Boogie: How did you get involved in music?
Kevin Rudolf: My mother was a singer and I had grown up around music. She would drag me out to bars as a kid in NYC and we would watch bands play. But I was about 11 or 12 when I actually walked into a music store with my grandfather and saw an electric guitar right in front of me. I was more interested in pretending to play it than actually learning how to play it. He said he would buy it for me if I would take lessons.
Boogie: So from there what happened? How did your career in the industry progress?
Kevin Rudolf: I played in a few local bands then I got a keyboard and computer and started writing and producing and learning how to make records myself.
Boogie: How exactly did you meet Timbaland? And how did you come to work together?
Kevin Rudolf: I had met Jimmy Douglass a while back and I ran into him on the street on day. I said I wanted to watch Tim work so I ended up at the studio that night. I would do that every few weeks for a while and I always brought a guitar just in case. I wasn't trying to get on or even make money. I just wanted to watch the process of making records. The first record I played on was "The Jump Off" from Lil’ Kim which ended up being one of the biggest hip hop records of that year.
Boogie: What a crazy coincidence to meet Jimmy D on the street of all places. So after awhile of being in the studio did Tim ask you to play for him or how did that process work?
Kevin Rudolf: Yea, Tim pretty much does everything on the fly. I would just play over the top of the track and Tim would just say "plug him in" and we would do it like that for a while. Sometimes he wouldn't be there and I would just record with Jimmy D and give him a few choices. Sometimes he would hum a part and I would follow that.
Boogie: So nothing is really planned out? It's just right there creating on the spot?
Kevin Rudolf: Yea I've never really been in a situation where anything was planned out. It's all about a vibe from the original beat to the writing of the song to putting in the additional synth and guitar parts.
Boogie: Based on that spontaneity then, are there additional takes or do you just record as soon as the idea comes and use that as a final product?
Kevin Rudolf: Nope. No additional takes. Once they idea works I do one take and they chop it up and take what they need or sometimes leave until mixing and see what works then.
Boogie: Tim and Jimmy D obviously liked what you had to offer as you continued to work with them throughout the years, what was your favorite track you were a part of?
Kevin Rudolf: For some reason I really like "The Jump Off " by Lil’ Kim probably because it was the first record I had worked on with them and it was on the radio and in the clubs literally a week after I worked on it. It’s rare in this business to get that kind of instant gratification.
Boogie: You've been working with Tim for years, how do you think he's changed as a producer? His sound, his work in the studio, his work ethic etc.
Kevin Rudolf: He's always had a strong work ethic and he keeps it moving and he works in volume and I've learned from that. Not to get too precious about anything which is a mistake that a lot musicians make early on. As far as his sound goes, he's always had the sickest drums ever but he's branched out with more of the 80s synth sounds and textures in the last couple of years which I really like.
Boogie: What's next for you? What new projects do you have going on?
Kevin Rudolf: I just singed with Cash Money/Universal Republic as an artist and I'm finishing up my solo album. We are shooting the video for the first single called "Let It Rock" featuring Lil’ Wayne in a few weeks. And in meantime I'm working on a few more songs for the album as well as producing more tracks for Lil Wayne and other artists in the Cash Money family.
Boogie: Who's on the album? You mentioned Lil Wayne, who else? Is it all produced by you?
Kevin Rudolf: There will be a couple more features but I can't reveal any more names right now. Most of it is produced by me but there are a few co productions with friends of mine.
Boogie: When does the album get released?
Kevin Rudolf: The single should be on the radio in a couple weeks and the album which is called “In The City” will be released at the end of October.