Record producer Jadou Clayton King of Hard Layer Records, better known as Salid, also has the titles of studio engineer, artist and host under his belt. The 36-year-old, who has more than 1000 songs in his music production repertoire, recently sat with DancehallMag to discuss, among other things, his musical prowess and his views on the trajectory of the Reggae and Dancehall music industry.
When did you first start out and how would you describe your music?
You know mi start out back ina di 90s when I was attending Titchfield High School and mi have quite a few friends who were writing songs and you know mi have the love fi di music from way back when, because mi fada own a sound system and ting. So the love fi di music did deh-deh from long time, so mi start writing songs doing some on the school bus dem; perform on stage in front of the school and dem ting deh, until we start record wi song first song, mi and mi fren Chad-R. Him pass RIP Chad-R. So from deso mi get the drive, mi just start work pan the craft; start do the music the right way till mi build mi own studio now and all a dem ting deh inna production and I do all a those stuff.
Who are some of your most inspirational artists in the music industry?
Well you know one of the first artists weh really inspire me was Bounty Killer because fi him song we first tek and use him flow and rewrite the song and start start out like that. But, over the years we have grown to love quite a few artists because on the international scene mi like artists like Eminem an whole heap a other artists like Bruno Mars and dem artists deh, because dem have unique style and flow and craft to dem ting. So the style the style weh mi have it not jus inspired by dancehall, it’s a mixture of all the music weh mi love
Tell us why people are now saying that you are not a triple threat, you are now a quadruple threat.
Well the reason probably why people say I’m not a triple threat anymore because mi normally is an artist, an engineer a music producer but now they see that I’m doing shows where I became a huge emcee. I host a lot of shows, even recently a show in Windsor Forest Campbell’s Castle Infant Primary. I host that with D’Angel and all these artists so, the people dem just like the energy and the vibe that I bring, because I entertain naturally. A no something mi haffi a try and do so that’s why they say I’m a quadruple threat right now
Who are some well known artists whom you have produced for?
Well mi produced songs fi a whole host of artists, right now the amount of artists weh mi produce songs for mi neeven have dem pan the top of mi brain but mi work with Khago already; mi work wid Xkappe; mi work wid Kryme; mi work wid a whole host of artists and you dun know say mi even produce myself, because I have my own production label and my own studio so you know how di ting go
What is the name of your production studio and its location?
My production studio name is Hard Layer Records located the cool parish of Manchester, South Manchester Ellen Street, you know what I mean where we do the finest work of production
Tell us about your personal music, what is your biggest single and how many songs do you have?
Well my personal music is a form of singjay with DJ sometime. I rap a bit; depends on the mood I am in, for my biggest song I have so many songs that well I had a song which reached on a chart with Kanye West… it name “Cheat/Upgrade that song went on a Chart with Kanye West and a whole heap of them, I don’t remember the chart because its been a few years and I produced the song. It did some good numbers. I went like number 8 or number 9 in the chart so it did some good numbers and for the amount of songs that I have, I have well over 1000 songs recorded and I have a host of probably a hundred songs right now in Pro Tools weh mi not even mix nor master yet.
How do you feel about the use of new technologies in current production, and do you feel these technologies create better sounding music?
Well most the new technologies create a better tone in the music because I’m an engineer so I can tell you. Back then the music have a more warmer sound, but now the music has more clarity, because if you listen a song from way back in the eighties or nineties, the music don’t sound as crystal and as clear as the music sounds right now. So new technologies ,it really works a lot right now and it makes the job for engineer and producers much better cause back in the days they use a 24 track that you have to cut and if you stop working on that song you can’t just go back and just edit like Protools. I use a lot of software, I’m versed in Protools knowing a whole lot of software. With the software now you can stop (and) take a break, because one you are working on music, your ears become fatigued, so you can stop take a break and go back right where you left off. Back then, engineers could not have done such a good job and I commend them for working with such primitive (tools).
Which Jamaican artist do you think is currently on top of the game and why?
“Well for top of the game, we have to put it in segments or categories, because Skillibeng is doing very well overseas he is doing very good numbers.”