Detroit producer Apollo Brown has made a name for himself as one of Hip-Hop’s most legendary new producers; while maintaining a golden era sound. His production credits are a who’s who of Hip-Hop greats from Danny Brown, Skyzoo to Ghostface Killah, Ras Kass to Westside Gunn. Even Chance The Rapper used a pair of Apollo beats on his debut mixtapes. Known for bringing the best out of musicians, Apollo has a knack for making timeless classics.
Brooklyn’s Joell Ortiz started on none other than Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label and built a huge buzz in the industry. He’s worked with legends like Just Blaze among others. He then signed to Shady Records as ¼ of the supergroup Slaughterhouse. He’s worked with Hip-Hop titans Eminem, Busta Rhymes, Jadakiss, Akon, and Big Daddy Kane.
Now the pair of Hip-hop luminaries have their first collaborative album on Mello Music Group—and it’s nothing short of a masterpiece: ‘Mona Lisa‘. Today, they premiered the album announcement and single–“Decisions”–with Billboard.
“‘Decisions’ is a song I wrote that talks about and details an actual period in my life. It was during this time that I was consumed by the streets, but fascinated with the idea of being a rapper” Joell Ortiz commented to Billboard. “I was dealing with certainty and uncertainty. I had one foot in the booth and one foot on the corner. The corner fed my family, but the booth fed my soul. As you all know, I ended up leaving the hustle alone and pursuing a music career. It all worked out. Thank God! But this song best describes exactly how I felt during that time and shows you just how much of a battle it actually was to come to what I know now as the right decision.”
“This album IS art overdue. In my ears, this is what the painting ‘Mona Lisa’ sounds like” Apollo Brown described to Billboard. “The music is straightforward. That’s all I ask for when I’m the listener, so that’s all I give when I’m the creator. No bullshit. None. I provided the canvas, and Joell provided the honest brushstrokes. This album is a relatable body of work that everyone can listen to and appreciate. It’s growth within a gold frame. Open your ears and enjoy.”
Apollo Brown & Joell Ortiz’s ‘Mona Lisa‘ will be released on 10.26.2018 courtesy of Mello Music Group. You can pre-order and favorite now on your favorite digital retailers & streaming services.
‘Mona Lisa‘ Tracklisting:
- My Block
- Cocaine Fingerprints
- Grace Of God featuring DJ Los
- That Place
- Timberlan’d Up featuring Royce Da 5’9″
- Come Back Home
- Mona Lisa