Grammy-Nominated 'Montero' Producer Roy Lenzo Dishes on Creativity and Working With Lil Nas X

If you've ever wanted to step into the mind of a hit producer, now is your chance.

Roy Lenzo is a producer best known for co-producing and co-writing Lil Nas X's Billboard Hot 100 #1 songs "Industry Baby" and "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)." His awesome productions have recently earned him five nominations at the 64th annual Grammy Awards, being held in January of next year, including nominations for Record, Album and Song of the Year. We were honored to get the chance to talk with Roy about his success, as well as the inspiration behind his work.

Sweety High: When did you decide that you wanted to become a producer?

Roy Lenzo: I was probably around 13 or 14 years old. My oldest cousin, Frankie, was a producer. He was making more John Mayer-sounding records, but I was definitely more influenced by the pop and hip-hop side of things. After growing up and watching him make his own music, I eventually started making my own.

 

SH: How did you come to meet Lil Nas X and begin your working relationship?

RL: I met Lil Nas because my friends and partners [Take A Daytrip] did work with him in L.A. They recorded the song "Panini," and then they all flew out to New York to our recording studio. That's when I first met him, and they ended up finishing Panini in that session. After a few days of him being in New York and us hanging out, we made "Rodeo."

 

SH: What inspires you the most creatively, whether it be musically or just in your everyday life?

RL: I feel like what inspires me in the studio is emotion and stories that are provided by the artists or whoever is in the room. A lot of times, artists only want to talk about their everyday life. When I'm by myself, I get inspired by interviews of some of my favorite producers.

 

SH: Are there any artists or producers that you look up to?

RL: Yeah, for sure. I'm definitely a big fan of The Weeknd. I feel like I've watched his come-up for a while and I've seen how he's transitioned into the artist that he's become today. Jon Bellion is another one, as well as Max Martin, Timbaland and Pharrell.


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SH: When creating a song, do you ever anticipate its success? Do you think "this song will definitely be a hit"?

RL: When I first came into the industry, I did think of success more. After a while, I transitioned into just thinking of the creative process of it all and just enjoying that more than the success. I feel like when you're creating music, that if you don't put your love into it then you will never get the success as a return.

 

SH: What's your favorite part of the production process?

RL: When it comes down to the final version of whatever the record is going to be, I think that's my favorite part. You're always having a battle with yourself and wondering if you made the right decision with everything. But in the end, people are only going to hear one version.

 

SH: Are there any artists you haven't gotten the chance to work with that you would want to produce for in the future?

RL: Yeah, I would love to work with Drake. He's one of my favorite rappers right now. Also, Kendrick Lamar and Doja Cat.

 

SH: Where do you see yourself in a year? What are your long-term goals?

RL: I feel like the direction I'm seeing myself in is just being a household name like Max Martin, where you know you're going to spend a week with him and make a single or work on a whole album. I see myself having my own artists that I'm developing or producing. I want to extend opportunities to other producers and build the music community even more.


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Love the production process? Click HERE to read our interview with JonTheProducer on his work with artists including Mau y Ricky.