Young Guru and How to Make the Best Music

Friday, March 21: 6 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
Jay-Z collaborator Young Guru

Young Guru's impressive resume highlights more than a decade of experience in sound engineering and production, as well as his role as A&R for Roc-A-Fella Records and Def Jam Recordings. However, he's most lauded for his work behind the boards, shaping some of hip-hop's brightest talents: mixing 10 of Jay-Z's 11 albums, and DJing on the Watch the Throne tour, as well as Jay-Z's legendary Carnegie Hall and Barclays Center shows. On several recordings, Jay-Z himself offers verbal acknowledgements of Guru's importance.

As one of audio's most important minds and essential voices, Guru has elevated the discourse of audio engineering philosophy, science and technology. On March 19, 2014, Young Guru sat down with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame education director Jason Hanley for an exclusive interview, sharing stories from his years in the music industry. "The best music, in my opinion, is made by small groups of people in these small areas," says Guru. "If you go to Detroit and look at the Motown house, it's little – it's super little – but you think about the immense amount of music that came out of that house; or if you go to Stax and look at Stax… 15-20 people made this incredible amount of music. That's what we were trying to do – just make this environment where just great music was coming out."


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