Mike Martinez, Will Taubin - Quality Art Paintings

In 2022, I made the transition from producing beats on FL Studio for 12 years to producing on the MPC. In my endless digging through tutorials to learn my new hardware, I came across some old tutorial videos on YouTube by Will Taubin.

I was thoroughly impressed with his beatmaking skills, and through the course of devouring any of his content I could find, I learned he was an early 2000’s avant-garde Hip Hop legend. A member of johnny23 Records, he produced for the likes of JAKPROGRESSO, Boxguts, and LoDeck among many more. Aside from that, he was a pro BMX rider as well! I had to track this guy down.

Through some borderline stalking aided by the magic of the internet, I was able to reach out to Will and explain how I’d found him and that I was super impressed by his skill and story. I suggested we work on a project, and this EP was the result. We emailed tracks back and forth, as I was in Florida and Will in New Jersey at the time, and pieced together this 7-song offering.

That fall, Will was actually in Florida not far from me visiting family when Hurricane Ian happened to strike our coast. The day after the hurricane, I ended up driving down a debris-ridden A1A from Flagler Beach to Daytona Beach and scooped him up. We spent the day building and making beats. We even ended up doing it again the following day before he went back up north, and recorded a single called “Storm Surge” with my partner Jezus Borgia (Available everywhere!).

This EP, “Quality Art Paintings” had been sitting done for a while with the exception of needing some DJ cuts on one song and audio clips on another. I happened to have a DJ, the legendary DJ Irv Nyce from the Zulu Nation, in my lab working on another project and I asked him if he would mind dropping the finishing touches on the track. He was happy to help, and then it was on me to add those pesky audio clips to the other song. Which I was also happy to do, with the finish line so clearly in sight.

Just like that, this project from back in 2022 is now complete. All beats produced by Will Taubin, with features from Jezus Borgia, Walt Grizzly & DJ Irv Nyce. Enjoy!

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