Timbaland is a legendary hip-hop and pop producer, and in a recent interview he disclosed how much he might charge for just one beat.
Timbaland said that he once earned as much as $500k for his productions in an interview with The Producer Grind podcast, which can be heard above around the 51:00 mark in the interview. I used to make between $300,000 and $500, he claimed.
When asked why producers aren’t getting paid as much anymore, he said, “Because y’all don’t place no value on yourself. We aren’t from the world where you send beats; rather, we are from the era in which that bitch was custom-made, do you get what I’m saying?
Early in the 1990s, Timbaland made his debut, but by the middle of the decade, he was producing music for some of the biggest performers in the world.
He has credentials in both R&B and hip-hop for his many collaborations with Missy Elliott, Aaliyah, and Ginuwine. His popularity didn’t end there, though, as he proceeded to collaborate on successful songs in the 2000s with artists like Jay-Z, Nas, Justin Timberlake, Drake, Madonna, Rihanna, and even Björk.
He observed that “the producer was far more respected.” If you were an artist, you required a great producer. Now that YouTube is available, you had a need for that. People adding beats just don’t sound the same.
Outside, it resembles the Wild Wild West. Since there was a lot of value to the producer back then, it is still possible to have some value now; however, you must be careful to limit your actions and messages. It was a different era back then. For the producer game, I would say it was significantly better.
Timbaland also discussed the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in production earlier in the interview, at the 34-minute mark. He was developing a programme that creates sounds when the computer is sleeping, and I knew him.
He was one of my homeboys, he said. And when he opens up, it creates the craziest snares while he sleeps, uses white noise, and kicks them. He’s been working on this for years, and I’m confident that he’s now an expert. Instead of buying drum kits from other people, the computer creates his kits. While he is sleeping, take samples.