Erick Sermon Is Executive Producing Redman’s “Muddy Waters Too” & Says It Will Be Classic (Audio)
Approaching 30 years since EPMD released Strictly Business, Erick Sermon is in the midst of a creative renaissance. Last month, the Green-Eyed Bandit secured more than $60,000 of crowd-funding for his upcoming ninth solo album (now titled Vernia). As E-Double gets underway on that release promised to feature Method Man, Ghostface Killah, AZ, and more, Keith Murray recently announced that he and Sermon are at work on The Most Beautifullest Thing In This World Part 2. Meanwhile, EPMD say they are recording a Roc Nation concept album, Dynamic Duos: Big Business, featuring Black Star, Mobb Deep, Salt-n-Pepa, M.O.P., Capone-N-Noreaga, and more. It is a busy season in Long Island’s Def Squad Studios.
Appearing on the latest episode (#233) of The Cipher Show, Sermon devotes some time to promoting another album entirely. Def Squad’s founder discusses Redman’s upcoming Muddy Waters Too, a sequel to his gold-certified 1996 Def Jam LP, for which Erick executive produced and provided many sounds. Ahead of the 38:00 mark, Sermon tells host Shawn Setaro, “To me, Muddy Waters Too will be classic Redman, because it will be done by me. For the last three or [more Redman] LPs, it wasn’t done by me. There’s nothing wrong with that; people stay apart. [Dr.] Dre only did one [full album] on Snoop [Dogg]. Sometimes you get to a point where…I happened to do five [Redman] albums. People don’t work that long. I don’t think Missy [Elliott] and Timbaland [did that]. They had broke [away] too before they came back. For you to do five albums with somebody in your crew, it doesn’t happen all the time.” Released between 1992 and 2001, those five albums contain some of Red’s most beloved work, including the E-produced “Whateva Man.”
Describing living in “a great time for Hip-Hop,” Sermon also confirms that he is presently at work on Method Man’s Crystal Meth album. That will be the Wu-Tang Clan member’s first solo album since 2006.
For Muddy Waters Too, Redman previously stated that the LP involves legal sampling. He specifically confirmed spending $10,000 on a James Brown sample, and $9,000 for another. Beginning with 2007’s Red Gone Wild, Sermon’s production involvement decreased from the first five releases. 2010’s Reggie and 2015’s Mudface lacked E-Double entirely.
In the interview, Sermon reveals that EPMD’s “Head Banger” (an important song to Redman and K-Solo’s careers) was created for Ice Cube. Erick missed the deadline to submit, presumably for Death Certificate, and kept it for EPMD. He recalls writing the group’s “Jane” at 12 years old. During the hour-plus discussion, E also gets into how renowned comic book artist Bill Sienkiewicz came up with the cover concept for Business As Usual.
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Additional Reporting by Jordan Commandeur.