Computer programming can't be nearly as exciting as running your own label, building dreary beats for Illogic or cutting a record with crate-digger extraordinaire RJD2. Ohio MC, producer and Weightless Records label head Blueprint knew this and bailed on his cubicle job a while back to get himself something more aligned with his steadfast DIY code of ethics.

"A year before I quit, I was going to quit anyway, because I wasn't happy," he says. "So I kept working but I was just saving a lot of money, and I stopped caring about Corporate America, and then I had the opportunity to tour. It was a difficult decision, but I had to do it. It was the right thing to do."

Now that Blueprint's full-time gig has shifted from jockeying a computer to looping Who organ riffs for beats, ditching the office proved a safe bet. Take the murky, psychedelic canvas he crafted for Illogic's Celestial Clockwork album, or the reverb-heavy cuts that followed on Blueprint's mostly instrumental Chamber Music – both 2004 Weightless releases, both engineered at his own console.

"The more control you have over something, the less you'll let other influences change how you do that," he says. "If I don't have anybody to answer to, then basically I'm going to create all the records I want to create. I think that once you start getting more hands in that, it's going to affect the process."

For this year's 1988, 'Print borrowed a couple of things that he liked about breakdancing and Biz Markie's first record. He delivers a slick tribute to an older school on the album, comically ousting an ex on the bluesy "Tramp" before deconstructing the perils of his indie ideology on "Liberated." Though his beats are now a little sunnier, his flow is still manic and complaint-ridden, and, perhaps most importantly, he's still got the final say.

"If you're really creating art, then you can do it in your bedroom or in your basement and not give a shit about what anybody says," he offers by way of advice to out-of-the-mainstream musicians. "You can enjoy it and always get satisfaction out of that, but if you're worried about what everybody thinks, then it's going to be easy to be taken under by the pressure."

with P.O.S., Atmosphere

Saturday, Oct. 22
The Social Pavilion music@orlandoweekly.com

More by Dominic Umile


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