#312: Leslie Brathwaite
This week on A Waste of Time with ItsTheReal, we call down to Atlanta to connect back with the premier mix engineer in the business, the multi Grammy Award-winning Leslie Brathwaite! Leslie, who would go on to be the trusted man behind the boards for Beyoncé, Pharrell, Jay-Z, Outkast, TLC, Madonna, Lil Uzi Vert, Jack Harlow, Rick Ross, Jeezy, Cash Money, Monica, and so many more talks about growing up in the U.S. Virgin Islands, falling in love with music by deep-diving into his father's record collection, the three months his mother wouldn't speak to him because he was he was focused on studying music in college, the guidance counselor who led him to Full Sail University in Orlando, Florida, the balance he found between technical prowess and pure feeling, what trial and error meant to his early career, how he scored an internship at Dallas Austin's elusive studio, the long-lasting friendship he's had with T-Boz of TLC, what their recording sessions were like, how Creep was written over a 30-minute car ride to dinner, how his time working with Dallas came to an end and allowed for new collaborations, and where he was when he got the call that Left Eye had passed away. Leslie discusses his thoughts on superstar auras, the one voice that he could listen to - a cappella or with instrumentation - for ever and ever, his shocking choice of whose voice is criminally underrated, the mixes that caused Andre 3000 and Beyoncé to stop in their tracks in satisfaction, the one mix that bothers Leslie to this day, and the one mix that he's completely pleased with. And most importantly, we discuss race, privilege in the music business, having to work twice as hard to get half the reward, how important it is to speak your truth, how Leslie explained to his children why people harbor hate, how he feels as a Black man in America in the middle of 2020, and much more.