The Making of Timeless Music: A Conversation with Jay Worthy and Harry Fraud

When it comes to artists that have been able to build out catalogs with timeless music due to their acute knowledge of classic records far exceeds the average person, there aren’t many that have the depth of taste quite like Harry Fraud and Jay Worthy. Both artists definitely have similar influences throughout their music, the fact that it has taken this long for their paths to cross is actually surprising. They are both kindred souls that have an affinity for a certain time period that is insanely easy to picture once their project starts playing, an era that always hits smooth when the weather starts getting warmer. As restrictions begin to slowly lift, there’s no doubt  Eat When You’re Hungry Sleep When You’re Tired will be played in cars cruising slowly throughout the country.

If you know anything about Jay Worthy, its that he is by far one of the most interesting characters in the industry. Hell, he is the uncle to the most talked about children in recent memory X Æ A-12. Worthy is a man with ties to nearly every big name to come out in the past decade, his genuine attitude and consistent output of timeless classics has built himself a platform where nearly everybody can look to his catalog and show unanimous love for the work he has put in. There’s no surprise that super producers like Harry Fraud gravitate towards Worthy. It seems that those talented in producing are inspired by his musical knowledge and the stories he has to tell on his records. Jay Worthy has lived more life than most and it comes accross in the music he creates. With traditional hip hop staples like Griselda rising in profile its only a matter of time before Jay Worthy becomes more than your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper.

I recently hopped on the phone with Jay Worthy and Harry Fraud to discuss their new EP Eat When You’re Hungry Sleep When You’re Tired and the story of how they linked up. Beyond that, these are two of the rap’s most proven veterans that have finally linked up to create timeless music. They teased more collaborations in the future but read to learn what went into this project!

Stream Eat When You’re Hungry Sleep When You’re Tired on all platforms here!

How have you both been staying creative during quarantine?

WORTHY: I’m good, we not tripping. We pushing through it, the album doing good. I’m not even worried about this shit no more I’m adjusted, Imma tell you that I’m adjusted.

FRAUD: I think I’m on the same, I’m in Brooklyn so the quarantine part of it is a bit heavier. I set the studio up in the house and just been working like crazy. Trying to keep my mind off everything else and just stay focused on work.

How have you found it not being able to work with artists in the studio?

FRAUD: I mean I think for me, that was never really my thing sending music around, I was always more of an in-studio guy. That’s a result of a lot of the artists I work with I’m close with so we just end up being physically in the same room. I think this whole thing has made me open up to it way more and I can’t tell you how many artists are hitting me up on a constant level like, “Yo send me a pack. Send me a pack. Send me a pack”. They realize too that if they’re not proactive about going out and getting the production that they want, they’re not going to be in the studios or centralized places where they can have all of the producers they want to work with pull up so its a give and take on both sides. Its been effective though, we’ve gotten a lot done.

How did you two link up?

WORTHY: The boy Big Body Bes, you already know!

FRAUD: Bes had hit me one day like, “Yo, I got this guy Jay Worthy with me can I bring him to the studio?” I said yeah but don’t come through with a million people cause sometimes Bes be rolling through crazy. He said nah, nah, nah we coming to work and that means its 50/50, ya know.

WORTHY: That might mean 4 o clock and fucking snoring on your studio chair waking up with drool.

FRAUD: Yeah, but you know we brought Worthy through and we clicked up immediately. Its weird all the guys I really click up their music knowledge is really deep. French, Action, Spitta, Worthy, they’re listening to so much stuff outside of what we’re making or hip-hop. Worthy started playing shit saying “You should sample this!” or “You should flip this!”. He was just playing hard shit and we just built from there. It was really easy we just started making shit immediately.

Surprised you haven’t linked up before, your production style lines up with Worthy’s energy perfectly. I gotta ask, what is Body like in the studio?

FRAUD: I mean he’s larger than life. One thing about Bod, obviously what’s doing is so genuine and the energy is so genuine on it, it’s really like capturing lightning in a bottle. He’s been working on this mixtape so when we started working on that I was trying to do it more traditional like go into the booth, record your verse. Now, if I know he’s gonna record I set the mic up in the room and once he gets into that rhythm of him snapping on people and into that vibe we just turn on the mic and go. Ya gotta catch lightning in the bottle.

When did you two decide to work on a project together?

WORTHY: It wasn’t even like we decided to do it. We just kept making record and by the end of it we were like we got a solid body of work, ya feel me.

FRAUD: I agree, we just made a lot of shit and the project kind of put itself together

You guys both share a love for older music, what were some of your biggest influences going into recording this project?

FRAUD: We always kept talking about late 70s/80s Miami and going to Atlantic City Casinos. A lot of player talk, you know what I mean? That’s what was the muse for the album thematically, the glitz and glamour contrast. That was our vibe, glitz and glamour, an elite feel but just as much sleaze put in there.

WORTHY: A lot of sleaze.

FRAUD: Sleaze is very important!

WORTHY: That’s just it. Fraud will tell you, he calls me the roller skating king. He says I always rap on shit that would play at the roller arena. So we definitely dug into some 80s shit but just as much as 70s and soul shit, we were all over the map as far as going into the crates.

Where did the Flute sample from “Ice Cold P Mix” come from?

FRAUD: That’s crazy, that’s actually not a sample. That’s my in house band, shouts out to them. Shouts out to Red Walrus, shots out Chris playing the flute on there. My man Walrus kind of musically directs a group of different players that create all these “samples” for us. Source material for us to pull from. That joint right there, Worthy and I were trying to figure out the right pimpery vibe. When we had the flute, we had a couple different instruments going on and the post production on that was finished afterwards. I was face timing him trying to plan my ideas and shit, as soon as I played him that one it caught him so crazy. Through that we just crushed the sample rates and dirtied it up a bunch so it would have that grit so you would think it was a sample.

Is that what most of the project is?

FRAUD: I mean its a mix of all kinds of stuff. For me, I don’t like to single things out like “that’s not a sample, that’s not a sample!” because honestly, my idea is to just blend everything together so smooth you can’t tell the difference.

WORTHY: That’s crazy Fraud. I didn’t even know that flute wasn’t a sample, that’s cold. I thought that was a sample it sounded classic.

Are there any new genres that have excited you lately to sample or work with in your production?

FRAUD: I think I’m always trying to do that. I’m always trying to look for different pockets, a lot of time that gives a lot of inspiration for where you’re going with the beat obviously. I’m always trying to push myself to find different genres, lately, I’ve been on…I don’t even want to say it…I’ve been digging crazy into old latin soul records lately, all in Spanish. I’ve always loved progressive synth bass stuff, but that’s from different eras because it has a different warmth to it that some of our new synths that always stay in the box, it’s hard to get the same warmth that they was getting on tape back then. I mean obviously digging in other countries, I always find good records in other countries.

Jay what about you? You’ve rapped on so many style of beats, is there anything new you’re excited to work on?

WORTHY: Much like Fraud, I don’t like to box myself in. I’m very comfortable rapping on certain beats, loops of course, that’s like my comfort zone but I always like to challenge myself and get on shit that may not sound like I would get on it. For example, Cee-Lo Green sent me a record I did with him last night and you would not think Worthy would get on this shit, you know what I’m saying? It’s a challenge and its actually fun to see what you can do differently getting out of your comfort zone.

FRAUD: Worthy to his credit is a great songwriter with that. Worthy is so versatile, he’s not one of those artists where you don’t want to play him a beat because you think he might not fuck with it. You can play Jay anything and if it’s hot he’s gonna have an idea. Whether it ends up being the final song or not, he’s gonna have an idea for it he’s not scared of that type of shit.

WORTHY: Word, real shit there was joints that we did that was totally different. Some current shit that you would hear, some bops, but didn’t fit this body of work. We definitely went in on some whole other shit.

FRAUD: Yeah definitely.

I guess it’s safe to expect more music from you both in the future?

FRAUD: 100%

WORTHY: For sure.

What else can people expect from you this year Jay?

WORTHY: Next up I’m gonna finish up this EP series I’m doing. Next up is Shlohmo and after that should be the Dâm-Funk EP. I’m going to keep the rest a surprise.

What about you Fraud?

I just finished working on this EP that I had started with Lil Peep. So we just wrapped that, had to get into all the post-production and workout the release and all that. You can expect to hear that, some people had known about it and I’m always getting asked about it so I really just finished all the post-production. Me and Benny just finished the Plug I Met Part 2, so that’s probably the next project people will hear is the Plus I Met Part 2 with Benny and that’s crazy. Really, some of the best work I’ve done in my career. Same with the Peep stuff, I’m so proud of it. It’s really me jumping out of what people know me for, combining elements of what he was really known for.