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Envelope Music Producers Roundtable: Hitmakers discuss magic behind frequent collaborations

February 8, 2011 | 11:38 am

Behind most every successful artist is a producer (or team) responsible for helping the artist construct that certain cohesive sound that fans come to associate with him or her.

In hip-hop, Eminem plays quite nicely with Dr. Dre; Aaliyah took the Mary J. Blige/Diddy brand of R&B/hip-hop hybrid productions to another level with the aid of Timbaland and Missy productions; Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis shaped a young Janet Jackson; Rodney Jerkins helped Brandy trademark a sound that shaped late-'90s R&B; and Max Martin and Dr. Luke anchored quite the pop coup d'état with Katy Perry, Avril Lavigne, Britney Spears, Kelly Clarkson and Ke$ha.

That sort of indelible pairing is something that two-thirds of our panel knows a thing or two about. Ari Levine of the production trio the Smeezingtons made his mark by helping Bruno Mars (he too is a part of the Smeezingtons) sniff out a sound that led to four nominations, including record of the year for both B.o.B.'s “Nothin' on You” and Cee Lo Green's “[Forget] You.”

Nadir Khayat, the Moroccan-born producer known as RedOne, is best known for his work with frequent collaborator and muse Lady Gaga.

In the clip above, watch the group discuss Grammy-nominated magic.

Check back daily until the Grammy Awards on Feb. 13 to see more of this conversation on pop music.

Related:

Check out all the Envelope Music Producers Roundtable videos here

— Gerrick D. Kennedy

 

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