(AllHipHop Features) Those music fans familiar with classic Diplomats songs like "Dipset Anthem," "Killa Cam," "Who I Am," and "This Is Jim Jones" are aware of the impact the producers of those tracks had on the sound of Hip Hop circa 2003/2004. The sped-up soul samples used by The Heatmakerz production team helped define a rap era.
Heatmakerz have now teamed with another New York based emcee to hopefully set the game on a new course once again. Rsonist and Wayno are serving as executive producers for Joell Ortiz's third studio album House Slippers. The Slaughterhouse member and the platinum producers are tapping some of Hip Hop's hottest beat makers and rhyme spitters for the upcoming Penalty Entertainment release.
The duo spoke about Joell's next LP, whether a Dipset reunion could be happening soon, some of their most memorable studio moments, and more in an exclusive interview with AllHipHop.com.
You guys are working on Joell Ortiz's next album. How did you first connect with Joell?
Wayno: A good friend of mine HirOshima gave me a call to tell me Joell Ortiz was in the building. So we went downstairs and linked up. We started a conversation, then he came upstairs and listened to some music. That was it. We started working the next day or two.
You’re working as the executive producers for the album. What other producers offered tracks?
Rsonist: !llmind is producing on the record. Frequency and a producer by the name of Prophet. And Sha Money XL.
Joell just dropped the video for the title track. Does the “House Slippers” single represent the direction the project is taking musically?
Wayno: Definitely, it’s a strong album. It’s a serious album. There are a lot of fun moments on there as well. It’s going to be a well-rounded album for fans and for engaging new fans as well.
I saw that B.o.B. is going to be on there. Have you set up any other features?
Rsonist: B.o.B is on the new record after “House Slippers” called “Save My Life.” Maino is on the album. Our artist Mally Stakz is on two records on the album. He’s actually on the first two main singles. And an artist by the name of Kaydence.
Wayno: And Lee Carr and Slaughterhouse.
Mally is signed to you. Is that a label situation or management?
Rsonist: It’s actually a label situation. His manager is my homeboy by the name of Chance.
Are there other artists that you currently have signed?
Rsonist: We’re working with an artist named I.D.R out of Canada. He’s a pop singer/DJ. We work with another artist by the name of GiGi from the U.K., and we have Mally Stakz.
[ALSO READ: 5 & Done: Mally Stakz]
Having had the chance to talk to a lot of artists and producers, some say Hip Hop is appreciated differently overseas than it is here in the U.S. Do you feel the same way?
Wayno: Hip Hop is appreciated here, but overseas they appreciate classic, 90’s Hip Hop. But they do appreciate music a great deal overseas. Even an artist without a really big name can go overseas and tour. As long as you have fans and good music, somebody over there will like it.
The Heatmakerz played a big role in the New York Hip Hop sound in the early 2000’s working with Dipset. What’s your take on the city’s sound at the moment?
Rsonist: I actually like the way New York is going right now, because it’s a lot of different things going on. It’s not just the typical “New York Sound”. It’s diversity going on. You might have somebody with the classical old sound like a Joey Bada$$. Then you might have a rapper like a Troy Ave. Then you might have a Joell Ortiz or a Mally Stakz.
It’s a bunch of different sounds, but they’re all from New York and it’s all accepted. I kind of like the place New York is in right now, because we’re not as closed-minded as we used to be to a lot of different sounds.
The Dipset members have been talking about doing a reunion album for a while. Are you interested in doing another Diplomats album with the whole crew?
Rsonist: I can’t wait. I think the city needs that. The city might need a shot in the back right now. That juice. That boost.
Do you think that’s possible in the near future?
Rsonist: Anything is possible. As long as all the members are still here and we all still kind of keep in contact, anything is possible.
Last year you did a track for Kanye West’s album. What happened to that record?
Rsonist: I don’t know what happened to it. We sold a record to him for the Yeezus album. He picked it early when he first announced he was doing another album. Everything was squared away. We got paid for the track. We signed paperwork. I don’t know if he went in a different direction or if he’s going to use it on a later project. I’m not even sure.
You guys traditionally have soulful production. Yeezus had a more industrial sound. Do you think maybe - like you said - he could just be saving it for something else? Maybe it just didn’t fit the album?
Rsonist: Yeah, I think so, because the record we gave him was like an “Otis” type of feel - “Otis” on steroids. It didn’t really fit the Yeezus album. It was kind of in the same lane as “Bound 2,” but it was more action going on.
You’ve had the chance to work with a lot of legendary emcees. Do you have any particular memorable moments from a studio session that stand out?
Rsonist: I was in Sony Studios, and I was recording with Lil Flip. This might have been around 2003/2004. I came out to go to the bathroom, and Michael Jackson was coming through the hallway. They had the lights off, and it was just a crazy scene to me. Michael Jackson is the one person I become an instant fan for. That was something I went home to tell my mother about. That was such a memorable studio experience, because most of the days are the same. But that was something special.
Wayno: I have some really memorable experiences with Fred The Godson just last year with him writing that Contraband album. He writes in this cryptic, chicken scratch code. No one, but him can decipher it. But just watching him put together words - I’ve never seen anything like that in my life.
What else do you have on the horizon?
Rsonist: A bunch of things. We have, obviously, the Joell Ortiz project. We have the Mally Stakz single out now on iTunes - “Lil Boy.” We have Alexandra Burke. She’s an artist out of the U.K. We did something for 2 Chainz's new album that he’s working on. A group by the name of Monroe. They’re Teddy Riley’s daughters. Abigail Breslin, she’s an actress. We’re working on her EP.
Wayno: And Uncle Murda.
Rsonist: A bunch of different people. Jim [Jones] is in here, so we’ll be working with Jim in a second.
Joell Ortiz’s House Slippers album is scheduled for release later this year.