Producer Luney Tunez has been working behind-the-scenes in the industry for several years, placing beats with rappers from Gorilla Zoe and Young Joc to P$C and Playaz Circle. At the end of 2011, he had one of his biggest tracks yet with "Go Harder" for Future.
This year he surpassed that milestone with a beat on Rihanna's newest album, "Loveeeeeee Song," a subtly sexy track that features Future.
We spoke with the Louisiana-born, Atlanta-based producer about his favorite beats, working with some of the music's best talents, and how the standout track on Rihanna's record came about.
Interview by David Drake (@somanyshrimp)
Can you tell me about how the record came about?
That was one of the beats I really don’t like. It wasn’t one of my favorites. When I made it, I was in the mindset of being real, melodic, laid back, and sexy. I knew it was going to be a pop-female record, but when I made the beat, that’s how I felt. I didn’t want to put too many instruments in it.
Working with Future, I produced two hits with him in “Go Harder.” It was the second single off [Pluto]. That’s one of L.A. Reid’s favorite songs. It’s definitely one of LA Reid’s top, top Future records right there. I also produced this record called “Rider” with Tasha Catour. That was definitely a hot record for him and got a lot of buzz on the Astronaut Status mixtape. It’s really just continuing the chemistry working with Future and vibing in the studio together.
He was just saying you needed some soft R&B, somewhat ghetto a little bit. It was one of the ones I played to him and he went in and did his thing. Shout out to Rihanna. They loved it and the rest is just history.
How did you end up connecting with Future in the first place?
Really just being out networking on the streets. I’ve known him for a while. It’s just being out and running into him. I’ve produced for a lot of folks from Gorilla Zoe, Yung Joc. I used to be signed to Block [Ent.] back in ‘06/’07. It’s really just buzz getting around and me doing my thing as far with the beats. I got a chance to prove myself with “Go Harder” being the smash with Epic. They picked it up as the second single and it’s just really continuing the chemistry working with him.
The first time I really met him was in the studio, just vibing. The first time we met, we were just vibing. He did like four or five hooks to my beats and it was really just kicking it from there. We let him in the studio and he was real cool, down to Earth, humble. Definitely a real talented guy. He definitely got some hits on his belt.
Being in the studio working with him is like—I play him the beat and we would both be bouncing off each other’s vibe. He’ll just go in and get in that zone. He can go into the studio with no pen or pad off the top. He won’t write nothing down. He would have that vibe and that aura. He’ll just make hits, really.
When did you first hear the version with Rihanna on it?
I first heard it—my homegirl had tweeted me. She’s like, “Check this out.” They had put out the little snippets, you know, like a week before the album comes out. I heard it and I was like, “Wow.” It’s crazy. All the hardest work is definitely paying off. I’m just really staying down and grinding because if you had asked me, “Yo, what do you think of being on a Rihanna album next year?” I would be like, “Ah, that’s not possible.” You never know where your talents can really take you. It’s definitely a blessing to be part of something real amazing. Rihanna is international.
What are your five favorite songs you've produced?
I really like that Gorilla Zoe, Gucci Mane “Walk With A Waddle.” It’s real simple. What’s my other favorite? I really like the “Loveeeeeee Song.” When I first did the beat, I did not even budge or think about Rihanna and Future being on the song. It’s definitely becoming one of my favorites. I got this song on super repeat. I went and bought the album in a day. I was surprised myself to not see my name in the credits. I was definitely surprised but they’re going to fix it. It’s all good—I ain’t tripping.
I like “Go Harder.” It’s definitely an inspirational song. If you’re down and out, you just go harder and really get motivation and feel like you can conquer the world after you hear that song. [Laughs.] I got this one song I produced that’s one of my songs called “Powerful Drawz.” It’s definitely for the ladies. That’s one of my other ones.
A lot of people don’t know about that one. On the remix, there’s Yung Joc and Gorilla Zoe. [Laughs.] It’s definitely a ladies’ top pick. I’m still working and there’s still more to come. This is just the beginning and has opened up a lot of doors and a lot of people on my line trying to get their “Loveeeeeee Song.”
Let’s see. I did this record with Jim Jones. It’s a Hustle Boy feature with Jim Jones called “Bofum.” That’s another one of my top Luney Tunez bangers.
Are you hoping to do more R&B production?
Yeah, of course. A lot people see this whole rap—Rap beats are cool but with pop beats and R&B beats; you get rich off those. [Laughs.] So definitely. I don’t really do it for the money. I just do it because I’m really good at it talent-wise. I enjoy it.