Who is AR?
AR is a producer from Long Island, New York, and probably has produced music for some of your favorite artists. To me, AR achieved a lot of goals aspiring producers today aim for: a dedicated following on social media with a plethora of songs on their soundcloud. Not only has he built a name for himself, he achieved this all at a young age, working on his craft in his adolescence and making waves in the scene at just 22. How did he do it?
Unfortunately, most producers seldom get asked about their thoughts and opinions in the scene they work in, and they’re full of insight and philosophy about how they go about their work. While AR might draw parallels to other producers in the scene, he goes about his projects in distinct ways that we can learn from as producers and music fans respectively. Luckily, we at CollabPlug had a chat with AR to discover who AR is, his work ethic, and his goals for the future, which you can read below.
Photo by AR
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? How did you come up with your name?
I’m AR, I’m from Long Island, New York and I’m a producer. There’s nothing really special about the origin of my production name, its just my initials really.
What got you into producing and when did you first start? Influences?
I started making beats around 16-17 years old, I would hang out with some friends in my hometown from high school that would rap and I wanted to be able to contribute and do something without rapping (laughs). I started taking audio production/recording classes in 11th grade of high school at a tech program my school offered. That’s pretty much when I decided it was what I wanted to do.
Tell us about your work process. Your creative process?
My work process usually starts out with me finding a sound and making a melody or something wavy out of it. Some people start with drums but I never really do it like that. It’s whatever you feel comfortable with at the end of the day and as long as it comes out fire.
Do you have a favorite track that you’ve worked on? If so, why?
It’s hard to say, I have a lot of stuff yet to be released that I’m excited about, but probably “Damned” for Thouxanbanfauni. We did the song almost 2 years before it came out and it was the first session where we actually made music together. I recorded it too.
What’s the most time you’ve spent in the studio straight?
Probably like 12-14 hours.
Any artists you want to work with that you haven’t yet?
Favorite and least favorite things about producing? Love/Hate?
My favorite thing is making some fire shit and seeing it come to life and the wackest part is when it doesn’t feel fun and things feel forced.
Have there been times where you’ve almost failed or given up? How did you bounce back and what keeps you motivated?
Of course, the only thing you can do is try to work through it and focus on the bigger picture. There will always be bumps along the road no matter where you’re at in your career.
What goals did you have before you started vs. now?
When I first started I was looking to meet people and place beats and as I got older and further into the business you learn how to move better and how to prioritize. Now I’m focused on putting together a project and keep building with some of the artists I work closely with.
Top 3 favorite artists for you today? Top 3 all time?
Hard to say for today, my 3 favorite of all time are Michael Jackson , Sade , & Jim Morison.
How does it feel working with such big people at such a young age?
It’s cool, I have relationships with most of the artists I work with today which helps me a lot. It puts me in advantage over some people.
What are you strengths as a producer? What are you weaknesses and how are you working on them? How much do you think you’ve progressed since you started?
My strength is me being in loops and on the scene as opposed to just knowing people through the internet. My weakness is sometimes I let people in the room distract me from getting work done as quick as I can haha, when I’m alone I make a lot of beats.
What advice do you have for aspiring producers and even artists?
Keep working and grinding even when you feel like shit won’t work out, because things can change overnight.
Like what AR had to say? Check out his Twitter and Instagram at @afuckinr and listen to the work he’s produced on his SoundCloud. We also asked some less serious questions below which you can check out, and if you ever want to have a feature with us on the site, please submit your information to [email protected]!
Favorite pair of shoes? What were the first pairs you bought when you could afford it?
Black and white cement Jordan 3s
Favorite strain to smoke?
Girl Scout Cookies
Blunts, Papers, Glass or Other?
Blunts and Raw Papers
Which kind? Dutch Masters? Backwoods? Frontos?
Backwoods all day
Tell us about the first time you smoked and what happened?
I smoked with some homies I would skate with at some skate park near my crib. I didn’t get high the first time.
Favorite TV show/ Video Game/ Character?
Rick and Morty
Favorite places to travel and somewhere you hope to go that you haven’t been yet.
My favorite place I traveled to is Greece, I have family out there. I want to go to Dubai to see what’s up.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
I would want the same powers as the flash