XEptional

XEptional

Mickey Boston and XEptional met in 2011, the rest is what you hear today. By age 15, the young prodigy was well on his way to crafting a gift for musicality and hiphop. By age 16 he was to produce “Tonka Truck Beat Down” which became the boombap success that it was in May 2012. Despite such givens, XEptional was already a master before the production of the Tonka Truck boombap classic that featured both Mickey Boston and Queens underground emcee Melo Malo.

XEptional, the young producer behind the beats had produced the boombap classic “Tonka Truck Beat Down” which featured Mickey Boston & Melo Malo as well as “Freedom” which featured Mickey Boston & Rico Blox.

Mickey Boston crossed XEptional’s work randomly as he was in search of a producer who would be able to capture the DJ Premier-like sound that he was looking for as an artist; that gritty sound with the East Coast New York-like edge to it. Oddly enough, he came across a young 16 year-old who carried with him a gift for sound and lyricism. The alliance quickly materialized into a brotherhood between the two artists.

Over many years, Mickey Boston Kovaks amassed large amounts of vinyls for samples however, with the unfortunate departure of DJ Warp – producer of “They Say HipHop” featuring graffiti stencil artist Regimental Oneton and “Metal Centipedes” featuring Bronx graffiti legend COPE2 and Ill Mestizo – the vinyls themselves rapidly collected dust and were neglected. After having met XEptional, hiphop was revivified and dusty vinyls were resurrected like the Phoenix, only to rise for new use in the gifted young hands of XEptional.

In truth, Mickey Boston immediately noticed, heard and saw the potential of a young 16 year-old producer by moniker XEptional and knew that his gift was a Golden touch that foreshadowed a sound adopted from a Golden era. While so many younger cats were into mainstream commercial urban music, XEptional stood out when mentioning his fondness for DJ Premier, 9th Wonder, Large Pro and the late J Dilla. In essence, the aspect of even mentioning names in great detail and even knowing of Nas’ Illmatic in such detail came as shock and admiration to Mickey Boston let alone his entourage.

The XEptional production spoke for itself. The production itself carried with it underpinnings of DJ Premier blended with a touch of Illmind and Just Blaze. Beyond this, there was the signature touch of a sixteen-year-old on every beat, the sound of that left the strong impression that one was hearing a melodious product catered from a new cat in the realm of underground hiphop.

The Birth of a Melody.

The homie XEptional started the art of beatmaking and sampling at the age of fifteen. The young Picasso proclaims that making a beat requires a creative process that is open-minded and free from the desire of emulating other producers’ styles. In essence, the cat claims that one needs to be divorced from the mentality and desire to sound like others. One has to develop a knack to be confident in oneself and be able to finderprint his/her very own design, style and identity.

After strongly emphasizing personalized stylization within one’s musical creative process, XEptional actually advocates for artists to simply be artists and not products of the nefarious commercial commercial culture, he feels we have too much of that and no need for it: “I’m about the organic style, try this, try that, mix this with that, and using your musical ear to hear what’s right and what’s not, sampling, searching, digging and knowing more and more about music…producers know so much about it…”

Undeniably, the young producer proclaims that the art sampling is an art that one must seek pleasure in, there is enjoyment in the aspect of going to record conventions and finding new gems that one can take home back to the lab – “its just magic, but it depends on the producer’s style too and every old song has its own taste of “vintagity” and that’s the magic about a sample, it makes you wanna chop it and put a beat to it…I always try to add more stuff to the beat and I try hard to put an XEptional signature, it took time to develop that…”

What is surprising is that XEptional is born and raised in Morocco where he currently resides at age 17 so finding new samples and vinyls can be a challenge. He finds much of his inspiration from far beyond the confines of hiphop like any other producer however, as a young man in the making, he acknowledges that there is much learning and much building and constructing to engineer for the future – “a producer always keeps his ears open for anything…”

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