I’m sure readers who have been following our series ‘’Talking Verses’’ would be surprised to see Kuvie as the one we are spotlighting this week. It’s deliberate, if you consider the sort of work he pulled on two records for two different artists. Kuvie ‘beat verse’ therefore deserves to be talked about.
For those who might not know Kuvie, the guy is a music producer who has produced for both top artists. Having thrusted himself into full time music production in 2015, the young producer has earned his stripes as a leading figure as far as the new wave of producers is concern. Kuvie has also gone a step from being a producer. He is also an artist, thanks to his debut, the eargasmic, mood lightener ‘Gruvie’ EP.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about his two ‘verses’ on two incredible tracks: first, Lady Jay’s incredible song ‘’Venus’’. The abrasive, poppy, confident and ‘I know my worth’ lyrics and classy delivery that saw Lady Jay switching cadences flawlessly- and that poor, forgettable delivery by Sarkodie aside, ‘’Venus’’ owed its incredibility to Kuvie’s production.
The beat is epic. Kuvie frames a beat portrait that used highlife, agbadza rhythms laced 808, trap bounce. The elegantly embroidered beat pitches tradition – the agbadza rhythms of the Ewe people, an ethnic group from which Kuvie is from – with modern day trendy hip hop influences. If this beat was a piece of artwork, connoisseurs would be writing a series of think pieces about it. Plus, I wonder where Kuvie was creatively when he composed this piece of beat together.
The statement above is not me fanning Kuvie’s genius attributes. Yes, I used that G word. For anyone who has followed Kuvie’s handiwork, he has developed a signature sound as far as his productions are concerned. His beats are minimalistic in tone, the traditional Ghanaian elements are very prominent and the overall production belches with euphoric feel.
On Lady Jay’s ‘’Venus’’, the beat begins with a 5 note clap or tap– a prominent opener in many Ghanaian folk music. Next came the hi-hats, followed by a ‘hey’ scream. Entered the winding electro inflections that gave the beat its intensity. The intensity, the ebb and flow of the beat matched the vigour that Lady Jay’s voice carried. The beat coils, assumes a gentle posture- when the agbaza rhythms comes on, and switches back to the winding, hard hitting, speaker breaking tone.
Kuvie employed the same technique on ‘’Agbadza’’ by E.L. Released in December 2014, ‘’Agbadza’’ also carried the clap/tap sound at the beginning before the drums and kicks gave it additional girth. Unlike Lady Jay’s ‘’Venus’’, E.L’s song lacked the intensity of ‘Venus’. ‘Agbadza’ was more mellow, relaxed, well-spaced. You could hear the similarities between the two beats. Obviously, Kuvie flipped ‘Agbadza’’ to create ‘’Venus’’.
Kuvie continues to produce records for artists who call on his expertise. And he continues to make a killing with his works. Although he has not been in the game for long, Kuvie’s credentials has already been etched. What is left is for him to become a legend. So, Kuvie, make the beats.