Nato has been working hard, man. Take a look at his website (7nato.com), he’s pumping out a lot of quality work. From Komrade’s album, Fallen Empire, to the Stompdown Killaz crew out in Vancouver, he’s getting things done.
What does a producer really do though? I had heard people talk about it in the industry, but I didn’t know what the hell it meant. Nato set it out for me, “As far as a producer’s duties, it varies from person to person, artist to artist, genre to genre… Typically a hip hop producer will make a beat and sell it”. Nato isn’t a just a producer though, he’s also an engineer. He’s the guy that takes the raw audio files, cuts them, tweaks them, cleans them up and gives them that final quality polish you hear on the CD.
You can tell he cares about his work, too. He told me he likes to get involved as much as he can without getting in the way. “As a producer/engineer”, he said, “ I have the opportunity to impact the performance of an artist over my productions (beats)”. Nato’s the guy that will take a word or two out, maybe change the voice a bit, help with rythm and ptich. He likes to “let [the] artist do their thing” while still giving some suggestions so they can get the best product possible.
It’s good to hear he’s taken this on full time now. Taking that leap from doing something in your spare time and moving it to the forefront of your life is tough. He tells me he’s trying to keep busy but “It’s up and down”. We get that. We totally get that. Being a small business just starting out is rough. With Flavor, we’re just like Nato. One week you’ve got people talking about you, talking to you and things are getting done. Then the next week you’re scrambling to get any kind of income. But you know what? I think he’s going to do just fine.
I like Nato. I like him because of what he brings to the table. The music he created with Touch was from an era of Hip Hop that was so powerful. Every song they made had beats and lyrics with impact. Sometimes it feels like we’ve lost touch with that kind of passion.
With the vets we have in this city though, guys like Marlon from Politic Live, Touch and Nato, I think we’re going to be able keep it alive. There’s a lot of respect for the veterans of Hip Hop in E-Town and the current generation of rising stars is showing that by working closely with them. I’m damn glad Nato is one of those vets, passing on his talent and expertise.
- Wade Stanley Earl Tompkins, Co-Founder, Flavor Clothing