Editor’s note: In Tweets is Watching, Phillip Mlynar asks local artists questions based solely on the contents of their Twitter timeline.
Twenty years ago, the Brooklyn hip-hop group Black Moon released an album titled Enta Da Stage. It was a project underscored with production from Da Beatminerz, a unit headed by DJ Evil Dee and Mr. Walt. Along with basking in the glow of having worked on a certified rap classic, these days Walt and Evil spin records around the city and run Beatminerz Radio, an outlet where Mr. Walt promises “we play nothing but good music — if you’re tired of hearing what you’re hearing, tune into us.” While you line up their airwave attack in the background, here’s Walt and Evil running through their Twitter timelines about A Tribe Called Quest’s Midnight Marauders photoshoot, Halloween costumes, and an appreciation of the movie Zack and Miri Make a Porno.
20 YEARS AGO TODAY “ENTA DA STAGE” YEP!
— Mr. Walt/Evil Dee (@Beatminerz) October 19, 2013
It’s 20 years since Black Moon’s Enta Da Stage was released. What’s your fondest memory of working on that project?
Mr. Walt: Just being a young guy coming up in the game and recording and being in the studio around that time. It was really just making a record. We weren’t making a record for radio — we were just recording and seeing where we were going. I remember towards the end of recording it we’d go to the offices of people in the industry or some of our rapper and producer friends to see what they thought and everyone loved what they heard.
Evil Dee: Man, I remember it was a journey, basically: Putting the whole thing together, from beginning to the end, getting to the studio and making the beats, constructing the songs, it’s a whole lot of memories. One of the things that did stand out was going to the studio from midnight until eight in the morning; that was crazy.
Did anyone ever fall asleep?
Evil Dee: Nah, ’cause back then we did a lot of stuff at night, we’d work in the night and sleep during the day.
If you could go back and do Enta Da Stage again, would you change anything?
Mr. Walt: I would change the sound quality of it! I say this to people and they’re like, “Oh, no, don’t change it, we like it like that.” But I feel like that is one of the worst mastered records ever in recording history! The reason why is because I was so tired. We had a session right before mastering and our sessions were from 12 midnight until eight o’clock in the morning and A Tribe Called Quest had a photoshoot for Midnight Marauders the next day in the morning. I was too tired to go to the session. I was too tired to go to the photoshoot. Buckshot, Evil Dee and Five Ft. went to the Midnight Marauders photoshoot so we left Michael Weiss [of Nervous Records] to do mastering by himself and it sounded terrible. We will never ever do that again.
Evil Dee: I remember I ran from the studio, did the Tribe Called Quest joint, and then ran back to D&D! It was dope, they were acknowledging us as hip-hop cats and I thought that was real dope. When we went to the photoshoot there wasn’t a lot of other people there — they had people coming in and out at different hours.
Do you regret missing the Midnight Marauders photoshoot?
Mr. Walt: Nah, I’m the back guy, I don’t need to be up front like that. I regret not going to master it though!
@thatsimpsonguy Sir. Check your DM, please
— Mr. Walt/Evil Dee (@Beatminerz) October 13, 2013
I noticed a request for Guilty Simpson to DM you. Does that mean a collaboration is coming soon?
Mr. Walt: Something is coming… Nothing is etched in stone yet; we’re talking. I would love to work with him but this is just the beginning stages. But really, I contact people for myself, just people I want to work with. If they don’t hit me back, at least on my end I know I tried to make it happen.
What about Evil Dee?
Evil Dee: Right now, I’m working on a bunch of beats. I keep making beats. I’m working on a project with Rock from Heltah Skeltah and I’m working on a project with Craig G. I also have a couple of things for myself I want to do, like I’m thinking of a free Evil Dee download album. I’m debating on that one. It would be my production with guest rappers. A lot of cats are asking me to do something like that so I might just make that happen and give it away.
— Mr. Walt/Evil Dee (@Beatminerz) October 22, 2013
You’ve both been tweeting about a Halloween party you’re playing it. What will you be dressing up as this year?
Mr. Walt: I’m too old to dress up, I’m going as Mr. Walt.
Evil Dee: Yeah, I don’t think I’ll be dressing up this year either.
What does the Mr. Walt outfit involve?
Mr. Walt: A pair of Pumas, some jeans, and a Yankees hat.
What would you dress up as for Halloween when you were a kid?
Mr. Walt: Batman. I was always Batman. I was a Batman fanatic. That was the first superhero that I recognized. I was drawn to him as a child.
If Mr. Walt was a superhero, what sort of powers would he have?
Mr. Walt: Trying to save hip-hop! I would protect you and go out and stop corny hip-hop from getting to your ears.
Who would be your nemesis?
Mr. Walt: Anyone who doesn’t take DJing seriously. I’m not going to say any of the rappers today — I’m not going to say that — but just anyone who doesn’t take hip-hop seriously and doesn’t take time to study the pioneers before them. That would be my nemesis.
@MissyTorresNYC Lol! Watched “Zach & Miri” last night. Got some new things.
— Mr. Walt/Evil Dee (@Beatminerz) October 12, 2013
I take it you’re a fan of Zack and Miri Make a Porno?
Mr. Walt: Yeah, it’s very good, it’s a classic movie. I really enjoyed it.
What other movies have you recently enjoyed?
Mr. Walt: In that vein, like as Zack and Miri, I recently saw The Heat which was really good and We’re the Millers. Anything with Seth Rogen or Paul Rudd is good.
Have you ever been approached to soundtrack a movie?
Mr. Walt: We’ve had people come to us and said they wanted us to score a movie. We’re down for it. I mean, we’ve been on a couple of soundtracks as far as that goes, but we’d definitely love to score a movie. Unfortunately the ones where we were approached, the movies fell through and so it didn’t happen.
If you could score any movie, what would you pick?
Mr. Walt: I have a friend that’s supposed to be doing The Harder They Come 2 — it’s either a prequel or a sequel — and we are supposed to score that movie. That would be crazy, it would be like “Soundbwoy Burial” like ten!