A Lost Pilot
JRich Talks Working At QC, The Difference Between Producers And Engineers + More!
We got the chance to connect with engineer JRich. He's had the chance to work a lot with the artists over at QC and also works closely with Timbaland. He's worked with artists like: D Savage, Lil Yachty, Offset, J. Cole, Smooky MarGielaa, and more! Check out my favorite track he engineered: "How Did I Get Here" by Offset (feat. J. Cole).
Where are you from and what age did you first make a connection to engineering music? And how long have you been engineering music?
I was born in LA, but I was raised in Atlanta. I've been engineering music since 2010.
What was going on in your life when you engineered your first song? Was being an engineer always your goal as a career were you ever interested in beat making?
I was scared, my mentor had been telling people I was mixing the songs that he was actually doing so that people could trust me. One of my first times recording someone was when Gucci Mane came to our homemade basement studio. I was nervous not only because of who he is but also how fast he wanted things done.
There's a lot of confusion between producers and engineers can you tell us the difference between the two? What's your role as an engineer?
The producer makes the music for the song. While the engineer cleans the vocals and the music and makes it good for the ear to hear. Engineers also record the vocals for the track. They take out the bad qualities in the vocals and music and enhance the good ones.
What's your engineer tag? How did you create it? What's the importance of having an engineer tag?
I have a couple of tags, "JRich you better wake up and record this" "JRich mixing while you got damn rap that's fye". It's important to have a tag, especially when you are not getting paid. I did it so that I could build a name and advertise my work. I would work with upcoming artists that I believed in for free in exchange for verses, or just to put my name out. When I first started working with Lil Yachty I would pay for his recording sessions so that I could help get my name out.
How/when did you first connect with Offset? You worked a lot on Offset's album "Father Of 4" and I know you worked on a lot of the songs but can you run us through specifically engineering "How Did I Get Here" with Offset and J. Cole?
I met Offset through working at QC. It was crazy because a lot of people thought I was a great engineer already. But, Offset pushed me to become better. He raps and freestyles each line so fast after the other. It’s something I’ve never seen before. How Did I Get Here is a crazy record, and I recorded his vocals in LA I believe I didn’t record J. Cole but we barely got his vocals in time, literally hours before the album released.
How/when did you first connect with Yachty? You worked on one of the songs that helped Lil Yachty's career a lot, "Wanna Be Us". Can you run us through engineering the song with Yachty and The Good Perry?
I met Yachty and long time ago, through a mutual friend at the time named ZeusTrappin who just started working with him. I remember driving to pick him up from GA State like it was yesterday. Then we would go to his friend's apartment and record out the closet. Wanna Be Us is a crazy record we recorded at QC. While him and Perry were recording I suggested my friend who was in the studio (Shemida J) to sing behind Yachty. It turned out to sound amazing and the song became a hit!!
How/when did you first connect with Smooky MarGielaa? Can you run us through engineering "Shawty"? What was it like working with him on the song?
I met Smooky along time ago as well, He was very young and hustling like crazy. Like for a 13-year old, I couldn't believe how he was finessing and flying and making moves for himself. I believed in him early and did what I could to help him record for free as well as network. In Atlanta, I would let him and his friends pig out at a restaurant I was working as a waiter. Smooky gave me the Shawty record out of love because of everything I was doing to help him. I recorded myself and the hook and Smooky came and filled in the blanks. We did this in Atlanta at ATLHD.
How/when did you first connect with D Savage? Can you run us through the process of engineering "Beam"? What was it like working with him on the song?
I met D.Savage through Thouxanbanfauni. Fauni brought him to this house studio in LA. I was out there to work with Rome Fortune, but I begged him to let me record these guys because I knew they were next up, reluctantly he obliged. That's actually Rome Fortunes voice on my tag "JRich You Better wake up and record this!". He and Fauni did two songs that night. I remember telling D.Savage that beam was a hit though!!
One thing you know now as an engineer that you wish you knew when you first started out?
Everything isn't about the money you have to build your credits to demand your price.
What's on the horizon for your music career in 2019?
I've been doing a lot of Management work and ANR work. I have a track record for helping Lightskinkeisha and K$upreme mold their careers early on. Right now, I am currently doing AnR work for Timbaland and Mosley Music Group. I have also started working on a new app that's been gaining attention. It's called "The Boards Inc" it's an engineering app that helps engineers network, learn, and get booked.
Check him out: