After a year that's seen work with Sean Price, Erykah Badu, Lil Wayne and his own Dream Merchant Volume 2 album, North Carolina Grammy-winning producer 9th Wonder is hard at work for his Asylum Records debut release The Wonder Years in January.
The ascent to the bigger label also means bigger sound, according to the musical creator. "Sonically, people
can expect bigger sounding beats, more expansion of my sound. There will be an element of classic, throwback R&B, but with a current
twist. With this album, I'm not only defining myself, but I'm defining people in
my age group. It's not necessarily an underground or overground thing, you just
want to find the music that fits you and where you are in your life right about
now. That's what The Wonder Years is for me."
The Wonder Years features appearances from Erykah Badu, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Q-Tip as well as another after-the-fact track from Little Brother, the trio-turned-duo that 9th was in until earlier this year.
9th's successes this year and anticipation for next are part of a bigger plan, according to the producer. "My calling is
soul music - just good for the soul and good to listen to," he says. "It's more
reminiscent of the great pantheon of black music, and I want to be mentioned in
that somewhere. Somebody has to come along and join what Common and all of these
other great emcees started, we really have to start looking at the situation of how
we affect young black men and women. In the past music has been used for good,
music has always had a message in it, and I just want to be a part of that
Earlier this week, a new video was released from Murs & 9th Wonder's Murray's Revenge album, "Yesterday and Today." [Click here to watch]