You can make a damn good argument for Rick Rubin being the most important figure in popular music. And yet, despite his vast, sweeping influence on rap, rock and plenty of genres in-between, his old school, show-don’t-tell mystique makes him a tough character to really understand. You can look at the back of Trackstar’s mixtape dedicated to the music guru’s catalog if you want to understand the vast body of work, but connecting with Rubin as a person? Harder to do.
That’s where Zane Lowe and the fine folks at BBC Radio 1 come in. In one sublime hour dripping with factoids and anecdotes fit for any music fan, Lowe and Rubin talk about the double-R’s life and career (including working with Kanye, which we talked about last week), allowing for plenty of Rick’s heady, chill personality to shine through. As if “grab a beer and a joint with Rick Rubin” wasn’t already near the top of my probably won’t-ever-happen-but-don’t-give-up-yet-bud bucket list, this interview cements it.
The entire interview is one hour, but when you consider how much knowledge and how many stories are being held behind Rick’s beard and blue eyes, that’s an investment that should lead to some promising returns. Or at least a decent story for the next time you go out on the town. Either/or.