I will mix and master your instrumental or full song! I specialize in Hip Hop, however I have an ear and genuine love for any genre you need. I really love doing this for the sake of the process, so I will work with you if you need any further tweaking. Thank you!
Karim is a producer, songwriter, and recording engineer based out of Richmond, VA. Writing his first song with his cousin at 9, and making his first beat at 17, Karim has always had a passion for the feeling that listening to, and creating, music can bring. Over the course of the past 8 years, Karim has attended school and work while taking his free time to hone his craft, developing an interest in visual editing along the way. He believes in the nature of music as something that connects everyone, seeing it as a universal language. In the past 2 years, Karim has been hyper-focused on developing his own unique sound, taking inspiration from some of the great minds of Hip Hop production inluding !llmind, 9th Wonder, J Dilla, Araab Muzik, and even bridging the gap between genres with samples from System of a Down for example. This is one producer that understands his role as such, creating the best project possible with whatever is at his disposal.
Click the 'Contact' above to get in touch. Looking forward to hearing from you.
Interview with Karim
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: I recently finished a song with my artist. I am very proud of it, because it is the first song I've released that I've ever laid vocals on! I have others in my files, but they aren't finished. I am very proud of the message, and after I tweaked the mix, I got feedback that it sounded way better than the first version. Signs of improvement!
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I am working with my artist on getting his first official release, produced entirely by yours truly!
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Not at this time.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Digital because it's what I know, analog because of the warmth, the sweet warmth.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I promise that I will do whatever it takes to help you bring your vision to life, and make it sound, maybe even look, the best that I can!
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: The creative process, and the feeling I get when the results are great!
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Can I have that beat for free? No, if it was free you would already have it, trust me.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: Producers don't just make beats, a lot of us create the entire song while the artist performs it. Producer is an umbrella term for the person/people behind the scenes that may include recording engineer, beat maker (of course), instrumentalist, songwriter, maybe even a backing vocalist.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: How would you describe your sound? How do you like your drums (punchy, relaxed, bouncy, etc)?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Trust me and I will trust you! The creative process can introduce many clashes of ideas, and while I have great confidence in my ears, I recognize this is not my vision.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Headphones, interface, screen, PC, MIDI Keyboard with drumpads.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I was working in restaurants through the end of high school, until my junior year of college. I then got a job at Lowes, and when I graduated I moved in with my parents and became a Mentor for children with mental challenges. I then moved back to Richmond, VA where I became an ABA therapist. While I loved the line of work, I knew I had to quit if I wanted to truly pursue my dream. I found a couple of part time jobs to pay the bills while I worked on my craft, and I haven't looked back since. I have been producing since I was 17, I am now 25 and have been taking it very seriously for the past 2 years.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I really like using eastern instruments over trap drums. The melodies are just beautiful, but I love the gritty bounce of modern hip hop/trap. I believe I have figured out a good balance of the two.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I consider !llmind an artist, although he is labelled as a producer. I really like the way he presents himself as a balanced individual, and I really love his sound selection, the samples he gives out, and the inspiration that he offers us as creatives.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: There are basic mix settings that work best, but there are no rules!
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Hip Hop, LoFi
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Attention to detail. I will spend hours if necessary trying to figure out why this open hat is clashing with the 808, why the snare sounds too thin, or why the vocals aren't quite sitting right with the instrumental, etc.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I am confident in my ability to know the direction an artist is going for. There hasn't been a time yet during a session where an idea I had either wasn't utilized, or built upon further by the artist.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I generally scroll through my samples just to get some ideas for sounds, unless I have a melody in mind. In which case I will try to lock down the timbre or the note/chord progression if the timbre is too ambiguous. I will then add my drums for bounce, and from there the rest is up to the spontaneity of the process.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I use 2 5" KRK Rokit Monitors, Audio Techinca ATH-M50 Headphones, PreSonus Interface, AKAI Advance 49 Keyboard, MPC Studio Pro, FL Studio 20 (for beatmaking), Pro Tools 12 HD (for audio recording). All of this is run through a PC that I custom built myself and am very proud of.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: !llmind, Lu Diaz, Rage Against the Machine
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Beat making, production, audio recording, mix & master engineering