Few artists can straddle hip-hop and dance music without alienating either fan base, but Yogi, an anonymous producer signed to Dr. Dre‘s Aftermath and Skrillex’s OWSLA labels, could be the great connector. He caught the eyes of Dre’s camp when he produced “Traktor” for rapper Wretch 32 in 2011, but his sound is beginning to catch mainstream attention. Over the past month, his uproarious single “Burial,” which features rapper Pusha T, has scored two of the biggest syncs of the year: the trailers for the Entourage movie and HBO’s macho new series, Ballers (below).
The song was first released a year ago but took a while to gain momentum. When it finally did, it was largely thanks to co-signs from Skrillex, Crookers and Moody Good, whose remixes were ultimately compiled on an EP, titled Burial, that was released on OWSLA in July.
During a recent visit to his studio in Santa Monica, Calif., the London-born producer told Billboard that he hopes the recent storm of sync deals, which include a UFC documentary and an Arby’s commercial, would help prolong the song’s shelflife. He, Pusha T and Skrillex will film a music video next month – “it’ll be big” he says – before moving on to new material.
For years, securing a moment on HBO’s Entourage program was one of the most sought-after syncs in the business (Scott Vener was the show’s music supervisor since its launch in 2004). It could be argued that the film’s soundtrack, which is also Vener, is an even bigger opportunity.
“The music was always so dope in the show,” Yogi says. “I remember an ending scene where they played Skream’s La Roux remix, people wouldn’t have heard it at that point… it turned into a moment. Scott picks music that enhances what’s happening on the screen.”
Watch the trailer for Entourage below. “Burial” chimes in at 0:43.