By Zoei Nijjar
VANCOUVER – Ivan Jackson and Conor Rayne are living the Soundcloud bedroom producer’s dream with their joint project, Brasstracks. After three years of uploading music to Soundcloud and one Grammy win with Chance the Rapper, Jackson and Rayne are playing festival after festival and appearing on tracks alongside Lil Wayne, 2 Chainz and Schoolboy Q.
First meeting at the Manhattan School of Music, their shared love of jazz music was what initially brought them to start a band. Their debut EP, Good Love, was released in 2016 and features artists such as Masego, Alexander Lewis, Lido and more. As the name suggests, Brasstracks heavily utilizes brass instruments in their production paired with fast paced percussion to produce their signature high energy bangers. Their incorporation of jazz and electronic music elements combine to create feel-good, genre breaking sound that make you want to jump up and get down.
It’s no surprise that Jackson and Ryan are the two talented producers behind Chance the Rapper’s Grammy winning track, “No Problem.” How the collaboration initially came about, was all because of Twitter. In 2015 Brasstracks tweeted, “Lol we actually can’t upload a single song without someone saying Chance the Rapper should be on it. not mad.” And before they knew it, they were collaborating in a LA studio with Chance himself.
“I was frankly astonished and super grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Chance and to even have the opportunity to attend the Grammys,” Rayne shares. “That was one of the most special moments of my life. I think the most important part of the night was my mom meeting Chance’s mom; that was dope.”
“Seeing how happy my mom was in that moment was probably the best part of the Grammys,” chimes in Jackson.
In an era of musical abundance, the duo partially credits their unique sound to New York City praise the city for it’s jazz scene. “There aren’t any brass musicians [out there] that are touching what’s happening in New York right now, as far as I’m concerned, not even New Orleans,” Jackson mentions, excitedly. “There is not a better collection of brass players anywhere in the world, that’s factual. I think that what’s happening in New York is a renaissance of people around our age starting bands based on the horns, popular music, hip hop, R&B and a huge dose of nostalgia that is inspired by the melting pot that is New York.”
With a new EP on the horizon for the Brooklyn based artists, the duo shared that the record will be released in two parts. “We started with a bunch of [loose] tracks, some of them made pre Good Love [but] most of them were made after,” Jackson shares. “We weren’t able to weave a real story around all of it, but we loved all of the songs so we split i[them] up into a two part EP. We looked at them as two separate bodies of work and saw that stories could be woven around those two juxtaposed stories.”
Brasstacks performs at Faded in the Park on July 7th.brasstacks, FVDED in the Park