Soundcloud will forever be one of the best streaming services. There’s something to be said for the music being released on the platform and its unique sound and production style. You can find remixes and chopped & screwed renditions of some of the hottest chart-topping tracks and there’s (undoubtedly) a vibe of automatic acceptance since everyone’s just doing their own damn thing.
The birth of Somwaba’s Soundcloud Select was derived from the idea of simply selecting some of the standout acts that are making dope sounds, to chat with them about who they are, how they make beats and what inspires them.
On a recent deep dive and exploration of sounds, we came across Kryone and each click on his profile introduced us to more of his music and his self-founded label, Team Oneself. Kryone is based in Morelia, Mexico and describes his music as “future beats” and “chill baile.” He started off as just another guy who truly loves music-making after years of being exposed to different genres. When the time came, he founded his own label that focused on all things he cares about: “beats, art and culture.”
Currently, Kryone fronts 12 artists plus himself on Team Oneself, giving them a place to call home for their music and a safe place to create the sounds they really want.
Check out the exclusive Somwaba interview with Kryone below and consider yourself officially acquainted with yet another Cool Sounds creator.
How would you like to introduce yourself?
I’m Kryone from Morelia, México, I’m a producer, beatmaker, and owner of Team Oneself.
What’s one lasting memory you have with music and connecting to the musical language of the world?
My father has a very weird musical taste, he used to play music at home, from regional Mexican music to Italian pop, classical and Chilean rap, I think that woke my interests on music, especially with hip-hop.
The first artists [I liked] were Tiro de Gracia from Chile, Cypress Hill, Bone Thugs & Harmony, and Wu-Tang Clan. Before the internet era, it was hard to get rap music in Mexico. Smino and GoldLink are probably my favourite rappers right now.
When did you start developing artistically?
I used to rap with my friends in high school just for fun and then I started to make beats. That was the moment and it’s now been more than 10 years!
What equipment do you use?
I use an AKAI MPD 24, UC33E, AKAI MPK49, Roland SP-404 and Ableton Live.
Tell me about your process of creating a beat.
I usually spend one day or a whole week thinking what kind of beat or track I want to make, or how I’m going to make it, then I go to the studio and I produce it in a couple hours. That’s how I make my music. I’m not that kind of producer that is trying to make beats every day because I don’t have enough time.
What else are you doing outside music making and label tasks that keep you busy?
Sadly I can’t live off [just] music right now. I studied business administration and I’m a dental technician; I spend my mornings in the laboratory making teeth and my nights in my studio making beats and working on my label. Sometimes I go on mini-tours and play in different cities from Mexico. I would love to make music my full-time job one day.
When did you start noticing that your beats were more than just a fun hobby you enjoyed?
I think beats were more than “just fun” when I started to get paid for it, when I started to get listeners and when I was invited to important festivals and shows in Mexico with very hyped national and international artists.
How did Team Oneself come to be?
I wanted to create a community of people with similar sounds to mine. I love the idea of sharing ideas, projects and collaborating. That’s why I created Team Oneself.
How did you find artists and “people with similar sounds” to yours?
Digging on Soundcloud, I started to listen to new producers or DJ’s on Soundcloud influenced by Latin music and future beats and I found most of the team, but some others were recommended to me. For example, VHOOR introduced Fungi to me and I signed him. We all knew each other from Soundcloud before Team Oneself, but now we are all friends. We have a secret group on Facebook and some chats on WhatsApp and we share ideas, projects or just have fun.
What do you hope to achieve with your label?
My idea is to create a lifestyle and a big movement that everyone can be a part of. Make people from all over the world feel connected to our music and make them feel inspired by our work.
You tweeted that “music blogging in Mexico is dead.” What would you like to see, how could the city improve on showcasing its musicians?
Music blogging in Mexico used to be a powerful tool for Mexican underground artists but most of those just disappeared or changed their context. Now it’s all about fashion or gossip. I would like to see more interviews, reviews, news, and exclusives. It would be great for the music community in Mexico.
Naturally, as an artist, you have moments where you feel stumped or as if you’ve hit a wall. Have you found any ways to reset your perspective to get back on track to creating?
I used to push myself a lot. I used to make beats all day and I [used to] get frustrated a lot, that’s why now I take my time and think about what I want to do before I sit down in front of my PC.
Working with my Team Oneself mates inspire me a lot and when I feel blocked I take a break to support them and then I go back to my own music [more] inspired and motivated.
Who are you listening to right now?
I’ve been listening to Melting Pot Records, they have tons of dope boom bap albums, HIEDRAH Club de Baile, Omar Duro, Monte Booker and Lucid Monday artists.
Who’s a producer you admire and why?
Dimitri Grimm, also known as Dimlite. He’s my biggest influence because he is super talented. During his career, he has produced from jazz to hip-hop, psychedelic rock, musique concrete or IDM. Also, he can sing, play instruments and he’s an amazing sound designer- he’s a genius!
What’s your philosophy when it comes to being a producer, owning a label and working in the music industry?
Grow up, share, take it seriously and experiment, but have fun in the process. That’s my philosophy.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thanks to all the people who support my projects and thanks to Somwaba for keeping it real!