The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, located in Washington D.C., continued its latest Hip Hop Season on Sunday, October 29th, with the highly anticipated event, Sound Architects: A Producer Conversation with Timbaland.
The event featured renowned music producer Timbaland, who engaged in a conversation with Grammy-nominated producer, DJ, college lecturer, music executive, social activist, and Kennedy Center Hip Hop Culture Council Member 9th Wonder about his extensive experience in the music industry, including his work with some of the biggest names in the business.
As the attendees entered the venue, Timbaland's greatest hits filled the air. The excitement in the room was palpable as guests eagerly anticipated the insights and behind-the-scenes stories from the iconic music producer's career. The atmosphere was electric, with a sea of heads nodding to the beat of the music.
The evening's moderator, 9th Wonder, a highly-regarded producer in his own right, took the stage with an air of confidence and professionalism. He skillfully guided the discussion while building anticipation for the main event. Finally, the man of the hour, Timbaland, made his grand entrance, greeted by a thundering standing ovation from the crowd. The stage was set for an unforgettable night of music and inspiration.
9th introduced Timbo by speaking on his nerves when both men worked on Jay-Z's classic, The Black Album since his song was after Timbaland. Over the next ninety minutes, Timbo dropped jewels about how his production style often blends elements of hip-hop, R&B, and electronic music, incorporating unusual beats, eclectic samples, and experimental soundscapes.
It's no secret that Timbaland's innovative approach to music production has helped him stand out as a creative force in the industry and has influenced many producers and artists. Thus, one of the most remarkable tidbits of the night was his avoidance of arrogance while receiving his flowers. There was a moment where 9th spoke on how to fire the remix of Destiny's Child Say My Name, and Tim countered with that's nothing but my spin on what DeVante from Jodeci would've done.
During the interview, Timbaland shared some interesting insights about his career in the music industry. He explained why Magoo left the industry, talked about his experiences working with Aaliyah and Justin Timberlake, and shared his perspective on Jay-Z's being the goat. It was touching to hear him speak about the late Static Major, whose talent is still missed today. Timbaland also mentioned his songwriting process and revealed that he avoided saving tracks, preferring to do everything in one take during his early days.
As the night began to wind down, before taking questions from the audience, Timbo spoke in depth about his current endeavors, including Tim I Do, finding talent on TikTok, Beat Club, and Verzuz (it's coming back soon, folks). As a longtime fan of Timbaland, who was in attendance, I can attest that the event was a huge success, drawing a large and enthusiastic crowd of music lovers.
Final Grade: A +