Photo: Josh Wehle
Lee Bannon cemented his career as a producer sculpting beats for the likes of Del and Joey Bada$$ 's Beast Coast collective. But the stylistically freewheeling Sacramento, CA-product's ambitions extend beyond being simply pegged as a rap boardsman. Signed to longtime UK progressive outpost Ninja Tune, Lee released Alternative/Endings earlier this year - an impassioned full-on foray into jungle that reflects the studiousness with which he approaches the genre. (Peep the controlled frenzy of Lee's beat for Joey's "Hilary Swank" for a quick glimpse of his evolution from point A to point B.) Not long ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing Lee for a "Headphone Highlights" show for RBMA Radio - essentially a program in which the subject picks a playlist of some of his/her favorite tunes and talks about them. Lee seized the opportunity to discuss his wide-ranging tastes - everything from Talk Talk to Brian Eno to Venetian Snares to Andre Nickatina to People Under the Stairs . Which in turn led to his articulating why he believes the production elements on, say, The Prodigy's "Weather Experience" are assembled with a sophistication on par with any classic Pete Rock track. Plus, he offers a cash prize to anyone who can recite the first verse of Ghostface's "Nutmeg" without error. Enjoy!