Mackenzie took a different approach when recording her debut album, The Edge, because it was a completely different experience; this wasn’t a hook or a track, but an entire album.
Still, while the process may have differed, there were some things she took with her: a book, some coffee, and lessons she’s picked up watching Tech N9ne.
Mackenzie Nicole gave us an inside look into The Edge studio sessions below.
When you were working on The Edge, did you approach it like your work on Tech’s albums and the Collabos albums or was it a different experience because it was a full album?
The Edge was in no way shape or form recorded the same way as my other music. It was impossible to do it the same.
Before, I was going into the studio with Ben, our engineer, and Seven, our in-house producer, and, if I was working with another artist, often, the artist themselves. I was writing in the studio, going in, and recording it to the point I felt it was perfect.
This album was different in that it was done with a production duo out of Los Angeles called The Jam.
Jordan and Michael, The Jam, would fly out to Kansas City from LA. In the course of 3 months, they took about four to six trips and we worked on a song a day in the studio; so the entire album was recorded in the span of 12 studio days.
Basically, I would link up with Jordan in one studio and we would write to a track. Michael would be in the next room producing the beat for the next track.
It was a very different exercise than writing by myself. The environment and culture were totally different.
Just curious, though the process may not have been the same, were there things you did, had or needed in the studio? What are your studio essentials?
For the longest time, from about 2014-2017, I wrote in the exact same composition book for everything I was working on. So for a while, that was a studio essential. This album was the first time I didn’t have that because it filled up…another way this was an entirely different process.
No matter what, though, I’ve got to have some coffee, and I have to have something to draw with. I’m a big fan of drawing as I’m working and as it’s being mixed.
If it’s going to be a long session, I need to have a book to read as someone is mixing. I’m a big fan of Camus; absurdism is my jam.
Working with Tech throughout the years, what lessons did you learn from him that you applied to this album?
A huge part of why I wanted to do music was because I wanted to express myself in a similar fashion I saw Tech expressing himself.
I love how theatrical he is. I love the worlds he creates in his music and the characters he creates. Growing up I always had that to look up to. Performance-wise too, watching his shows and how theatrical they are.
The type of artist, the level of creativity, and the creation is something that always inspires me. He’s the method actor of musicians and that’s always what I wanted to do.
All the hard work, the new recording method, and of course, the lessons from Tech, can be heard in full when The Edge drops Friday, April 13th.