Parker Ighile On His Forthcoming Artist Album: ‘I’ve Taken The Time To Perfect It’
Parker Ighile is a relaxed character. He won’t be rushed. The British-Nigerian producer, songwriter and protégé of Nicki Minaj has been honing his first extended artist release, and he's been at it for some time now. It’ll come when it’s ready.
“I’m still an active producer and I’ve been focusing on building a foundation for my sound by working with other artists,” he tells Billboard. “I’m an extremely patient person and I believe that when the listeners hear the body of work they will understand why I’ve taken the time to perfect it.”
Ighile’s mixtape, which was announced last year with a working title of “Young, Dumb and 21,” doesn’t yet have a release date. Though he's recently offered another taste from that growing body of work with a dreamy new track, “This is America,” a collaboration with rapper-of-the-moment G-Eazy.
That collab “happened naturally,” he explains. “Both our teams are connected on many levels and about 18 months ago I was shown one of G’s videos and since then I’ve been a big fan of his craft and artistry. When I made the record I wanted somebody who was the perfect representation of what I like to call the ‘urban renaissance’. I knew G would kill it and he did.”
Ighile, who has relocated from the U.K. to the U.S., describes his latest track as “a reality record.” There's no shortage of inspiration, he explains. “All of my songs are based on real life occurrences and in that sense, yes, you can expect many more songs like that on my album. In terms of the genre, mood and vibe…my creative process is somewhat ‘bespoke’. I try my very best not to mimic myself.”
Ighile is the first signing to Minaj’s recording label, Pink Friday Records. But his reputation was built from behind the desk. He got his first big break back in October 2009 when, as an 18-year-old, his co-production of “Oopsy Daisy” for Chipmunk (now known as Chip) reached No. 1 on the Official U.K. Singles Chart. He’s worked on an array of tracks, including “What Now" by Rihanna and "Do it like a Dude" for Jessie J, and teamed with the likes of Angel and, naturally, Minaj.
The transition from the mixing desk to the mic has been “an interesting one,” he quips. “To be honest, I didn’t expect my journey to take such a turn. I’ve been rapping and singing as far back as I can remember but I enjoyed my music and I wasn’t concerned if people ever heard it. I was honestly happy helping other artists express themselves. Luckily my manager Efe (Ogbeni) and my darling Nicki (Minaj) heard some of the songs and the rest was history. The team I’ve got over here are my backbone and I’ve gotta thank them for everything that’s happening.”