When Kenny Beats explains how he mailed cassettes and headphones, with no labels, notes, or explanations, to a bunch of his favorite music people… wild.
All he wanted was them to hear it. He had to make the packaging so curious somebody would press play. And it worked.
Guy could have had a marketing career – this is some David Ogilvy-level stunting (I’m thinking of the time he mailed live carrier pigeons in an effort to sell private jets).
Rick Rubin was one of the people who got a tape and pressed play. If you never heard their 2-part conversation on sub-genres of regional hip-hop sounds, that Broken Record interview is below too. But if you want to get real, try this episode of Tetragrammaton.
Kenny tells the story of his album Louie, which I’ve (very briefly, very glowingly) written about here, and really dives into the connection he had with his Dad. He talks about how his father would make mixtapes for people. He’d show up at a house party with a tape instead of wine or a dessert.
And he’d talk on the tapes too. Like, in between the songs. DJ style. They were custom jobs. Fully.
How special is that?
I’ll likely be writing a few notes from my notes on this episode. It’s moving and it got me pretty emotional a few times. It’s also just so smart. As good as the Rory Sutherland episode good. Every time I hear Kenny talk I get a little more obsessed. I hope they sit and talk like this again soon.