The song, which interpolates the Isley Brothers’ hit “Who’s That Lady?” was produced by Rahki, who says it’s just a taste of things to come. He also explained that it was a collaborative effort throughout.
“Every time Kendrick worked on the record, every time he had Ali mix it, he called me [to] come through,” the 31-year-old producer told MTV News. “He’s that type of artist where he wants the producer to be a part of the record, which to me is the most important thing in the world. That’s why the music comes out so good with Kendrick — he’s all about the music.”
Rahki, who produced the gkmc bonus track “Black Boy Fly,” says he first started sending K. Dot beats for the new project right after the debut dropped. Once Dot came off tour this summer, they got in the studio together — though they only finished “i” about a week before it dropped.
“We started really building. We got in. We talked about life. I was just with him like every day all summer. He told me the idea of what he was looking for for the album, and so we just started building ideas that way. So everything we did for ‘i’ was built solely based off of us [conversing]. I didn’t have those records or that beat done beforehand.”
Instead, it was actually the rapper’s idea to use “Who’s That Lady?” — which actually isn’t sampled on the song, but is in fact replayed by live musicians.
“We wanted it to sound exactly like the record,” the Minnesota native revealed, adding that Kendrick flew Rahki’s musicians of choice in from out of state to create the sound he was looking for. “The musicians that I chose to play on this record, I felt like they would be able to knock it down and give it that feel that Kendrick wanted, and they did an exceptional job…Everything you’re hearing is a replay; nothing is sampled to the actual master.”
Rahki says he’s worked with the Compton native on more records than just “i,” and has high praise for the music that’s being created.
“What Kendrick is doing, and what he’s about to do — he’s an artist, he has a vision in mind. There’s nothing like that record on radio right now.”
“He’s a genius,” he added. “What he’s doing is really gonna change up a lot. The album is incredible.”