Saturday, December 5, 2009

iStandard / CertiFYD intervew on "iStandard Producers" website

iStandard's website link:
iStandard / CertiFYD Interview


Interview by: Kristen Teesdale

What’s up, CertiFYD. Thanks for taking time out to talk to iStandard. So let’s get to it. You both began as musicians for several independent and major acts. How did you score your first gig?

J. Guido- Basically it all started playing in church as a kid. Music was always the coolest part of church when I grew up and when a need for a guitar player arose I stepped up thanks to the help of my mom and dad.

Pi- My first gig was at church as well.

Who are some of the artists you played with/for prior to the inception of CertiFYD Production Group?

PI- Musiq SoulChild, Jeff Bradshaw, Corey “Latif” Williams (songwriter for Chris Brown, Cassie, Musiq)

I read that you grew up in Camden, NJ. What was the music scene like in Camden when you were younger and how did that play into your career development?

Pi- There is a lot of talent in Camden NJ but really not a lot of outlets to get your music out there. I went to a Creative Arts High School, which helped a lot in being around other artist and musicians. But you have to realize that Camden NJ was just rated “The Most Dangerous City” in the nation according to FBI reports just the other day.

Camden has consistently been in the top 10 most dangerous cities. Surrounded by so much negativity and crime, CertiFYD wants to show and prove that there is a lot of talent coming from this city and positive things happening as well.

J. Guido- Philadelphia is just a 5 minute drive over the bridge so we are influenced by the Philly scene as well.

Incorporating real instruments into your production work can really foster a unique sound that a lot of producers don’t have the ability to recreate. Do you find that it gives you an edge in the industry?

J. Guido- I think it does because we are able to cut stuff from scratch, transpose, and arrange harmonies, naturally because of our background with understanding chord structure.

Conversely, what are some of the challenges posed when you integrate your own musical elements in this line of work?

Pi- I guess it can be a gift and a curse to be so talented…lol, just joking.

Nah, just playing. I think the challenge is being to able put to produce music for the average listener to enjoy versus making music for musicians.

As brothers, do you find it difficult to work together at times? Or does the sibling connection only strengthen the work relationship?

J. Guido- Lol…I think it’s both. Sometimes it difficult to draw the line between brother versus partner and like all family things can get tensed and stressful, but the bottom line is that we have great chemistry together and love making music.

Ok, break it down for us. Who is better on the drums? The bass?

Pi- Well basically my main instrument is the drums and J. Guido’s strength is the guitar, but we can play it all in the studio.

With such a broad range of experience to boast (rock, pop, hip hop, etc.), you remain versatile in a constantly evolving industry. Does your creative process differ for each genre or do you maintain the same system regardless?

J. Guido- It really just depends. Usually if we are working on a Rock or R&B track it will start from a melody idea from the guitar or keyboard. For the Hip Hop joints is more about the drums. We get our inspiration from many different things in life, but no matter if we are working on a Rock or Hip Hop track we are just capturing the moment.

Pi-Sometimes it may vary on how you approach the different music styles. These days an R&B track can be a Hip Hop joint and vice versa or Rock music with Hip Hop drums is a hard beat, etc… Music is music, it just has to fit the vibe.

What do you do when you find yourself struggling to find that perfect beat?

Pi- If we are in a situation where we are not feeling the vibe or the ideas we’ll just take a break, clear the mind a little…lol, and get back to work. That usually works… (jokingly laughs)

You’ve said that “this is not a hobby, but it’s your life.” Do you believe that the passion that drives you was born in you or has it developed and increased over time?

J. Guido- Both. In order to fight this music industry battle you have to love and hate it at the same time. At the end of the day it’s our love for the music that keeps us here. Being able to change the way people feel thru our music is what motivates us.

What’s next for CertiFYD?

J. Guido- Right now we are just working hard and pushing forward. We are about to ink an endorsement deal with Roland for promoting some of their products, and working on some new projects that will be coming out soon. Also, getting ready to drop our artist, Yae Hustle (rapper from Philly) first mixtape and working with our R&B Artist / Songwriter Chino Moy.

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