This Friday, Baltimore hip-hop producer Don Trunk is releasing his first mixtape “Not A Beatmaker,” proving that he is exactly what his title suggests. Simply including instrumentals and hooks, Don is releasing the mixtape to prove he’s got what it takes to make it in the industry and to inspire artist collaboration starting with Baltimore, and reaching as far as the mixtape will travel.  Frustrated with just being hounded for beats, Don set out to create something different, focusing less on the individual and more on the music.

“The last thing I want to hear is a 15-year-old rapper disrespecting my creativity,” Don Trunk explained, “After all the songs I produced that never showcased my proper production credit, and seeing the text, ‘Email me some beats’ repeatedly, I decided to stand up for my artwork and all the producers who feel that way.”

The mixtape includes an eclectic compilation of genres, from infusing Nina Simone’s “Oh Baltimore” with dubstep, to the catchy “EBT: Everybody’s Thrifting,”  and cheeky “Backstage Passes,” Don Trunk is providing a base for a future hit.  Featuring local artists and Baltimotown,“Not A Beatmaker,” started with the Baltimore community to create an awesome hip-hop dialogue. By leaving verses out, Don hopes other artists will pick up his tracks and create a finished product.

“I hope it brings honest creativity and unity amongst all artists,” Don explains, “I think we are too selfish with our own careers that sometimes we forget to inspire our youth to work together and build up their communities.”

Refusing to be labeled as a “beatmaker,” Don Trunk premiered his tracks last Friday at the 2010 Bistro with Baltimotown, allowing fellow artists the opportunity to freestyle over his tracks, which is what he hopes to inspire once the entire mixtape comes out.

“Most producers won’t display their work unless the artist has already put their verses on it,” Don says, “I am breaking those laws, sharing with artists around the world, allowing them to benefit from my resources as a producer. I’m opening doors that normally would be closed for the artist. Most creators can’t afford the level of production they need to succeed. So I want to give them access the best instrumentals with hooks they can get from a Producer/Artist who understand they need to express themselves.”

Despite the intimacy of 2010, with each track the entire room pulsed with inspired excitement, highlighting the uexperimental atmosphere of both hip-hop and the mixtape itself. The accessibility of “Not A Beatmaker” creates a unique platform for artists everywhere.

“I hope artists network together & put out the best music they can so we can stop record labels & gatekeepers from blocking our dreams of creative freedom.”

Urging everyone at the party to post photos of the listening to instagram, the site blew up with hashtags #notabeatmaker #dontrunk #baltimotown. As word spreads quickly about Don Trunk’s release, the anticipation for what artists will do with his work is no doubt incalculable. But Don Trunk has his sights set high.

“I want to work with artist who have a purpose and vision for their music especially those in the mainstream realm,” Don explains. Citing the likes of Macklemore, Chuck Berry, Mc Lyte, and Andre 3000, it’s clear that Don Trunk definitely has more than beats up his sleeve.

To sample some of Don Trunk’s work, visit here, and be sure to check out his album when it drops 10/25/13!


Don Trunk, Photo by Charlie Peacher

Don Trunk, Photo by Charlie Peacher

Don Trunk