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BeatTips Architecht Essence: Large Professor

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One of the Most Important Beatmaking Architects of All Time

By AMIR SAID (SA’ID)

In hip hop/rap music, like any other art tradition, you are what you study. You’re the sum of all the people and things in hip hop culture that you revere. It’s what I like to call your “approach compass” (in that it dictates how you move). From your philosophy about arrangement and sound (rhythm, drums, bass, melody, harmony), to your ideas about rhyme styles and flows, you are a testament of what you aim for. The deeper you reach into the core of hip hop, the more architect essence you get. It’s that simple really. Hip hop has never flowed from the outside in. Instead, hip hop has always flowed from the inside out.

This understanding isn’t the jaded wisdom of someone stuck on nostalgia. No. Yearning for nostalgia is something reserved for those caught somewhere between a shaky level of loyalty to what hip hop, at its core, has always represented and the prospect of keeping up with the now, the essence of “hip hop” be damned.

Because of his steadfast devotion to the core of hip hop, this week’s BeatTips Architect Essence award goes to Large Professor, producer/MC, and co-founder of one hip hop’s/rap’s most important groups, Main Source.

In 1991, at just 18 years old, one could argue that Large Professor was already in his prime. With a couple of years of production work under his belt (some properly credited, some of it ghost-made), he was already one of the most important beatmaking architects in the tradition. And the thing that shoots out the most about this was that, here you had this teenage kid who revered what came before him. An absolute respect for the culture as it was built up and passed on. Large Professor’s music, influence, and overall contributions to hip hop are solidified. History’s going to treat him good. Trust me…

The music and video below is presented here for the purpose of scholarship.

Mains Source – “Just Hangin’ Out” (Produced by Large Professor)


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About Author

Amir Said (aka Sa’id) is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of BeatTips. A writer, publisher, and beatmaker/rapper from New York, Said is the author of a number of books, including ‘The BeatTips Manual,’ ‘The Art of Sampling,’ ‘Ghetto Brother,’ and ‘The Truth About New York.’ He is also a recording artist with a number of music projects, including his latest album 'The Best of Times.' Follow him on Twitter at: @amirsaid and @BeatTipsManual