As son of the legendary David Rodigan MBE, London-based producer Cadenza is by no means living in his father's shadow.
Following on from the release of "Electric Blocks" featuring Fem Fel, and "When Will I Stop Dreaming" featuring Kiko Bun & Loyle Carner, Cadenza's latest track “Foundation” has brought together two of the most influential dancehall artists from both sides of the pond for the first time: Stylo G and Busy Signal.
I caught up with him on how this unique collaboration came about and his journey and influences leading up to it.
Check out the full interview below.
So first things first, why Cadenza?
It was just a word I came across from playing in school orchestras as a kid. A cadenza is a virtuoso solo passage usually played by the lead violinist. It tends to be very difficult and allows the player to show the range of his skill. I think I just liked the word and what it meant so I stuck with it.
It’s still so early in your career and you’ve travelled so much. From Jamaica to the USA, touring with Major Lazer, etc. How important would you say these experiences have been in shaping your sound? Or had you always had a clear idea in mind of the direction your music was going in?
Yeah, I have been very lucky to go to so many places at my age and being around those different cultures has definitely exposed me to new sounds and vibes. I was in Rio last year during the World Cup and Diplo took a bunch of us to some local baile funk clubs in the favelas. That was really cool to experience because that music literally centers around one particular drum beat (similar to how reggaeton and Baltimore club have their own distinct drum patterns and loops), but it's not monotonous at all. I'm really into being able to achieve that with my own music. The less sounds I can use in order to achieve something thats captivating and dynamic is the most important thing for me.
Who would you say has had the biggest influence on you as a producer?
In terms of the more R&B and hip-hop side to my production, I would say obviously I looked to the Neptunes, Ryan Leslie, Samiyam, and Hud Mo. But in terms of club music, it would be people like Pearson Sound, Mala, Randomer, and Joker. I can't really put it down to one person…
Let’s talk about your most recent track, “Foundation.” Nice one managing to get Stylo G and Busy signal collaborating for the first time on it! How did this all come about?
I showed Stylo the instrumental over a year ago when I had just moved into my own studio. He vibed with it straight away and then there were months of just getting his bit done and recorded right. I could always hear Busy on the record, so he was the last part of the puzzle. I sent him the record and got his verse back the next day and that was that.
What drew you to the “Real Rock” riddim?
It's a seminal part of Jamaican dancehall culture. It was the go-to track for any DJ to toast on in any dance back in the late 70s. For me, people that dont even know or like reggae have probably heard that riddim somewhere. The famous organ line in the track is played by the amazing Jackie Mitto and it was produced by Coxsone Dodd. Theres so much history to the track, so I just wanted to do my own version of it which I thought might captivate today’s listener.
What’s the summer looking like for you? Any big festivals/shows coming up?
Yeah, I'm doing Lovebox and the LoveBox Afterparty. Then theres Farr Festival and Bestival at the end of the summer.
Which one are you most excited for? And why, obviously…
I would say Lovebox just because it's in London and I always find thats the best place to test out new tracks and ideas for your sets.
Dead or alive, which artist(s) would you most like to collaborate with?
Any irrational fears?
Spiders, we’ve never really seen eye to eye.
Haha, thanks Oliver!