Tranquil Beats by IV the Polymath
Who are you? / Describe what has influenced you to become who you are?
I’m IV the Polymath: a music composer, producer & multi-instrumentalist out of Phoenix, Arizona. I started playing music when I was two years old so it’s always been there. Growing up my family moved around a lot & music was really the only constant in my life. I got into my Mom’s record collection which included a lot of great jazz & then my Dad was heavy into Mowtown so those are influences, but really my music just comes from raw emotion. I was in punk rock bands throughout high school just being angry & stuff. Now that I’m older & more chill I like to express myself through jazz, funk & hip hop – but it still always stems from emotions & experiences.
How was this particular selection born? ( Its roots/ some of the featured artists on your list)
The playlist includes my favorite songs of the moment in addition to my favorite songs of all time. It’s all mellow, but I really wanted to share a wide range of stuff. There’s some 60s & 70s jazz classics in there like Kool & the Gang, Bob James, etc. as well as some of my favorite producers of today (Tall Black Guy, Flako, Jenova 7, etc.). I’ve got some stuff most people have probably never heard of & then some classics like Portishead, Pete Rock, etc. It’s all over the place, but in a good way – and it’s chilled.
What are some of the main challenges you find today in finding beats/instrumentals? /How do you navigate through today’s climate online/vinyl etc?
There’s just so much music coming out right now it’s ridiculous. It’s great that everybody is doing their thing & having a chance to be heard, but at the same time it’s exhausting to try to find new stuff all the time. It’s worth it though. There are some labels & artists who are consistent that I keep an eye on, but then there is so much epic stuff out there that no one has even heard of yet. I’m always looking for that stuff so when I have time I’ll get lost in the depths of Bandcamp or Soundcloud or YouTube. Even on Instagram & Twitter I’ve come across some really promising beatmakers & musicians. I still dig for records & cassettes too, but not as much – it’s more for sport than new music discovery these days.
How do you see the beat scene/ instrumental scene/ production scene evolving?
To be honest, it’s getting a little too out there for my personal tastes. The technology is so advanced now that producers don’t really have any limitations anymore. Sounds great in theory, but the result seems to be a lot of cats just trying to do way too much. Just because you can throw 20 different effects on something doesn’t make it sound good. I respect the progression of the art form & I think some people are doing it really well, but it’s my hope that it will settle down a bit & just go back to focusing on vibes, textures & emotions vs. trying to flex super hard with the technology. I get it though – it’s such a saturated scene now that everybody is doing whatever they can to stand out. But at the end of the day, I personally want to hear stuff that makes me feel a certain way vs. being impressed by drops & stutters & that kinda stuff. I think there’s a lot of great music still coming out though that is a bit more organic sounding & that’s what I gravitate towards.
What is the most important thing you listen for when you search for new gems?
How does it make me feel? I want to hear music that gives me the chills. I don’t care about anything else besides good vibes & a good mix.
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