MeLo-X

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MeLo-X
Birth nameSean Rhoden[1]
Born1985[1]
Genres
Occupation(s)
Associated acts

Sean Rhoden, known professionally MeLo-X, is an American disc jockey and record producer. MeLo-X co-wrote two songs for Beyoncé's Lemonade album in 2014: "Hold-Up" and "Sorry".

MeLo-X is one half of the electro/dancehall/reggae duo Electric Punanny, along with Jasmine Solano. They have toured internationally, performing deejay sets at festivals such as Glastonbury, Afropunk and SXSW.

Early life[edit]

MeLo-X was born to Jamaican parents in the East Flatbush neighborhood of the New York City borough of Brooklyn.[2][3]

Career[edit]

In 2009, MeLo-X toured with Theophilus London, serving as deejay. On the side, he remixed songs from other artists, without permission.[1]

In 2014, MeLo-X remixed five songs from Beyoncé's album Beyoncé, the project titled Yoncé-X, which MeLo-X posted to various websites such as SoundCloud and YouTube. Beyoncé's label kept having the remix album removed from each new hosting site for copyright violations,[4] but after seeing the uploaded video for "Drunk in Lust," MeLo-X's unauthorized remix of "Drunk in Love,"[5] Beyoncé invited him to make music for the On the Run Tour, a co-headlining tour by Jay-Z and Beyoncé. MeLo-X relates: "They already had the story and the outline for the tour. The whole story is like you're watching a film and it's narrated by the music that they created... We'd sit and talk about the sounds. Then I'd go and create something. It was a mix of my ideas, with Beyoncé and Jay Z. I'd try to complement them. I'd try to find a meeting point of what I do and what they wanted." MeLo-X said that, for a climactic car-chase scene, he took Kanye West's song "Hell of a Life", changing and chopping it in the trap EDM style, making it into a two-minute piece to fit the concert visuals.[5]

After this, MeLo-X collaborated with Beyoncé and Jay-Z in writing two songs for Beyoncé's Lemonade album: "Hold-Up" and "Sorry".[6] "Hold Up" was certified Gold in the U.S. and Australia, and "Sorry" was certified Platinum in the U.S. MeLo-X said he encountered the song "Hold Up" after much of it had been composed by Father John Misty and MNEK. MeLo-X wrote some of the song's lyrics, and provided background vocals, saying, "I love how my vocals were used because it feels like it's a sample under her voice during the chorus."[7] The song "Sorry" was co-written and co-produced by MeLo-X and Wynter Gordon. As well, MeLo-X scored the music for Beyoncé's Lemonade visual album.[6]

MeLo-X also created music and sounds for Beyoncé's The Formation World Tour.[6] For instance, when a mechanical lift at center stage rises upward, a sound that MeLo-X designed is played to represent the movement.[4]

MeLo-X released an EP titled Curate in October 2015. The EP took the form of a software application within which the listener can move a pointer to change the beat and the reverb.[1] MeLo-X calls the octahedron-shaped pointer the "infinity stone."[4] Songs on the EP feature performances by Little Simz, Raury, and Kilo Kish.[6] The next year, PartyNextDoor hired MeLo-X to bring the same visual style to his Summer's Over Tour.[4]

Electric Punanny[edit]

In 2007, MeLo-X met Jasmine Solano at the Sway nightclub in New York City. They collaborated in 2008 to create a monthly deejay party under the name Electric Punanny. The music is a fusion of electro-funk, dancehall and reggae.[8] Early shows were at the 205 Club, but the show gained a larger following at the Sway Lounge. The duo began to tour internationally and to release music together.[9] In 2013, they performed in France, Japan and Australia, including a set for the Island Vibe Festival on Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah). Personal electronics maker House of Marley sponsored a tour of North America in early 2014, including a performance at the "Do Over Party" in Palm Springs after the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.[10] In June 2014, Electric Punanny played the Glastonbury Festival, at the Blues Stage in the Silver Hayes area.[11][12] They played at the Afropunk Festival in Brooklyn in August 2014.[13] The group's techno-dancehall mashup "Rosa Caleta" was their first release together in October 2014, the song named after a Jamaican restaurant in Berlin.[14][15] After performing in China, Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore, the duo played SXSW in March 2015.[16] In 2017, Electric Punanny released the song "Tiger Eye" featuring Donae'o.[8] This was followed by "Gymnastics On Fire", a summer jam featuring the Afro-R&B collective The.Wav,[17] released on the EPINTL label by Beatport.[18]

Musical style and influences[edit]

MeLo-X brings together in his music many different musical genres, especially dancehall and reggae from his family's Jamaican heritage. His deejay sets often combine tropical grooves with various hip hop and electronic dance beats. MeLo-X cites Big Pun, the Hot Boys, and rapper DMX along with his producer Swizz Beatz as inspirations for his own music career.[19]

Photography[edit]

After taking a trip to Equatorial Guinea and South Africa, MeLo-X had a showing of his photography in 2014 at the Sean Kelly Gallery in New York.[1][4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Anderson, Stacey (December 2, 2015). "MeLo-X, the D.J. Behind Beyoncé's Remixes and Video Clips". The New York Times.
  2. ^ Smith, Bria (January 12, 2016). "Premiere: Discover MeLo-X's Blissed-Out Banger 'The Cure'". Milk.xyz. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  3. ^ Staff (March 21, 2013). "Throwback Thursdays: MeLo-X on Tanto Metro & Devonte's 'Everyone Falls in Love'". LargeUp. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d e Witte, Rae (December 9, 2016). "Meet curator, app developer and Beyoncé collaborator MeLo-X". Dazed. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  5. ^ a b Ramirez, Erika (September 20, 2014). "Producer MeLo-X Gives Inside Look at Beyonce & Jay Z's On the Run Tour". Billboard.
  6. ^ a b c d Strauss, Matthew (April 25, 2016). "Beyoncé's Lemonade Collaborator MeLo-X Gives First Interview on Making of the Album". Pitchfork. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  7. ^ Peisner, David (April 28, 2016). "Making 'Lemonade': Inside Beyonce's Collaborative Masterpiece". Rolling Stone.
  8. ^ a b DJ Stylus (August 4, 2017). "Song of the Day: Electric Punanny feat. Donae'o". DJ D-Mac & Associates. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  9. ^ Francois, Paul (February 9, 2017). "Inner Circle: Jasmine Solano". CLLCTV.US. Boston. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  10. ^ Hampton, Tiy (May 2, 2014). "Get Electric with Electric Punanny". The Source. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  11. ^ "Glastonbury Festival Recap". Electric Punanny. July 1, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  12. ^ Sedghi, Ami (June 4, 2014). "Glastonbury festival 2014: full list of acts by stage and start time". The Guardian.
  13. ^ "Afropunk Festival 2014". Electric Punanny. August 12, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  14. ^ Bryan, Beverly (August 10, 2015). "Why Can't I Be You: Jasmine Solano". Rookie.
  15. ^ Sargent, Antwaun (October 13, 2014). "Premiere: Electric Punanny Reimagines Dancehall with Their Ode to Berlin, 'Rosa Caleta'". Noisey. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  16. ^ "SXSW 2015". Electric Punanny. March 13, 2015. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  17. ^ Starling, Larkin (July 28, 2017). "Slow Whine For The Rest Of The Summer To Electric Punanny's "Gymnastics On Fire" Featuring The.Wav". The Fader. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  18. ^ "Gymnastics on Fire (feat. The.Wav)". Beatport. 2018. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  19. ^ Aku, Timmhotep (August 13, 2015). "The Renaissance Man: Melo-X on 'Curate,' Working with Beyoncé, and Multimedia Artistry". NPR. Retrieved February 18, 2018.

External links[edit]