Producer Andre Ramone

Music Producer Andre Ramone

  • Hip Hop Producer
  • EDM Producer
  • Pop Producer
  • Songwriter
  • Emcee (MC)/ Rapper

 

Everybody’s a beat maker!

Do you know how many times I’ve heard that? Too many to count – I assure you – but I never let it discourage me because while, ‘everyone’ may indeed ‘make beats’, I – on the other hand – in addition to being a beat maker, am a composer & producer and very few can do what I do! Real talk –I’m very good at making music, though that hasn’t always been the case.

When I was 10 years old, I started writing raps and performing for family and the church in Anaheim, Ca where I grew up. This was in the early 90’s when Kriss Kross was doing their thing and I wanted to rock the mic just like them, LL Cool J, MC Hammer among others. I spent a couple of years perfecting my style –rapping to my brothers’ collection of instrumentals but when I turned 12, things changed.

I was listening to the radio one day when I heard something that would change my life forever. It was a song – aptly titled – “Dre Day”. Those heavy kick drums, stacked-snares and melodic synths, knocked –something serious and the song had me at “Mr. Buster”. The thing that really blew me away though, was that baseline. I was mesmerized by the gritty sound, to the point where I became obsessed with mimicking it. I didn’t have the proper equipment to even come close to recreating the sound so I settled for sampling my alarm clock’s annoying synthetic-growl, using my Casio SK-1 keyboard which had a 1 ¼ second sample/ loop feature.
Producer Andre Ramone first Casio_SK-1 I didn’t realize it at the time but I was becoming a hip hop producer/ beat maker.

I spent the rest of my childhood engaged in rapping and learning production on a rudimentary set-up which consisted of a karaoke machine my mom bought me for Christmas when I was 12, my Casio Sk-1 and the good and terrible, Casio Rapman keyboard which was also a Christmas gift.
Producer Andre Ramone Casio Rapman
I perfected the art of finding drum-breaks on cassette tapes and using the ‘pause tape’ method to loop the isolated break. From there, I would let the drum loop play on the ‘play’ side of the karaoke machine tape deck, while recording the audio on the ‘record’ side of the machine. The karaoke microphone would be on at this point and I would play the melody part while holding the mic up against the keyboard speaker, thus transferring the audio from the keyboard to the overall mix, as a second track on top of the drums. When I finished, I would then pop the freshly recorded two-track beat – drum loop + melody — into the ‘play’ side of the karaoke machine’s tape deck and pop a blank tape in the ‘record’ side to repeat the process –adding the baseline.

Producer/ Beatmaker Andre Ramone

All that, just to get the music inside of me, out!

Upon graduating high school in 1999, computers became more accessible and thanks to the breaks on my, 1986 Honda Civic that failed and caused me to total my whip, I was able to get $2000 together, which I used to not only purchase a 1991 Ford Probe for $1000 to replace the vehicle but also to put $650 together with my Mom’s $650 to buy our first PC. Around that time, I met this cat Miguel who literally sat me down and showed me how to use then, Sonic Foundry’s Acid as well as how to mix, burn CD’s and to create labels for the CD’s. I took the knowledge he gave me and I was off to the races.

Using the name Andre Ramone aka Lyrical, I recorded my first CD Demo in the summer of 2000, which you can hear below.

Andre Ramone 2000 Demo – Intro:

Andre Ramone 2000 Demo – Emcees Where you At?:

Andre Ramone 2000 Demo – Opposite Forces

Andre Ramone 2000 Demo – Nemesis:

Then what?

It was a blessing to literally have someone go out of their way to take the time and show me how to produce and record this demo via the computer. I took the knowledge he gave me and I was off to the races but a lot of times – as artists – we want to focus on the music and can’t be bothered with the minutia of the music industry –we have better things to be doing. Fast-forward 15 years –how I wish I would have paid closer attention to the details. So yeah, I spent 15 years or so pursuing success in an industry that seemed to Dikembe Mutombo me at every turn. I always found myself either not in the game, or trying to Meadowlark Lemon the ball from half-court. I never so much as sniffed the paint.

I did find some success in music in the form of sync-licensing. In 2008, I signed a contract with a music publisher who began placing my music is various reality TV shows. The compensation wasn’t anything to get too excited about but there is something to be said about watching TV when suddenly, you hear a piece of music you composed in your bedroom – in pajama-pants, no less – playing in the background; it never gets old.

Andre Ramone Music featured in T.I.’s Road to Redemption #1 from Andre Ramone on Vimeo.

This is a clip from the first episode of T.I.’s Road to Redemption which featured a track I composed called “Candy”. Visit AndreRamone.com for more information on my music.

www.AndreRamone.com
www.twitter.com/andreramone
www.facebook.com/pages/Andre-Ramone/9514­922874

 

Andre Ramone Music featured in T.I.’s Road to Redemption #1 from Andre Ramone on Vimeo.

This is a clip from the first episode of T.I.’s Road to Redemption which featured a track I composed called “Candy”. Visit AndreRamone.com for more information on my music.

www.AndreRamone.com
www.twitter.com/andreramone
www.facebook.com/pages/Andre-Ramone/9514­922874

Andre Ramone Music featured in T.I.’s Road to Redemption #1 from Andre Ramone on Vimeo.

Music has never solely paid my bills and as a married father of two, it’s imperative that I am in a position to provide for my family so I have worked in the mortgage, and health insurance industries for most of my adult life, in customer service and account management/ sales roles. In 2012 – having already celebrated my dirty-thirty – I got this idea that it would be a good idea to join the Air Force as a reservist, so I did.

airman_cliff1Therein began the greatest challenge of my life that helped me learn how to set and execute goals strategically. When I started the journey, I was about 40 lbs overweight, stagnant in my career with the feeling of being trapped in a world where I was the antithesis of King Midas, entrenched in a hell of a rut with no hope of crawling out.

Through the process of preparing for military service, going through basic training and completing tech school, I dug down deeper than ever before and became reacquainted with the confident kid I last saw shortly after high school. The one who recorded the demo you heard.

Today?

Today I continue working in the insurance industry and as an Air Force Medic one weekend a month & two weeks a year all to support my family but I also find time to continue forging ahead towards this quest to become a full-time music producer. The dream I set out to fulfill as a 12-year-old has eluded me but I haven’t given up, though I’ve wanted to at times. When you know your calling it’s impossible to walk away.