Steve Lacy is an 18-year-old record producer who's worked with the likes of Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole, and even netted himself a Grammy nod for producing the 2015 album Ego Death, by The Internet. A track he wrote and recorded on his iPhone even made it onto Kendrick Lamar's DAMN.
Lacy doesn't come up with his demos in a completely conventional way, reports Wired. At least, it's not conventional yet. He uses his iPhone and GarageBand to lay down tracks and come up with beats. The song he played for Kendrick Lamar ("Wasn't There") was completely recorded on his iPhone, including the vocals, because the equipment he was using at the time "kept screwing up".
Lacy uses an iRig, which he can connect directly to microphones and instruments in order to lay tracks down into GarageBand. Funnily enough, he's run into an issue with the iPhone 7's lack of a headphone jack, according to Wired, and has had to use an older, cracked iPhone.
Lacy's burgeoning fame in the hip-hop community and his recording method of choice brings about an interesting debate: Does a recording sound great because of the heart and soul that went into it or because of the tools that were used to produce it?
[Lacy] wants to remind people that the performance, the song, the feeling matter more than the gear you use to record it. (David Pierce, Wired)
To me, there isn't much of a debate. This is just a kid who's been using what's at his disposal for a while now, and he's found that it's worked for him, so why not keep on with it?
What do you think?