Despite holding production credits on tracks released by Main Attrakionz, Sir Michael Rocks, Gangsta Boo, and Chris Travis, local producer Eric Dingus remains a board tweaker behind the scenes. That is until last week, when the team behind one of the most popular artists in music decided to put the 18-year-old Austinite on watch.
On Sunday, Nov. 17, those who handle the blog belonging to Drake, all-world rapper of the melancholy, posted a remix Dingus constructed of the Toronto rapper’s “Worst Behavior,” a hard-nosed, antagonistic track off September’s Nothing Was the Same, Drake’s third, which premiered a video Nov. 11.
“I was just trying to make it less intense,” Dingus told the Chronicle. “With remixes, I like to give the song a completely different vibe than the original. You try to make it so that it doesn’t fit [with the original]. If it fits, what’s the point of doing it? Then it’s like the original.
“I was just trying to give it a happier chord progression and give it a different vibe.”
Seeing as the track’s creator wasn’t previously associated with the extended Drake camp, which usually consumes the real estate on the blog, October’s Very Own, the whole episode caught locals in the greater scene by surprise. Dingus says the connection’s been in the works for months, ever since a friend’s girlfriend connected with Drake’s brand manager, Oliver El-Khatib, who then heard Dingus.
“They wanted to keep on hearing stuff, so we kept sending it,” explains Dingus. “The remix was completely random, though. I’d made the remix that day, the same day Oliver, who I hadn’t talked to in months, followed me on Instagram. It was sort of like, ‘Oh, he’s still watching us.’”
Dingus sent Oliver the remix, which the local deems unofficial since he didn’t have Drake’s a cappella vocal track to work over, and it was on the Internet shortly thereafter.
“No PR or publishing behind it,” adds Dingus. “It just got all over.”
Since posting, Dingus has seen his Soundcloud page attract 72,000 plays, about 60,000 more than he estimates it would’ve received without the big-time boost.
“The second most played song I have is a Kanye remix I did when Yeezus came out, and that only got 25,000 plays,” he says. Drake’s thrown him into another league.
Keeping momentum going once the buzz dies down lies ahead. Dingus mentions production on a solo EP from League of Extraordinary Gz member Sandman, and hints at a “secret” project” that he hopes gets announced this week.
“That’s all I can say, but it’s been in the works for a while. It’s not at all a reaction to the Drake remix.”
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