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5 Essential Jazz-Hop Albums That You Should Own with Marcus D

Marcus D is a beatmaker that has been making beats for...

About 7 years now.

One thing is consistent for every Marcus D release and that is international appeal. Would you mind explaining the importance of technology in regards to reaching artists, label personnel, etc that reside in other countries?

To put it in perspective, without the rise of the internet and social networking my career would probably be in a completely different place right now. Not sure I'd even be making the kind of music I am; certainly not with the type of people I am. Accessibility is the leading cause for the saturation of the market, but it's also responsible for giving motivated people an outlet to connect with like-minded individuals.

Today you are releasing a new project called Melancholy Hopeful via Japanese imprint Hydeout/Tribe. Describe the motivation behind the title and project.

The actual wording of the title came from a Blue Scholars song, but the idea behind the name was to try and portray the sound of my music in one adjective for people who've never heard it before. But two worked better because there's a dichotomy in my work: it's not always happy, but it's not necessarily sad either. The motivation behind the album was to bring artists who I'd worked with in the past, and artists I'd wanted to work with for a long time, and attempt to make all their sounds meld with my own as well as each other's.

Hydeout/Tribe was initially founded by the deceased legend Nujabes. Describe the relationship with Hydeout/Tribe. Did you encounter any language barries?

I first met Takumi, one of the co-founders of Hydeout, as well as the other members of the label when I went to the Eternal Soul tribute in Japan during 2010. Last year in December, I had the opportunity to link with him and FK (Tribe) again while touring in Tokyo. There's a pretty strong linguistic and cultural barrier, but I speak a bit of Japanese, and they're English is definitely conversational.

Speaking of the late Nujabes, I was scrolling your website and I came across an image that states that "Nujabes was my Dilla." Would you mind expounding on that powerful statement?

To a lot of the older (and new) heads, Dilla was the man. He was a producer's producer in the sense that what he did with samples and arrangements was unprecedented. But for me, I wasn't really exposed to his music coming up, other than the "Let's Grow" joint he did with Royce on the Lyricist Lounge tape. For the new generation, that producer's producer is undoubtedly Nujabes. There's just something about the things he does with his flips and arrangements that draws you in. So that statement I guess, came from me trying to relate to traditional listeners of hip-hop, what he meant to me and my career, and what he meant to us as people who came up in this Neo-Jazz Hop era, if you will, listening to him.

Are there any featured artists on Melancholy Hopeful?

Quite a few. Ranging from frequent collaborators like Substantial, Shing02, Larue, Steph, and Cise Star, to some fairly new ones like Funky DL, One Be Lo, Pismo, & Awon. I try to get a mix of national and local artists on all my projects, so there's also features from prominent Seattle artists like Choklate, Luck One, and Mario Sweet, and Vitamin D mixed the the entire project. Also have my first producer collaboration on there with Emancipator.

I love the single "Night On The Town" that features Cise Star, Substantial, and Funky DL. Describe the relationship that you have with Bop Alloy crew mate Substantial.

Haha, we're basically family. There was a point where I was so star-struck that I could barely have a normal conversation with the guy, but that's subsided into a pretty dope and usually comical rapport on and off stage. Hard to find someone you get along with outside of music, but who's about business when it's time to put that hat on.

Marcus D's production style consists of?

If I had to describe it myself, I guess I'd say a mix between hard drums and melancholic, but uplifting melodies.

Where can the masses purchase Melancholy Hopeful? Do you know when Melancholy Hopeful will be released in the US?

The US masses can already purchase the physical album on my WEBSITE The Japanese masses, or fans who want a copy of the Japanese version, can purchase it from www.hydeout-tribe.net.

How can the masses get in contact with you?

I've got a Tumblr I check frequently and answer questions on, and my Facebook gets a lot of use too. I do the tweet thing every now and then too.

Any final remarks?

Just wanna say thank you to the people that deem me listenable. You're my livelihood, and no amount of success will delude me into thinking that I could've gotten where I am without you...so hit me up, whether it's to tell me what you think of the album or just to say hi.

Stay classy. Peace and blessings.

Can you detail five essential jazz-hop albums that everyone should own?

1. Low End Theory - A Tribe Called Quest

2. Metaphorical Music - Nujabes

3. Soundtracks 2/Music Castle - DJ Deckstream

4. To This Union A Sun Was Born - Substantial

5. Substantial & Marcus D are...Bop Alloy - Bop Alloy

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