Photo Credit: Dash Grey
Following the release of his new album, The Color of Nothing (Reprise), we caught up with producer, ford.. At just 21 years old, ford. has been nominated for a Grammy, produced remixes for acts such as Bearson, Ashe and Kasbo, and has toured alongside some of electronic music’s biggest names. His new project, which was released via ODESZA’s Foreign Family Collective, features five remixes, two stripped back versions of his hit “4:38am” and two new tracks. He kicks off his first North American headlining tour this September and is an act you do not want to miss! Check out what ford. had to say below –
BTS: How would you describe your sound to someone who hasn’t heard it yet?
ford.: I feel like the general term that has come up as of late is Indie/Electronic I guess. But as most musicians might say, I don’t like to put myself in any kind of pigeonhole genre-wise and want to continue to push my sound. I guess I would say it’s a coalescence of electronic, indie, and hip/hop elements.
BTS: Your new album, The Color of Nothing (Reprise) features remixes from some other talented artists. What was the process like for these? Did you work with them or did they have free rein?
ford.: I had a lot of fun working with the remixers on the Reprise album! I didn’t really give them any set guidelines. I’ve known some of these guys for a few years now and even idolized their work in my early Soundcloud days. I guess I trusted that those I wanted to involve in this project were people who understood the concept but weren’t going to limit themselves to any specific sound. I’m really pleased with how all the remixes came out and that it was able to provide a wide array of different takes that still felt cohesive in the context of the album.
BTS: Barrie’s voice pairs so beautifully with your song ‘4:38am’, how did that collaboration come about?
ford.: It’s actually pretty interesting! I had been trying to work with a lot of different vocalists for that song throughout the writing process but couldn’t quite find the right fit. Eventually my manager reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in working with Barrie. I didn’t realize it at the time but I had been listening to a couple songs off of her new album in some of my playlists so I was stoked to be working with someone who’s music I’d already been running up. Eventually we connected and Barrie started sending over different takes. It took some time but we got the structure of both the music and the lyrics to a place that we were really happy with 🙂
BTS: A couple of your new tracks hone in on piano leads and an almost ambient feel. What inspired the shift to explore this sound vs the lo-fi sound you have become well known for?
ford.: Piano has always been the instrument that I can get most of my ideas out of in a very freeform sense. Initially I gravitated towards using it in a lot of songs because that’s what I knew and while I still use piano quite often, I guess I just really wanted to keep pushing my sound. I think it’s a lot easier to stay in the same place as a musician when you are predisposed to using the same tools all the time. I wanted to get myself to go outside my comfort zone and I think it’s taught me the importance of keeping an open mind in the writing process. That’s what keeps music interesting for me.
BTS: Building on that last question – is there a different genre of music that you have an interest in experimenting in?
ford.: I’ve honestly just been enjoying making whatever comes to me! Having a lot of fun getting back to my roots of writing beats and building a catalogue of little bops. The new Madlib album got me really inspired to get back into crate digging for old cuts and sampling records. I’ll make a few weekly trips to the record store here and there, come back home, and throw it on the Audio-technica to see if there are any fun gems that might spark an idea. I think it’s helped me get back to a way of writing music without overthinking it.
BTS: What are some tracks or artists that you’ve been digging lately?
ford.: Been listening to lots of Kiefer lately, the whole “Between Days” album has no misses. Also been playing lots of Kaytra, Tom Misch, and Knx.
BTS: Any big plans for the remainder of 2021?
ford.: Going to head out on my first North American headline tour in September which is nerve-wracking as hell but really exciting. Besides that I’m just working on new music and eager to keep making music
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