Since the separation of underground music and major labels, dream music collaborations have always been nothing more than hopeful wishes. You’ve always had that favorite underground producer who you wish would do a track with that famous major label rapper, but instead of having your dreams realized you see your favorite rapper churn out another terrible, big label release under the restricted and watchful eye of people who love money more than music.
Luckily, these days, with a great deal of help from the Internet, some fantasy collaborations are finally coming to fruition. Although, with that being said, I don’t think I wanted to see Hudson Mohawke working with Kanye West but I did want to see him making the crossover to major label rap, so Ye will have to do for now. Plus it will be interesting to see how big an already huge sound can get.
Although rap is generally where we wish we’d see some of these more outrageous dreams come true, one of the areas I feel like they would be the most enjoyable is in conglomeration with Rhythm & Blues singers. We’ve already seen how successful it can be with Abel Tesfaye working with Zodiac and Illangelo and just a couple of weeks ago we were treated to another successful collaboration when WeDidIt’s Shlohmo and Def Jam’s R&B heartthrob Jeremih came together to produce “Bo Peep, (Do U Right). San Fransisco based video/music outlet Yours Truly had the two get together and create a song as apart of their “Songs From Scratch” series which had produced some what successful collaborations in the past (Lunice & Angel Haze, Danny Brown & Araabmuzik) but “Bo Peep” is by far the best.
There are two things that have occurred in recent years that not only made this collaboration happen, but made it work so cohesively. The first is the emergence of DJs as true artists. Djs have obviously been around for years, and have been BEHIND the scenes of every major artist to grace your ears, but never has their presence been felt so strongly as independent, standalone, artists as it is today. And its not just a few talented artists in the UK who have some brilliant minds and are floating in a music cloud above us Americans; its Djs and producers from all over the soundclouds universe who are gaining notoriety. The second and probably most reaching claim I will make is about the current state of R&B. The Weeknd happened, and I realize that it wasn’t just Abel Tesfaye who was incorporating a whole plethora of interesting and new sounds to his crooning, but he did make quite a splash and reopened a somewhat desolate genre that had been recreating some of the same music we had already heard before. Despite your feelings of the pre-Weekdnd R&B landscape, there is no denying that his popularity made it a lot easier to get on Pitchfork and gain popularity by having interesting production and a willingness to experiment a little.
So yeah, these things made for an artistic atmosphere that would allow for this to work, and an audience that would allow this to succeed, not to mention it just sounds really great. It is obvious that Shlohmo stands alone as an independent artist, and Jeremih an experienced R&B veteran throughout the track. So I think its especially fitting that the song’s artist is titled “Shlohmo & Jeremiah” and not one featuring the other. The two work together masterfully and you can tell the cohesion and chemistry is there. Throughout the track Jeremih’s crooning takes center stage, then backs off a little bit while Shlohmos production takes the spotlight. They are in perfect harmony throughout and that’s what makes it so brilliant. No one oversteps their boundaries, and instead of getting a strictly R&B tune or a strictly electronic track, we get “Shlohmo & Jeremih,” a collaboration in its most pure form.
Just recently Shlohmo had a performance in San Francisco where Jeremih was the special guest. What other collaboration works out so well that the two then put a show on together? Remember when TNGHT did a show in New York and Kanye West came out and wildly waved his hands and mouthed some lyrics? Yeah, that is the future of these dream collab performances. Either way, I love it. You can watch the creation of the song below as apart of the series, and download the track as well.