9th Wonder Recalls Making “Threat” Beat For Jay-Z

(AllHipHop News) This year will be the 10th anniversary of the release of Jay-Z’s seminal The Black Album. The names on the production credits for that LP read like a first-ballot induction list for a Hip-Hop Producers Hall of Fame. Timbaland, The Neptunes, Kanye West, Rick Rubin, Just Blaze, and DJ Quick all contributed tracks to what Jay presented as his “retirement album.”

There was also a relative newcomer that made the album as well, and since then North Carolina’s 9th Wonder has become one of the most sought after beatmakers in urban music.

Recently 9th sat down with Life+Times to discuss how he hooked up with HOVA and the process for making the R. Kelly sampled track “Threat” for The Black Album.

“‘A Woman’s Threat’ by R. Kelly is a very slow song,” says 9th. “I had to really challenge myself and say ‘ok how can I take this song and instead of time-stretching it, smush it and make it fit an upbeat tempo?'”

9th also talks about Jay requesting that he keep a “New York bounce” on the record.

“The New York bounce is when the swing is all the way up and it’s the boom-bap sound which was originated by DJ Premier and Pete Rock and Marley Marl,” explains 9th. “It’s kind of a derivative, or a play off of, or a descendant of ‘Impeach The President‘.”

Prior to working with Jay-Z on “Threat,” 9th Wonder was best well-known for producing Little Brother’s entire debut album The Listening that was released several months before The Black Album in 2003. 9th also produced every track on the Hip Hop trio’s (9th, Phonte, and Big Pooh) 2005 underground classic The Minstrel Show.

9th Wonder has also worked with Chris Brown, J. Cole, Erykah Badu, Kendrick Lamar, and many others. In 2012 he released two collaborative albums- The Solution with Buckshot of the Boot Camp Clik and The Final Adventure with Los Angeles emcee Murs.

[ALSO READ: Exclusive: Beatmaker and Educator 9th Wonder On His New Buckshot/Murs Albums and The HBCU Effect]

9th also released the remix album Black American Gangster in January. The 14-track project features Jay-Z’s vocals from the American Gangster LP over revamped soul samples from the 1970’s.

Watch the full Life+Times interview below:

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    9th Wonder is a dope ass producer & that Black American Gangster is straight FIRE!!!!!

  • Eli Pinilla

    9Th been doin his thing since he started…he pioneered the computer programs producersused today about 10 years ago. Little brother is classic music and hes working with big krit now. He also teaches hiphop at duke I beleive…….9th is that dude. Nothin but props to him

    • Q.

      Definitely one of the best beatmakers of all-time. I’d say 9th was the first to produce a classic Hip-Hop album using Fruity Loops. I used to mess with that program, and was blown away when I heard “The Listening.” I never thought “Threat” was one of his best beats…now I know why! It was a custom beat for Jay, not really 9th’s style. Met him a couple years ago… down to earth dude.

  • ItGoesDownINtheDM

    respect for nineth for working with underground mceez …. just wish his production skills and connection could bring them to the forefront … but never the less def appreciate the work 9th has done and is doing and will be doing in the future

  • Nik Johnson

    Thats beat was crazy though, “they call me threats- I been making threats since I been in kindergarten” hilarious!

    • Romia Blue

      Ced had me in TEARS first time I heard it
      “That’s right there nigga, nigga I’m wild..Nigga I keep trash bags with me…Never know when you gotta dump a nigga out…This sin-surr, this some sin-surr shyt right here” BOL!

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  • Mike Swiff

    Im gonna give him a pass…not gonna blow dude up…9th Wondah

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  • RockyMountainRaider

    That song was wack.

  • Young Goku

    You can never go wrong with 9th Wonder, One of my fav producers of all time!!