Situation was a project that started with Buck (one of my DJ/hip-hop mentors) and I recording some songs with no clear intentions, just sort of messing around making some songs for the fun of it. We had never really collaborated and always talked about working on something. It basically started via email in the winter of 05/06; I’d send him a few beats and he would rap into whatever microphone he had handy wherever he was and send it back. Most of the beats were made on my SP-1200, the machine Buck used to make his Vertex LP (one of my favorite albums of all time), and were inspired by the stripped-down, drum-break-and-sample beats from that record. We started to pick up some speed in early ’06 and had sketches of 10-or-so songs done (along with 2 more in collaboration with DJ Signify), so we booked some studio time in Halifax and he recorded some proper vocals over the beats.
That version of the record made the rounds within our circles and eventually reached Buck’s label, Warner. They liked it and wanted to put the record out as Buck’s next major label release. Considering that wasn’t our goal, we were pretty excited about the opportunity and thought our work was basically done. Until we told them that pretty much the entire record was made from samples. Without a massive budget, the record was not going to come out in the style that we had initially made it. Long story short, I went back to the studio a few times with some session players and made new versions of most of the songs and a year and a half later the album came out.
People have been asking about those first versions ever since the sample-clearance story started circulating. Yesterday I dug around and found the original zip that I sent Buck of the rough mixes of the first sessions, which was the demo album that was passed on to Warner. I think today is as good a day as any to let it go to the public. Some of the titles are different/working titles, and they aren’t polished, but I think it gives you an idea of where the record stood before we went back into the studio to change most of the music up. You can download the demo here.