Jeremy Copeland: Words cannot explain the excitement I have right now to be introducing the next celebrity interview with musical legend Teddy Riley. The musical composer behind Michael Jackson’s “ Dangerous “ has agreed to sit with me today and talk about his current projects and the booming topic behind the name “K-POP”. Teddy, how are you? What are you currently working on?
Teddy Riley: Man Life is great; I am now working on a BlackStreet record and moved down here to Atlanta to be close to my kids. I love being with my all my kids, they just give me a whole new light on how to be creative. I am also building a studio right now so I can focus and vibe out right. I did not like Atlanta because I feel like ATL had too much going on but I had to realize that where you live is what you make it so I was able to adjust. With all our celebrities passing and people dying in general, the people we keep in our surroundings make a huge difference and that’s why I try to keep just my family and positive individuals in my company. I just want to make sure that what ever I do, it is that right thing and pleasing unto God.
Jeremy Copeland: There has been this amazing buzz of this new sound of music coming from over seas that a lot of producers are trying to jump on. Please explain to my readers what “K-POP” Is.
Teddy Riley: K-POP is a new sound and movement that, just like New Jack Swing, came out and has people receiving it and wanting to jump on it. K-Pop is about a whole different sound to music and you really have to be a real musician to venture off into this because the Asian culture loves real music, you cannot just be a beat master and think you can just join right it, you have to come hard and really grasp and under stand the culture of K-Pop to create K-Pop music. In that culture they do not call a producer a producer, they call him the “Composer” because to them we are the composers of music. They call the Choreographers the “ Professor “, Dance to them has a whole new meaning then us in America, it means so much more to them then steps and movement. They want what we have but they want it bigger than we have musically. A lot of producers come down there to get a piece of that sound but you cannot jump in somebody else’s arena and say your going to take over. You have to come in and fit in where you fit in. That’s where I came in, I fit in where I could and also I did not try to over charge and drain the record companies as well for my music. I have recorded about 25-26 songs down there so we are working hard. It is a movement that is taking over by storm. You are talking about a sound that is packing out arenas like Madison Square Garden twice and packing out the Tokyo Bowl. This is not a game.
Jeremy Copeland: There has been speculation with who was the FIRST to introduce K-POP To the USA, Would you like to clear that up for everyone?
Teddy Riley: That credit is given to J.Y Parker; He is the guy that introduced K-POP to America. I am the first Black producer to introduce K-POP to America though, just to clear that up but as far as introduction, the credit goes to Mr. Parker. He brought the Wonder Girls out here and a couple of more groups and his sound out here. It is funny how everyone is just starting to jump on this and now random people want to start taking the credit for a sound that had already been introduced. I got love for everyone, I got love for Swiss Beats and all the producers out there, but when you come into K-POP, Don’t ever say your taking over, that is their music and you cannot take that from them. I have put records on different K-Pop groups and have made them #1’s and have sold millions off of those records and I still cannot say I am taking over; I just want to be in the mix of great creation. But once again, I will say I am the first African American Producer to introduce K-POP to America and really stand behind it.
Jeremy Copeland: I hear you are in the studio readying a new album is this true and what can we expect from this new Record?
Teddy Riley: Yes this is true we are recording. All I can say is, you can expect to hear what you always-here form BlackStreet and that is great-unexpected music. We change our sound every time we cut a record. First album had a sound, then the first album did not sound like the second and the second did not sound like the third or the fourth. We are coming with a new sound and that’s all I can say at the moment. We are coming with great music and a sound that is unexpected. Right now, I cannot come with the same thing I have to create amazing music like I have always done. Whether people like it or not I am not afraid to change and make a new sound. A lot of people get afraid and create the same thing and don’t want to try anything new, so I want to continue to be the one to try something new.
Jeremy Copeland: Looking over your resume you have worked with a lot of beyond A-List stars such as Michael Jackson and ETC. One current A-list artist that you have produced for is recording artist “ Lady GAGA” What hade you want to work with her being that she was so wet behind the ears in the industry and so different?
Teddy Riley: I heard a talent brilliant young lady who was not afraid of what she wanted. She explored her talent and re-invented herself outside of the box every time and that’s what made me want to work with her.
Jeremy Copeland: Speaking of stars and re-inventing yourself, who do you feel is really bringing that to the industry full force and that you respect so much for being a true artist?
Teddy Riley- Beyonce, she is our only star right now hands down.
Jeremy Copeland: Being in this industry so long what is one important factor that you have grown to learn?
Teddy Riley: What I learned over the years is that being humble is a good thing and also can be a bad thing because people can get over one you. I learned that you must wait your turn and do not over saturate yourself and that’s why I am still here 26 years later. Do not over expose yourself. Come out one good time and let people enjoy it. If it is a run, then have your 2year run and go away, let people miss you. That will sustain your career and that’s how you avoid getting bored with your craft because a lot of people get bored with their career and end up doing crazy stuff and messing up what they have built up. I do not drink I do not smoke I do not do anything, I love my kids to death, I love my mother, I love my life and I love God. It is about taking responsibility for the people that are behind you and love you and making sure that they are taken care of, that’s what it is about.
Jeremy Copeland: What are your plans for the rest of the remaining year of 2012?
Teddy Riley: I want to get into more charities and get into more of the media world. I want to be a role model to children who need it the most. I want to get into more after school programs and anything I can do to build the children and build them as role models and set examples. That’s why I came back to Atlanta because before you do it for other kids you must do it for your own. I have been brainstorming with my team and we have great visions for the future and I have a lot of music and recordings on the way. I am a designer of sound; I am an architect of what I do and my music. I am legend and I must continue to make legendary timeless music.