In discussion with Ty Dolla $ign: “I’m the best at making songs”

Sam Nahirny /
Oct 30, 2017 / Music

He’s one of the 21st centuries musical greats. Responsible for basically 47.3% of the pop hits you’ve heard this past few years, whether that be cos he wrote them, sang them, produced them, or had anything to do with them. He’s a certified musical genius, and he’s about to drop one of his most important projects.

As I walk into Ty’s press office for the day, I’m already hit with his larger than life character. Which somehow manages to be extremely relaxed, yet massively confident at the same time. Aesthetically badass with his Taylor Gang sweatshirt and heart-shaped shades, we delve into the new project.

A project that he describes in one line as “my favourite album of 2017, and if you don’t know, bitch, you better ask somebody.”

Thankfully, we can be that somebody for ya. The project is Beach House 3, only just released to the public ears, and is the third in the ‘Beach House’ series. See what they did there?

One quick glance at the 20 song tracklist, and you’ll see, before even hearing any of it – that it’s basically the Superbowl of 2017 music and includes features from Pharrell, Skrillex, Jeremih, Future and loads more.

Speaking to Ty, he shared that the song that means the most to him personally is actually album opener ‘Famous’, cos “It basically started to feel like a lot of people around me were hanging around for the lights and the bullshit, instead of just hanging out as regular homies. I got sick of that shit, so I had to talk about it. Me and my brother Poo Bear made it together alongside a very special guest, when you hear it, you’ll know”.

One thing that fascinates me, and many others is how slick and polished Ty’s tracks are, so I was curious to see what he’s like in the studio, if he’s always making changes; “It’s the vibe – how it hits me at the time.” he explains, “Listening to tracks over and over again and something will stick out. I was in the studio with someone the other day and they said ‘a record is never over.’

“I’m a psycho and I keep on hearing little things that I do like and wanna hear more of, or I don’t like and wanna get rid of.”

On the musical creation vibe – Ty is a musician of many talents – guitars, keys, bass plus more. He tells how the only reason that he wanted to play instruments was so that he could get the sounds that he was hearing and enjoying on other other songs, into his own. For Ty however, the learning never stops. “When I started learning how to play any instrument, it took time to really get the feel of it.” he says, “And then later on, it’s like 12 notes and then it repeats. So it’s not that hard, and once I figured that part out it got easier. And I’m still learning. There’s more stuff to learn every day for sure.

One time I was talking to my boy Thundercat and he told me – ‘yo, be the best at one thing’. When you hear Thundercat come through he destroys the bass.” Ty says, “Yeah I play bass too, but I play guitar and keys to make a song. I’m the best at making songs. I want them to sound the best.”

That’s the thing about Ty, he never wants to settle, or stop. A follow up to 2015’s Free TC is also on the cards. “We got some shit I’m super excited about.” he teases, “We’re focused for sure on BH3 right now, it’s the most important album of 2017 and 2018. It’s all fire. A year’s worth of me picking through all the songs we did.”

The album is out now for your ears to indulge in. And we can confirm, it really is as exciting as Ty said it would be.

Words by Sam Nahirny

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