Chris The Glove Taylor Interview

I2G has a special treat for everyone out there. Chris The Glove Taylor stopped by for a exclusive interview. If you don’t know who that is ya might want to do your homework. The legendary DJ/producer talks about his work with Ice T, Ruthless Records, Death Row, working with Eazy E and Dr. Dre, Po Broke N Lonely and so much more, check it out. Let us show you how the west coast rocks.

Illuminati 2G is here with Chris The Glove Taylor. How’s it going?

Going great, how about you?

Good. With those unfamiliar with your start, tell me a little bit about how you got your start in music and who are some of your musical influences out there coming up.

Oh wow, I got my start in music 1983, I became a DJ and basically taught myself how to DJ. I had one person, Tony Joesph, that showed me the ends and outs and he was the only person I knew from the east coast that had any understanding of DJing.

He taught me a few things and everything else I learned how to do on my own. I taught myself how to scratch, mix, blend and all those good old things. After that I moved along and kind of conquered Los Angeles by doing alot of house parties and moving on to the bigger clubs.

I ended up at this one club called Club RadioTRON, where I pretty much got my nickname The Glove and it got me in the movie Breakin and Breakin 2, hooked up with Ice T and a whole lot of big things branched off from that.

That actually leads right into my next question. What was it like working with Ice T back at that time and being in the Radio Crew and being one of the founding pioneers on the west coast as far as DJing is concerned?

Well to answer the first part of that question, working with Ice T was great, that guy is a fun guy (laughs). Everytime we got together it was a blast and as far as being a founding member of the Radio Crew and a west coast DJ, you know you really don’t know you are doing all that when you are doing it.

But as I look back on it, it was really a great learning experience and I am proud to be a part of that.

After that, you then started to work with Ruthless Records with the group Po Broke N Lonely. At that time for that R&B group, that was a pretty groundbreaking group and style that you had. Tell me a little bit about your time in being with the group and being with Ruthless.

Oh wow, yeah the whole thing with Ruthless was also a great learning experience. Me coming from a DJing background, I wanted my music to be in the club all the time. I wanted it in the clubs with BBD and all those other groups that were out at the time.

But I wanted our sound to have more of a edge lyrically as well as musically. A friend of mine introduced me to Dr. Dre, I would say around 1989, and its funny because we never met even though we were coming up at the same time in LA, he was over in the Compton area and I was on the west side.

Actually I was the first one to get a platinum record out here for Breakin. Me and Ice T, Breakin sold 4 million so we were the first to go platinum before everybody else. Me and Dre met, and I told him about my concept of the group and I let him hear a few things. Him and Eazy jumped right on it because Ruthless did not have a R&B group at the time.

RC, myself and Mike Lynn we just had another party making those songs man and we did alot of things that people are not aware of. We have alot of stuff that I like to call the Lost Sessions, I probably have…., shoot, 40, 50 songs that no one has ever heard that would still be relevant today if you heard them.

Moving along though, when we were just trying to break loose with Ruthless through Epic, there became a problem. We discovered a issue financially that Eazy and Dre were gonna fall into. A friend of mine was looking over the contracts and told Dre that Eazy was screwing him on his contract and not playing him what he was owed.

Dre and Eazy fell out and that left us in limbo. Without a unified front to push our music, we was just kind of stuck there swinging in the wind. We decided to leave Ruthless along with Dre, and I worked with Dre on the Chronic in the meantime and we also worked on a song called The Sex Is On, which was on the Deep Cover soundtrack.

Deep Cover was the first release from Death Row actually. From there, we finally got our release from Ruthless after Eazy E passed and then he went on and signed with Atlantic Records. That is where we did our biggest work, Twisted and all those other songs, those were on Atlantic.

Like you said earlier, Dre then leaves Ruthless and goes to Death Row. Tell me a little bit of the differences working on Death Row as oppossed to working with Dre at Aftermath.

Well I will tell you the thing that was definitely different on Aftermath then Death Row was you was not seeing the beatings (laughs). There was alot of beatings going on at Death Row and none of that was happening at Aftermath. At Aftermath it was strictly business and at first I was not interested in joining up but the lead singer of Po Broke N Lonely, RC, convinced me to come on along and jump on the train.

I agreed and started out as a staff producer and co collaborator with Dre as I always was. It was good, interesting times in my life and I believe that the first album, Aftermath Presents, it sold like a million copies, that album was unheralded.

Musically there was alot of good stuff on there and we reached out and did some different things too. The most that I can say about that time period was that it was another instrumental learning period leading up to Chronic 2001 and everything after that.

Dre at that time did not work on alot of albums outside of the label, even when he was on Death Row. The one album that he did do was The Firm, which from the outside looking in had crazy expectations that almost seemed unattainable. What are your thoughts and opinions working on that album and memories that you have in working with The Firm?

I will tell you this, Nas and AZ, those are some great dudes man. Nature too, but I’ll tell you the thing that did The Firm wrong was that their first release was the wrong release. When they came out with Firm Biz, that was not what people were checking out for. When Phone Tap came out, it resurrected that whole project and if they would have released Phone Tap first, all the expectations would have been achieved.

People would have been like woah this is what they sound like, I can’t wait to get the album. That record was dead in the water before Phone Tap and that single pushed it to platinum on the strength of just that one single. It was a real heavy political thing and the releases were chosen by Steve Stoute. He was trying to push his crew, The Trackmasters, and they wanted a more traditional east coast sound and the first single to not be a Dr. Dre one with a more west coast song.

We totally redesigned what we was doing before that project. Our music was all mob music, we was not trying to be east coast or west coast, it was just about the mob. Firm was a family and we was coming with mafia music and that is where my mind was, being the creator of Phone Tap and all that mafia music on there, that came from my mind and Dre’s mind.

We sat there and brainstormed on a ton of stuff. Bud’da was there and Mel-Man was there as well, on the other side they had Trackmasters and L.E.S. as well. If you really listen to the records you can almost hear the difference in production styles and values throughout. It does not have a cohesive sound from beginning to end the way it should have been.

Even if you look on the back of the album, there was like a thousand logos on it. You had every record label in the world on there (laughs).

Right.

You had all these strange deals, Foxy had to have her label and logo on there, so on and so forth, Cormega was not on the record because him and Nas fell out so we ended up going with Nature. Nature is a beast on his own, but that album really was not a fair place for him to catapult from because people were expecting Cormega. We had fun making it and we did the album all in Miami, because back then they were not coming to the west coast and we was not going to New York so we did it in a neutral site. Kind of like how they do the Super Bowl (laughs).

It was great times man. I had nothing but good times doing all of that stuff.

So basically now after that album, you transition into Dre’s sequel, Chronic 2001, which I consider the best sequel to a debut album in hip hop history. What was it like linking back up with the artists that you worked with at Death Row and then linking up with the fresh, new talent, Timebomb, Knocturnal, Hittman?

Hittman was great and he did a majority of Dre’s lyrics on that album. He was a writer in A LOT of those raps and that is why Hittman did not come out. He was supposed to be released as a solo artist but people would have said that he sounded like Dre. Dre kind of swallowed him up because he needed him for that album and after he got through with him, you hardly ever heard anything from him.

On each album, I have a signature song on there that I produced or did work on. For instance, on the Chronic, I did Stranded On Death Row, on Chronic 2000, I did XXXPlosive, on The Firm I did Phone Tap. On Snoop’s album, I produced Doggy Dogg World and all of those were pretty serious singles.

At the time I was not getting the…, I mean people always knew what I did, I would get phone calls from different celebrities or people that were in hip hop or in the business that knew. But the credits were not in print like it should have been, but I never had a problem with it. I always compare it to a college education, you learn and then you go out and do your thing.

In between that though, I produced Hello for NWA on Cube’s album. That was a comeback for them at the time. It was a big record out here on the west coast but working with all those guys, I got to say man, it’s like when people play the Lakers, they bring their best game. All these cats ALWAYS came with it, even guys like Hittman that you never heard of.

I don’t know what is taking Dre so long to come with this next album though. This is a great sequel, but if you have 9 years to create your sequel…, you got to remember the first Chronic came out in 1992, 2001 came out in 2000 and Detox is still not out and we are nearing 20 years since the first one came out.

Dre has only done 2 albums but I expect that this next one…, some kind of way his albums meet expectations.

Absolutely. So what caused you then to leave Aftermath and what have you been up to since then?

I wanted to strike out on my own and I wanted to show that I am a great producer without Dre. People would always say oh you are great when you are with Dre, and that’s cool, I mean Shaq & Kobe, when you are part of a team, you use teamwork. But I wanted to get out on my own and get out of the whole umbrella.

Eminem came out and his lyrics…, I used to have to listen to my music in my car and study it. I had a young daugther at the time who would repeat everything that she heard and I wanted to get away from the words and gangsta rap can be very sick and sinister. I felt like at that time, that is not the direction I wanted my music to go.

So I decided to step away, and I also had a medical situation and I had to have brain surgery, so that also made me step back for a bit, and I also got involved in television. I started composing for different shows, but alot for the UPN Network back then. I did all the shows on there, I did Girlfriends, The Parkers, The Game, not to mention network shows, Medium, NCIS, you know all over the place.

It was better for me because I got away and I was able to put together a different, but more stable type of life. I ended up meeting my future wife and having another child and ready got core family values and that is what happened to me and got me to step away from that.

You are currently working with a artist named Young Pistol. What makes Young Pistol different from the artists that you have worked with in the past?

Aww Pistol! I am actually working with another cat, Pimpin Ten aka John Wayne. Young Pistol is actually my prodigy and I will be honest with you, he reminds me of Kurupt. I think he has a million lyrics and he will freestyle anybody and go in a circle until everyone is done with lyrics and just keep going.

That is what I like about him and cats are not doing that anymore. You meet artists and they are about one thing, they players, partying, banging, and he is not about all of that. Even though he grew up in the jungle, the hood, he is a good kid. Almost seems misplaced and he should have been born on the east coast.

Being that you have worked with so many west coast artists, what are your feelings on this supposed new west vs old west rivalry that is going on?

I love the new west, I don’t know where the term came from but I like it. New, young talent infused into west coast hip hop, but I don’t know the whole old west, new west seems to me that there is some bitterness coming from the older guys that are trying to not let go or something, I don’t know man.

When you are coming from the perspective of a producer, you can produce old west and new west. If you are a rapper and you have what people consider a old west sound, that is what it is. I can see Ice Cube’s point also and I know he felt disrespected but also these kids grew up listening to us and I think they have respect now.

They may not always say it but alot of them know they would not be rapping if they daddy was not listening to Ice Cube, NWA or Ice T, King T. They would not even know how to make these records and in LA there is a studio on every street because we showed people how to put a studio in their house.

When I was coming up there was no studios accessible like it is now. I had to go the valley to work in a studio, so yeah I believe in the new west and I want to see someone come out and shine. Like how Drake blew up and now he is everywhere, I want someone from LA to come up and be that.

I mean this is LA, this is not some small market, we need someone that will stand up and represent us. New west, old west, it does not matter to me, they just need to be tight.

Do you see any new artists out there now that can step in and take that role?

I will be honest with you, I think Young Pistol could be something serious, but there is so much politics out here. Especially when your trying to direct artists in the right direction they need to be going, and that is causing alot of good artists to fall by the wayside. I remember when Glasses Malone first came out and he is tight to me. Guerrilla Black was cool, and he could have been something, but we don’t tend to work cohesively with one another here on the west coast.

We don’t get together and band behind something out here. We are like the 5 burroughs but all separate. We are not trying to come together like say a New York does, we don’t do that. You have Los Angeles, Compton, South Central, Watts, you know that is really just one city. I mean Compton has their own mayor but it is really LA County, but yeah it is really alot of separatism here where it should be more unity.

I don’t think that it is ever going to change and I think it is because of the diverse backgrounds and where our parents were all from different parts of the country, nobody is really 2,3,4 generations of grew up in Los Angeles. They are 1 or 2 generations removed from being somewhere else, like I was born and raised here but both my parents were from somewhere else.

Once you have some generations that grow up and go to school together, then we will have more unity. But until we get unity, we will have division, we will have old west vs new west, how stupid is that?

In being that you are a producer, besides the obvious changes in technology, what do you feel about the production game that has changed the most now as opposed to 10, 20 years ago and who are you feeling as far as new producers?

Well to answer your first question, my first records, I had to go to these lavish studios, do all this work, spend all this money, hire a engineer until I learned how to do it myself. Now everything that I have is on my laptop, including my pro tools, which I can use without hardware. I carry around 10 studios in one bag and I really love that.

If this had been out when I was young, we would have changed the game 10, 20 times over. It would be something completely different right now. When I started producing, they did not even really have MIDI, it was just instruments being connected together. Then MIDI came out and I grew up during that whole development, it might seem like a long time ago but we are only talking about the 80’s.

As far as producers, I really have not kept up with alot of producers that is new that stands out to me. It seems like it is the same people still out there doing it. My favorite producer is Timbaland.

Yeah he is up there for me also. He is incredible.

He is something else and he is the same way, his studio is in his bag as well (laughs).

Last question for you, if you had any advice to give to people wanting to get into the music industry, rappers or producers, what would you tell them?

I would say before you get into the music industry, you have to have a certain type of mentality. You have to be dedicated because people will hate on you and no one will believe in you. Could be your girl or someone else giving you a hard time. Definitely stay in school and finish school. With the technology out now, you can work on your music in your house and put it up on I-Tunes for sale (laughs).

I have songs for sale on Facebook, but yeah it is so easy for people to get their music out there and for people to buy it. If we could have went from the roota to the toota like that and sold records 10 years ago like that, record companies would have BEEN out of business. We were selling cds literally out the trunk of cars, now you can sell them out of your bag or your laptop?

But the problem is, people do not have enough cash to promote and really develop their art and their craft the way that they should. It is just a whole bunch of junk that is out there, there is good stuff out there, but you have to shift through all the other stuff to find it. When I used to go a dig in the crates for records when I was a DJ, I would go through 70 records to find 1 dope one.

The main thing I can say is be tenancious with doing your craft.

That is words of wisdom right there. Alright well that is all the questions I have for you, appreciate you getting down for the interview. Is there any last words or shoutouts you want to get out there to the people?

Yeah I just want to say what’s up to anyone that I have ever worked with. They know who they are and I also want to say sorry it took so long for us to link up for this interview but I have been working but I am glad we linked up. Everyone out there in the music world, just keep working and hopefully things will change and we will be getting rich again like we was before.

All good, well worth the wait. I appreciate your time.

Thank you.

 

 

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