DJ Premier


Christopher “DJ Premier” Martin was born on March 21st, 1966 in Houston, Texas. From a young age his mother would prime his mind to express himself creatively by putting him in piano and drawing classes. Although he was not genuinely interested in either of these activities he would always have a certain love for the music. After moving to Brooklyn, the summers he spent with his grandfather would be the catalyst in him deciding to start his music career. 1977 was the summer that the music would completely encapsulate him. He was surrounded by B-Boys breakdancing in Times Square, kids dancing to the funky Jimmy Castor out of a boombox and the rich culture of musical festivals being held that summer. With the help of the musical backdrop of DJ Kool Herc, Bambatta and Grandmaster Flash during the late 70's, Hip-Hop reached his hometown of Houston when he went back to enroll in college. From there he met DJ RP Cola who showed Christopher the ropes of how to mix and scratch music on the turntables. He went on to steal his first set of turntables and from there his musical career began. 

While attending Prairie View A&M University Christopher was not into attending class but was really into DJing at parties and going to music concerts. While performing with the group they created known as MC's In Control he was going by Waxmaster C. Originally, Christopher was trying to make it as a MC and would move to Brooklyn to do just that while having his day job as a daycare counselor. It was in New York when he linked up with the Boston-based group Gang Starr that needed a DJ. After this encounter was where he birthed his new moniker: DJ Premier. Both fortunately and unfortunately for Premier, the only MC of the group, Guru, would be the only member who relocated to Brooklyn along with the Gang Starr name. From then on they developed a beautiful and legendary chemistry on Gang Starr Productions that would include albums such as Moment of Truth and No More Mr. Nice Guy.

What makes Preemo so masterful on the beats is his attention to detail and his unwillingness to ever put out something that doesn't touch his soul. He always strives to top himself which is why his production credits are far too long to list. He has produced Hip-Hop classic songs on classic albums such as Nas Illmatic, Jay-Z's Reasonable Doubt & even Notorious BIG on Ready to Die. He is currently part of the Hip Hop duo PRhyme along with Detroit-based MC Royce da 5'9".

Here is a good list of Primo's production credits but in no way does it capture all of the gems he continues to bless us with to this very day. 

Keep grindin' Preemo. Keep grindin'.

Peep the dope Soundcloud mix below of his classic production and even the video below that details his first encounter with up & coming hip-hop phenomenon Joey BadA$$!

Preemo meeting Joey Badass for the first time and kicking knowledge to Joey about the Rap game. Preemo also gives us insight on he makes the crazy "Unorthodox" beat for Joey.

All music is good music if it touches your soul. That’s the bottomline of how I walk this planet. If it don’t touch your soul then keep it moving.
— Direct quote from DJ Premier interview on GGN with Snoop Dogg

Joey Bada$$' official music video for his single "Unorthodox" (Produced by DJ Premier) can be described as just that: Unorthodox. Directed by acclaimed directors Coodie & Chike from Creative Control, the video takes the audience on an illustrated journey with Joey, the Pro Era crew, and DJ Premier through the cold streets of Brooklyn.

Notorious BIG Unbelievable track from his album Ready to Die. Executively produced by DJ Premier

Mos Def "Mathematics" song on his album Black On Both Sides produced by Dj Premier.