Sean Garrett’s in the star-making business. The Atlanta producer/rapper is the man behind such hits as Usher’s Yeah!, Nicki Minaj’s Massive Attack and Chris Brown’s Run It. Garrett’s current projects are upcoming albums with one-named wonders Rihanna and Brandy. If you’re looking to make it in the music business, you’ll be glad to hear Garrett has made Miami his second home. We caught up with him outside his studio:
What goes into making a top-selling record?
I think a lot that goes into making hits is at first identifying the people, the culture, what makes people dance, what catches people’s attention, how to phrase things, how to make people feel real about the songs. Whether it’s a dance record or a boy-meets-girl love song. Whatever it is, there has to be a certain amount of integrity in the music that people have to feel connected to. It doesn’t have to be serious, but it’s a certain type of connection: how you make people feel.
Have you ever gone into a session with your vision of the song changing after you started recording?
Me and “B” [Beyonce] work so well together. She is a great songwriter as well. So a lot of times when she and I work, I’ll be the person that sort of starts off the idea. I’ll take it to her, and she will be like, ‘Yeah, I feel that’ or ‘I like that, but change a little bit here.’ That comes into really knowing your craft and knowing what you are doing and being able to sort of switch gears.
Is there someone you’ve always wanted to team up with?
I had always wanted to work with Brandy. We just put out Put It Down, the first track off her new album 211. It’s featuring my ‘little brother’ Chris Brown. The feedback has been enormous.