The Mac Miller beat that started with Kendrick Lamar
(Credit: Alamy)

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The Mac Miller beat that started with Kendrick Lamar

Producer, session instrumentalist and singer Steve Lacy is a highly versatile musician who has worked with a range of artists across several genres. From Solange to Kali Uchis, Kendrick Lamar and Isaiah Rashad, the beatmaker has collaborated with everyone, including Mac Miller.  

In 2017, Lacy was working intensely on Kendrick Lamar’s fourth album DAMN. The pair worked together extensively, and Lacy presented the Compton native with several beats. Lamar eventually chose one, which later became ‘PRIDE’. The instrumental was made on his iPhone 6. 

However, one of the beats that Steve Lacy created during a Kendrick Lamar DAMN session was passed on to the late Pittsburgh rhymer Mac Miller for his 2018 album, Swimming

During a sit-down conversation with music journalist Craig Jenkins to speak about his solo project Gemini Rights, Lacy revealed that the creation of the beat for Mac Miller’s ‘Jet Fuel’ instrumental began during a session with DJ Dahi. 

Opening up about the track, Lacy explained, “That beat actually came from a Kendrick Lamar session. Dahi and I, when we were working on DAMN, the first day I came through to work on that record, we just made beats.”

He continued, “[Dahi’s] so organised. He has all these different drum loops. He had that loop, and I did that groove, but Dot didn’t use it. Dahi just collects stuff. I guess Malcolm was working on his record, and he liked the beat that became ‘Jet Fuel.'”

Lacy revealed that Mac Miller (real name Malcolm McCormick) was one of the only artists who embraced him and his music early in his career. Explaining the importance of Miller in his rise, Lacy disclosed, “Mac was one of the first big people to fuck with me. He was just a rad spirit bro. We spent a lot of time together. He wanted to make music, and he liked some of my first ideas. I was, like, ‘Damn, that’s crazy!’ I was still going to school and shit at that time.”

Lacy continued, “He was huge to a lot of my peers, but I didn’t say anything. There’s a song on The Lo-Fis called ‘Daze.’ I have a version with him on it. He loved my production, and he’d always send me drums, and we’d work together.”

Unfortunately, Miller dealt with substance abuse and fame-induced depression. He even admitted that as a form of stress management, he frequently consumed promethazine (sleeping pills) and enjoyed a tipple of lean. As such,  in 2018, Miller tragically died from an overdose of fentanyl, cocaine, and alcohol.

You can listen to the Steve Lacy-produced ‘Jet Fuel’ in the video below.