Being 19 years and having your name on an award winning song (his first major production, commercially speaking) in the country must be a proud moment for any young producer. Yung Fly was 18 years when he produced the now classic ‘Someway Bi’ (the song came out when he was 19 years). Although ‘Someway Bi’ did thrust rapper M.anifest into the musical consciousness of many (earning M.anifest best hip hop song and best rapper accolade at the 2015 Vodafone Ghana Music Awards), it also brought attention to Yung Fly.
Now 23, Yung Fly (Mike Kwasi) has gone on to work with some of the biggest artistes in the country; producing chart topping songs for rappers EL, Dex Kwasi, JaySo, Kojo-Cue among many others. His versatility has proven to be a huge asset as Yung Fly is not defined by only hip-hop heavy works. His productions span afrobeat, trap and highlife influences. Yung Fly, who grew up loving the sound of producers Hammer. Jayso and Richie, wanted to be a pilot when young hence the ‘Fly’ in his name.
When he is not busy producing for artistes, Yung Fly is out re-creating some of his favourite classic songs-giving these songs new shade of modernity. A visit to his SoundCloud page showcase the re-creation of songs by Fela Kuti (Felabration) and Ebo Taylor (Opus to Ebo Taylor (Part 1 & 2). Yung Fly dug into his work and pulled his Top 5 productions (thus far), sharing in the process, the exciting back stories on how the beats or productions came about. Here are the words of Yung Fly.
M.anifest – Someway Bi (2013)
The beat was inspired by The Garifuna Women’s Project – Umalali – Merua.
You know I cant make a list without mentioning this classic right? Yea, this is the beat that started it all for me as a producer, this was my first beat and its pure genius as to how well samples were chopped and arranged knowing how young I was at that time. I made this beat when I was 17-18ish. M.anifest heard and jumped on it kind coutersy bro
@iAmSelasie at that time. Inspired by The Garifuna Women’s Project – Umalali – Merua.
Fela Kuti – Elle Iko (2016)
Well I would have listed all 4 beats on Felabration because I love all of them equally and those are the most recent materials I have put out myself apart from other production credits I have this year. I’m guessing you already know how the project came about, it was inspired by a tweet from Okay Africa (@okayplayer) as stated in the description/bio on SoundCloud. This particular beat is number 3 and it has additional production from Ghost LXXXVIII (@ghost_madeit) . It’s a blend of Afrotrap/EDM which is I think is quiet dope I should be doing more of these actually.
Jayso -Freestyle 06 featuring AKAN (2016)
I saw this video of Tyler The Creator and A$AP Rocky freestyle to the Kanye beat. That’s actually what pushed me to do this beat and not even Kanye’s. I went back to look for the sample and made the beat for Freestyle 06 just playing around.
If this beat isn’t one of the hardest then I don’t know what you guys call hard. But yeah, I’ve seen and heard lots of “know it all Facebook and Twitter producers” hating on this beat because “Yung Fly is wack, he stole Kanye’s beat”. Quick question, was the sample only made for Kanye? I’ll wait. The beat was inspired of course by Kanye’s Freestyle 04 but if you actually listen well both beats are nowhere near the same.
I had the sample in one of my folders because yeah, the boy is a sample junkie/crate digger due to the people he looked up to on the come up like J. Dilla, Just Blaze, of course Ye’ (Kanye), Dr. Dre, Timbo amongst others. So, after i heard it on TLOP I was like oh damn I have this. Then weeks later, I saw this video of Tyler The Creator and A$AP Rocky freestyle to the Kanye beat. That’s actually what pushed me to do this beat and not even Kanye’s. I went back to look for the sample and made the beat for Freestyle 06 just playing around. I later played it to Drvmroll that same night and he was like “Yo, that’s fire! Why not upload that to your SoundCloud right now?” which I did.
I was chatting with Jay So that very minute too so told him to check this out since i just put it on SoundCloud. He heard it and was like “Kindly take it down, I want to buy that and do an EP for my birthday”. And there you go, this beat just inspired another project. That’s the story behind that beat. We later got to the studio I think the next day or so and recorded the song. Akan also came later to do his thing which I loved! Talent my gee.
Dex Kwasi – Bass
‘Make them all feel the bass, on the low like the bass!’ Bass, one of the biggest songs by Dex. Dex Kwasi sent me the reference (beat/song halfway recorded) and when I heard that I was like “Yooo send me the lead instrument and vocal” so he did and yeah, that was it! Made the beat and he finished recording to that smash hit. This beat was inspired by Dex himself, I just co-produced and orchestrated the record. One of the best.
Ebo Taylor – Heaven (2016)
I get tagged randomly in videos/audios/mails from people all over freestyling to this. I guess it’s the horns, they give the beat that Presidential African feel and everyone loves that.
This beat though. Everyone seems to be jumping on this one for some reason. I get tagged randomly in videos/audios/mails from people all over free-styling to this. I guess it’s the horns, they give the beat that Presidential African feel and everyone loves that. This beat was inspired by Uncle Ebo Taylor of course, well the whole Opus series from Part 1 was inspired by him, I was going through some of my folders to find something to do for my birthday and Uncle Ebo came through for me pretty smooth.
I love his vibes and how well his songs are written, orchestrated/approached. He knows and understands this music thing since he’s a multi-talented instrumentalist/producer himself. We talk sometimes and are yet to meet in person. I love his music and hope we get to collaborate on some real music soon.