“The Record Producer”
Recording Studio – Rapper “Lil BJ” enters the room – His manager greets him
Manager: (shakes hand) Well, there he is! My new “platinum star”! I’m real glad you made it and I’ve noticed you came a little early
BJ: Yeah man, I had nothin’ else to do
Manager: Right, right I agree. Did you like the hotel? Did they treat you like a king?
BJ: Naw man, place sucked!
Manager: Oh no! Why BJ?
BJ: the room service sucked man, plus they didn’t have HBO
Manager: Oh no, that’s not good! Don’t worry first thing in the morning I’ll get the manager of that place fired! I’ll see to that!
BJ: yeah man, you do that. Made me miss my shows and all that! Hey where’s that producer of yours anyway?
Manager: oh, he’s coming in now
BJ: you sure this guy is alright?
Manager: trust me Lil BJ! This kid is the best! Michael Stephen recommended this kid. He told me he just graduated from school; he has a degree in this!
Manager: Absolutely! You know how much I look out for my favorite “platinum star”
BJ: (chuckles and fist pumps the manager) that’s cool man, that’s cool. I trust you
(Eric, a very young looking record producer enters; he’s talking on his cell phone)
Eric: (upset) listen, tell Maggie I’m going to end it all! Yeah, yeah just tell her I’m going to hang myself tonight if she doesn’t say yes. JUST DO IT! I have to go now! (Puts the phone in his pocket) Well, hello fellas (smiles)
BJ: (worried) are you alright there; little man?
Eric: Oh what? Me? (Realizes) Oh! (Laughs) don’t worry about that; just wanted to scare some girl to accept my engagement proposal. No big deal. Ever since the restraining order she has against me; our relationship has been rocky.
BJ: Yeah, right
Manager: Lil BJ, this is Eric Winters (BJ and Eric shake hands)
Eric: It’s going to be an honor to work with a big star as yourself
BJ: yeah, likewise
Eric: So “BJ” Why the name “BJ”?
BJ: What about it?
Eric: I’m just wondering; it’s a little weird name for a hip hop artists. Is it a nickname you got from prison?
BJ: (getting angry) I’ve never been in jail man!
Manager: Yeah, what are you trying to say?
Eric: Um, I don’t know just saying does “BJ” stand for “blowj…
BJ: (interrupts) Bishop Jones, man! My name is Bishop Jones
Eric: Oh! Right, right! Now that makes sense!
Manager: Can we get this show on the road already!?
Eric: right! Right (walks over to the control panel) Alright Mr. Jones just step in the sound room and make a hit!
Manager: (laughs) now that’s the attitude I’m looking for! You heard that BJ!?
BJ: Yeah, I like this kid (steps into the sound room; picks up the headphones that were resting on a stand)
Eric: (on to the microphone) just give me the sign and we’ll start
BJ: (nods and then gives the sign by lifting his thumb)
(Eric gets the sign and programs a beat)
BJ: (getting into the groove) Aight, aight. This is good. Yo, this goes to all of my peoples out in Philly!
(After 4 beats the music transforms into sounds of whales and combating airplanes with a heavy douse of distortion)
BJ: (immediately takes off the headphones; furious) WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT MAN!?
Eric: what!? (Stops recording) why did you stop!?
Manager: (angry) what are you doing!?
Eric: my job! What else!?
BJ: Are you sure about that!? What kind of a track is that!?
Eric: what do you mean? What was the problem?
BJ: Man it sounded like whales were having sex or something! How am I going to rap over that!?
Eric: Okay to you it could be that but to others it’s “art”!
Manager: (sighs) your kidding right?
Eric: I’m kidding? (Points to the wall where his diploma is hanging) I have a B.A. on music production! Alright? So that piece of paper basically shows the world that I never kid around when it comes to music! Got me!?
Manager: Calm down kid, calm down. We get it. Do you have another beat we can use?
Eric: sure, I have a butt load
Manager: alright good, let’s do that track again
Eric: (on the mic) are you ready BJ?
BJ: whatever man
Eric: (smiles; looks at the manager) you gotta love his spirit (presses a button that begins a piano melody)
BJ: (to the mic) alright, feelin’ it now. This goes out to my mamma in Philly; look at me, your baby boy made it! Aight check it…
(The piano melody instantly stops and the voice of Richard Nixon takes place)
BJ: (takes off the headphones in anger) WHAT YOU DOIN!?
Eric: (stops recording) what now!? Seriously!?
Manager: Listen kid! We wanted a simple beat! Not a guy’s speech!
Eric: Okay first of all, that’s rude! That “guy” was Richard Nixon, okay? One of out countries better presidents, a little respect alright? And second; what’s with the complaining!? That was a perfect track!
Manager: “Perfect track”!? In what world are you living in!?
Eric: Hold on, excuse me! Tell me who in this room graduated from “The University of California”!? Who!? Come on; just raise your hands (raises his hand) Okay, I thought so! It’s quite obvious I know what I’m doing!
Manager: (frustrated) you know what? Give us another beat we can work with. Something that doesn’t have any “art” on it
Eric: (grins) Ah, so you want something “old school”? Is that it?
Manager: yeah, yeah whatever
Eric: this is what I’m talking about! (To the mic) Are you ready for another take BJ?
BJ: I don’t even know anymore
Eric: (shakes his head; to the manager) You gotta love this guy, I swear!
(Eric presses the button and records. After seconds pass not a sound is heard)
BJ: Yo, where’s the beat?
Eric: That is the beat
Manager: what are you talking about?
Eric: Well you said you wanted something “old school” here it is. I call this track “silence” pretty “artistic” right?
BJ: (takes off the headphone and leaves the sound room in anger) I’m outta here man! I don’t have time for this!
Manager: Yeah let’s go (BJ and the manager head to the door; Eric stops them by dashing to the door)
Eric: Hold it! Wait please! You can’t leave!
Manager: Get out of our way!
Eric: You have to listen to me! I’ve tried so hard to make it big in the business. Nobody understands my style of music! I’ve been fired from so many artists it’s just ridiculous! So please fellas, just give me one more chance and I’ll promise I won’t fail the both you!
BJ: (thinks and then) Know what? Fine one more shot
Manager: you sure about this BJ?
BJ: yeah, why not? If he plays around again I’ll just bash his face in with my new brass knuckle
Eric: (nervous) Okay. Alright. There’s no need for all of that.
(BJ enters the sound room and picks up the headphone; Eric goes to the control panel)
Eric: whenever you’re ready; BJ (picks up a sheet of paper from the control panel)
BJ: Aight, ready!
(Eric presses the button; a simple drum beat is heard. After 4 beats Eric stops the track)
BJ: what the hell man!? That was a good track!
Eric: (reads the paper) I’m sorry BJ; is this the lyrics?
Manager: yeah, that’s going to be the single
Eric: Right, I’ve just read this thing and I have to say; it’s pretty weak
Eric: yeah, but luckily I’ll help you rewrite some parts
Manager: (sighs) it doesn’t matter!
Eric: yes it does! I won’t let some horrible lyrics accompany my amazing beats! (Takes out a pen and note pad from his pocket) Do I need to remind you boys about my degree in music? (Begins writing on the pad)