Behind The Track: Featuring Menace

This year at Lyrical Lemonade, I’m starting a feature section titled Behind The Track, specifically to shine a light on producers. A producer oversees all aspects of the creation of a song or album. The choice of song, choice of musicians, instruments, and vocalist(s) and how it all comes together. Your favorite artist makes dope music but without an amazing producer, your favorite song might not be so great after all. In this industry, the artist always receives credit for producing records that the world wants to listen to. However, as you start to learn more about the music business, you begin to understand how important having a dope producer is. Behind the track was created to give acknowledgment to producers that are behind our favorite songs. Whether the song might be big or small, producers deserve just as much credit as an artist.

The first producer I had the opportunity to learn more about is Adnan Khan aka Menace from Manchester, England. Menace is the face behind the 2016 mega multi-platinum smash hit ‘Panda’ by Designer. This record sold over 20 million copies and collected over 7 billion + streams and counting. The beat was so popular that artists such as Meek Mill, Anuel AA, DaddyYankee, Joyner Lucas, T-Pain, and more sampled his beat. The UK producer went on to sign a major deal with Stellar Songs and produce for London’s KSI and a NOLA’s infamous NBA Youngboy. Menace’s style of beats is widely known for his eclectic mash-up of electric, hard hitting, hard drums, 808s, and worldly melodies fused with speaker raging bass lines.

This month, I had the opportunity to learn more about the successful producer. Check out our interview with Menace below.

Lyrical Lemonade: How was it like growing up in England? When did you decide to become a producer and why?

Menace: I had a very humble upbringing. I didn’t have a lot of things a lot of kids my age had so that’s probably one of the things that got me started making music. I was also fond of music at a very early age, I don’t know but, I always had a connection with music. My dad was into music production but couldn’t pursue it because he had responsibilities to attend to. 

Lyrical Lemonade: What was the first beat you created and who was it for?

The very first beat I created was uploaded on YouTube and was a dirty south beat back in ‘08. It was wack lol but it laid down the foundation & I just kept getting better and better.

Lyrical Lemonade: You produced the smash hit “Panda” in 2016. This song changed the music scene and inspired freestyles from many artists. What was the vision behind this track? Did you know it was going to receive the attention it did?

I was heavily into DC comics at that time. My inspiration was the joker. Funny enough the beat was called ‘The Menace’ when I uploaded it on YouTube. I made that beat after a rough day at college & my part time job. I didn’t think much of it at that time. It performed really badly on my YouTube page. All of my beats were doing around 1 million + views and this one didn’t even manage to hit 10,000. God works in mysterious ways. It definitely has changed the industry on the way how hits are delivered. Old Town Road by Lil Nas X Is one example of the Panda formula.

Lyrical Lemonade: Is it difficult for you to make artists try new beats when they are so comfortable with certain types of beats?

A lot of artists don’t like change so I sometimes have to push them to think outside the box. I’d rather be in the studio with the artist so I can really understand what direction they are going & not just make a beat for them but, A&R them too.

Lyrical Lemonade: Has there ever been a time when you create a dope beat and multiple artists fight over it? If so, how were you able to decide who gets what?

It all depends how talented they are. I prefer the underdogs of the industry because they are the most talented & they are likely to take more risks with their music.

Lyrical Lemonade: For up and coming producers, what is the best way to get your beat out there?

Relationship’s are a must in this industry. You don’t have any relationships, it doesn’t matter how talented you are. You won’t get far.

Lyrical Lemonade: UK has been known for a little while now for their drill scene. How do you feel about the drill scene right now and have you created drill beats? If not, will you create some in the future?

I think Drill is in a space where we have all sorts of different types of drill music. I’ve produced a lot of drill music which is out or coming out. One drill record I produced is called KSI – JIMMY NEUTRON, which appeared on his #1 album – All Over The Place.

Lyrical Lemonade: You created many amazing records. Which one would be your favorite? Have you ever hated a beat but later on you grew to love it?

All the time, it depends how I’m feeling that day. When you have ear fatigue from making music all day. Everything sounds bad, but once I have fresh ears the next day. I can think much better and tweak a few things.

Lyrical Lemonade: Besides from yourself, who are some skilled producers on the up and coming that Lyrical Lemonade should keep their eye out on?

There’s so many dope producers. I can’t even pick one.

Lyrical Lemonade: What can we expect from you this year? What do you hope to accomplish in your career down the line?

Being the best in my line of work. Building a crazy legacy, for the next generation of producers. Despite having crazy setbacks where I’m from, I still managed to beat the odds & having those crazy accolades what all that matters!

Stayed tuned for our next featured producer.