KCRW DJ Aaron Byrd on the Making of the “Are You Ready” Ozomatli Remix
So the phone call from Bentley went a little something like this…”Nighthawk (an inside joke) do you want to do a remix for Ozomatli?” I was both humbled and terrified. I told El Jefe (Jason, another inside joke) “Man, thanks for thinking of me but I don’t know anything about making music. I mean, I’ve never produced music before.” He ensured me that in fact I do know a lot about producing and making music, “you have an ear for it.” Although I’ve heard similar words of encouragement before, the idea of making a remix for the world to hear was very intimidating.
While in this state of fear or flight, I decided to turn to one of those sources of encouragement –my good friend and fellow KCRW DJ Jeremy Sole. Jeremy has told me for years now to get into producing, so I knew he could probably ease my fears. Sure enough, he had some sound advice and he was so excited about the opportunity for me he offered to help get me started by being my engineer. He told me to figure out what type of sound and feeling I wanted to convey.
Jeremy gave me a homework assignment to gather songs and sounds that I like and might like to use. So we met one night around 9pm and left about 4am, both feeling as though magic had happened…music magic, that is. We had such great chemistry and just seemed to work so well with one another. I would try and describe a feeling, a sound, and Jeremy just seem to not only know exactly what I was talking about but also how to create it. We both had such a positive feeling after our first session that Jeremy said, “Man, I don’t want to pass you on to anyone else. I want to keep working on it with you.” So we did, and after three long 8 to 10 hour sessions, I made something I’m really proud of. Thank you Mr. Sole. The whole experience was fun! I really enjoyed the creative process.
Although, this Ozomatli remix was my first venture into the world of production it will not be my last.
Hear Aaron’s remix streaming online here