More Bounce to the Ounce
Chris Christopherson, AKA Weighn Beats, has produced, mixed and mastered hundreds of songs for local acts but, outside of Boise hip-hop circles, he hasn’t gotten a lot of recognition.
“Sometimes the producer isn’t the one who’s in the front and gets all the shine, and I used to work with a lot of artists,” said Christopherson. “Things are different now that I’m older with a kid and I don’t have time to meet up with rappers five times a week.”
Christopherson has been making beats since 2005, has produced 17 albums available on Bandcamp and Spotify, and performed at Treefort multiple times. His releases have a lot of range, from collaborations with different crews to LPs that are only beats, and space themed albums.
He started the Illumneye Crew, worked with local artists Andy O, group Oso Negro, Mo Digs and many more. He made an album called Space Cadet using vinyl recordings of the moon landing mixed with trippy space beats and his most recent album Hip-Hopumentary 2 came out last year. He’s currently working on the next Hip-Hopumentary album, as well as several side projects. Both are slated for release later in 2020.
Christopherson began making music while at the University of Idaho. He bought a computer and messed around with the Ableton program before he got into analog.
At first he started collecting just for samples but then, he said, he became obsessed. He likes to listen to a lot of Jazz; albums produced by Creed Taylor under his label CTI Records. Taylor worked with influential artists like Freddy Hubbard, George Benson and Nina Simone.
“I love all the off the wall jazz records from the ‘60s,” said Christopherson. “All that stuff inspires me and I just started digging deeper and deeper into music. Now with the internet it can get crazy.”
He sucked all of that music in like a sponge, cutting ear worm tracks, mixing sounds and fitting it together like a puzzle. The result is something new.
“I say I get the meat and potatoes in first, like the basic parts, and then I go and put the sugar on top to finish it,” he said. “I put together stuff I like and make it into a song. I work slower now but still get it out.”