Stephanie Smith | Contributing Writer
Hampton University alumna and founder of I Beat Daily, Raychel J., arranged a producer battle in HU’s student center cyber lounge. The event took place on Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. and was ongoing until midnight.
Producers from all around Virginia registered and submitted beats for Raychel’s I Beat Daily event to expose their music and network with other music-enthusiasts, producers, songwriters, judges and more.
Before the producer battle, there was a songwriter showcase in which three HU students were a part of. 4AM Chef Jimmy, Franky Bandz and Zay Blaze all got the opportunity to present their music and allowed the judges to critique their work.
Each judge had credentials: Andrew Hypes, producer for the three-time Grammy-winning hip-hop artist Lecrae; Batman, Def Jam Records Marketing/promotions representative; and HighDefRazjah, who has placements with ASAP Ferg and Rae Sremmurd.
All three judges were straightforward with producers and shared their tips on how important professionalism is to the music industry. “Everyone did their thing tonight, like I haven’t heard anything bad all night,” Andrew Hypes announced.
A total of 20 beat-makers were picked to compete, and some of those chosen were also HU students. The winner, Chesapeake’s Andre Palace, received $300 in cash along with an Atlantic Records A&R meeting, a slot on I Beat Daily’s mixtape and a chance to visit New York during Grammy week in 2018.
All participants are encouraged to compete again. “This is like my 10th or 11th beat battle, and I’ve been making beats for about 12 years now.” Andre Palace said. Palace also plans to participate in the next I Beat Daily battle in Virginia, which will be hosted in the cyber lounge again.
Some HU students who were in attendance of I Beat Daily’s official VA producer battle appreciated Raychel for bringing more excitement to Hampton Roads. “I Beat Daily’s event was fun. I came to show support for my friend, 3rd, competing. I loved how producers and songwriters connected tonight,” said junior Amal Ahmed.
I Beat Daily founder Raychel J. inspires many as her beat competitions began while she was a junior at Hampton University. The Atlanta native has always been passionate about music. “I grew up in the band. I started when I was in sixth grade.” Raychel said. In addition, she played the trumpet and was a part of HU’s Marching Force and Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority.
Raychel explained why she started a business revolving around producers: “I believe the producers work harder than the artists because finding those sounds, knowing where to place them and knowing how to manipulate them into something amazing takes a lot.”
Aside from the musicality of her college career, Raychel was an ambitious student who studied business management and marketing. While attending HU, Raychel received a few music label-related internships, including one with Interscope Records.
“I interned for Interscope when I was a junior. One of my big sorors told me they were starting up a college market promotion team and told me to send my resume,” Raychel said.
I Beat Daily was launched to show more appreciation toward music. “The artists, talents and singers are always glorified, but you wouldn’t have a song without the producer,” Raychel said. She also specified what she looks for in beat submissions. “I listen for producers’ sound selection and mixing as well,” she added.
VA’s Official Producer Battle and showcase was celebrated in memory of Interscope field marketing representative Cholo.
“Cholo organized all the meet-and-greets in Virginia with Interscope artists, radio interviews and much more.” Raychel said. Cholo was the reason why Raychel met many big-time artists when they were up and coming, such as Kendrick Lamar.
Although the battles branched in Virginia, Raychel still organizes I Beat Daily battles in North Carolina and Georgia for all local music enthusiasts, artists, songwriters and producers to show out.
Raychel operates all pages and replies to many users, especially those who are producers or aspiring interns. If interested in participating in or attending the next producer battle, you can follow I Beat Daily on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for updates @ibeatdaily.