GET FAMILIAR: THEN WHAt aka Selfish Presley
Michael “Logik” Levesque is a hard working man. He produces as THEN WHAt and raps as Selfish Presley, and in the past year, he’s stepped up his game considerably. Both in terms of his output — a steady stream of strong singles and collaborations — and especially in terms of the sheer quality. His beats, his bars and his engineering are all impressively clean. While it’s been a great run so far, he assures me: this is only the beginning.
VTHH: You've got a lot of projects and a lot of creative outlets -- how do you juggle all that? Is there a system, or does infinite hustle just come naturally for you?
THEN WHAt: I’ve just never been the type to only have one thing going on at a time. So I guess it never seems like a lot to me. All the people I look up to always have multiple things going on, so I definitely draw from that. Why limit yourself?
VTHH: Your production game is on point - when and where did you hone your style and get the practical experience?
THEN WHAt: Well, I started producing when I was 15. Everyone I knew wanted to rap, but there were no beat makers around that I knew. So I never had anyone to learn from. I would just kind of draw from the music I was listening to at the time. Fast forward to the past few years. I sent Jibba “The Gent” that beat for Maple Syrup and soon after was recruited to the SO.802 team as an in house producer. Been working really close with Brad Vazy ever since, and he’s really helped me expand on what I already do very well.
VTHH: Are you part of the Street Religion team? Those cats really need a Wu-style poster breaking the roster down.
THEN WHAt: Yo, me and Breeze were talking about this the other day. I feel like Redman. Like the unofficial member. It’s never been discussed, honestly. Right now the roster is small. It’s Yung Breeze, Raw Deff and Jun Fargo. We family regardless though, and we’re all under the same umbrella anyway with So.802. A team poster would be dope though!
VTHH: What was it like working on The Others with Raw Deff? Is there going to be a followup?
THEN WHAt: Man! That was a trippy experience. Me and Deff started building that project before we had even met in person. I sent him like 3 beats I thought he might like and he had full songs back to me within a day or two. At that time I was used to waiting months to get a song back. So it just became clear we had a chemistry and we should make a whole album. We ARE working on a follow up project, and I’m stoked because I’ve been waiting to get back up in the studio with Deff for 2 years. This one is gonna be special.
VTHH: You've been on a hot streak with the singles lately. Are you clearing out some archives, or prepping for a new project?
THEN WHAt: Yeah that’s actually all new stuff. I’ve been lucky recently to have full access to my friends studio space and I’ve been in a good creative zone. But I’m definitely putting a project together! I don’t think it will include any of my singles. Just wanted some material out there so I’m not forever known as just the beats guy
VTHH: What other projects are you working on now? Is there going to be a Selfish Presley album at some point?
THEN WHAt: I’m working with a handful of artists. Got a lot of people coming to me for beats right now. Honestly the list of new songs and projects coming is too long, but we work fast and I can’t wait for it all to be heard and show people how diverse I am as a producer.
I’m definitely working on an album. It’s going to be called No Sleep. I’m taking my time on that though. I want it to be done right.