk: Legend.

MVRemix: Wu-Tang Clan.

Black Milk: Dirty.

MVRemix: George Bush.

Black Milk: *sshole.

MVRemix: What was the most important lesson you have learned in your career?

Black Milk: Just having patience with everything in life. Whether it is in the music game or just dealing with people, just being calm and having patience. I think I have patience with a lot of stuff now, especially since the way things have been going for me for the last few years. This past year especially, since I've been in the music thing, I've been learning to have patience with people. Everything is not what it seems. I really don't get excited about too much of anything anymore until something happens because I don't want to get disappointed. Those are to things I have learned. I now have patience and I don't believe it until I see it. I try not to get caught up in that hype.

>> continued...

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    "J Dilla just kept on being innovative and creative musically. I'm learning new things. I'm learning new things about the drums that he already new about the drums."