• Crate Diggers

    Hieroglyphics' Domino Reflects on His Legacy, Record Collection

    The Bay Area producer talks about his most lasting work and his formative listening experiences

    Like plenty of us, producer Domino of the Bay Area hip hop collective Hieroglyphics had his musical tastes influenced greatly by his parents.

    "My mom and my father were really into music from the beginning, so my earliest memories involve music," Domino tells us in the latest episode of Crate Diggers

    But because his dad, who played in the New York punk band Mink DeVille, was pursuing his own career during Domino's childhood, it was his mother's record collection that really set him on course. "My influences were what my mom was playing every day. A lot of Beatles and Stevie Wonder and Earth, Wind & Fire. Those are the three groups I listened to a whole lot."

    Eventually, though, he moved on from oft-plundered records by Ohio Players and the Four Tops to the more left-field stuff he gravitated to as a teenager. In the video above, Domino shows of weird little records like Elliot Blair Orchestra's Music From National Football League Films Vol. 1 (his copy was once owned by longtime Miami Dolphins owner Joe Robbie) and Henri Mancini's The Cop Show Themes.

    "I'm really into dramatic music and orchestration and it stems from being a kid and watching ESPN and NFL films," Domino says. "The influence of the orchestration and the drama that really got to me and has been an influence on me throughout my production career."

    But the most sought-after records in his private collection are his own: Rare instrumental pressings of early beats for classic Souls of Mischief tracks like "93 Til' Infinity," which were given to Hieroglyphics by the label Jive and are now nearly impossible to find.

    It's his work on 93 Til' Infinity, which turned 20 in March of last year, that makes Domino the most proud.

    "I felt like I just wanted to leave a legacy, you know what I mean? That was the most important thing to me. I never really got into it for fame or money or nothing like that," he says. "It was just like, 'I want to be able to have a legacy, to leave legacy.' [So] that I would be dead and gone and there would be something I left that mattered. And I feel like we accomplished that with that record."

    Catch up on previous episodes of Crate Diggers!

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