Che Pope is a name you should definitely know, but you would be excused if you didn't.
The somewhat veiled head of G.O.O.D. Music, who has been around the game for several decades, producing hits for the likes of Wyclef Jean, Lauryn Hill, 50 Cent and A$AP Rocky, recently sat down with Red Bull Music Academy in Paris. The GRAMMY-winning producer touched on everything from the making of Yeezusto his work alongside legendary German composer Hans Zimmer.
Pope wastes little time dropping gems, immediately explaining that Yeezus was created entirely in Paris over a six-month timespan. "As accomplished as Dark Twisted Fantasywas, he felt like it was an apology coming off the Taylor Swift stuff and all that so he felt he had to make the best album," Pope said of the creation of the Kanye's controversial 2014 release.
Having produced both "Bound 2" and "Black Skinhead," Pope was not only an instrumental part in the creation of the project but also oversaw the creation from a managerial side as well. Pope divulged that the project allowed Kanye to get back to being himself, citing 'Ye taking late night walks through Paris and visiting the Louvre on a weekly basis as inspiration.
It's interesting as well to note the disarming disposition of Pope, which I couldn't help but juxtapose against the mercurial West. Pope describes their working relationship and what it was like to learn to co-exist and thrive in the studio: "Kanye's always going to surprise you, he's always going to be unpredictable, he's always gonna disrupt even when you think you finally have it figured out, he's going to disrupt that. So I think for the first two years, I think it was definitely just sparring, and learning and understanding each other and how to communicate with each other."
Of note, Pope also talks in-depth about sampling in hip-hop and the sounds that it birthed: "In my heyday, sampling was the texture of hip-hop. Like right now, if hip-hop is trap right now, if the Drake and Future album is where everything is at, I think the thing those guys see that we can do ... [is] make it something else and an example of that is Travi$ Scott's album."
If you have an hour and a half of free time, the video is certainly worth a look and is absolutely packed with understood knowledge from one of the brightest minds in the game today.