Pharrell Williams has inspired countless artists to greatness. From Jay Z to Miley Cyrus, Ed Sheeran to Snoop Dogg, the singer/producer’s boundless energy and creative spark has left a huge mark on the music industry. In fact, according to Tyler, the Creator, Pharrell is directly responsible for the formation of Tyler’s crew, Odd Future.
“WOW. ITS BEEN TEN YEARS. 3650 DAYS SINCE THE ALBUM THAT SHAPED ME WAS RELEASED,” Tyler wrote in an all-caps rave about Pharrell’s inspirational powers in an 800-word Facebook essay posted on Monday. “IN MY MIND BY PHARRELL WILLIAMS. I WAS 15 YEARS OLD, ATTENDING SUMMER SCHOOL AT HAWTHORNE HIGH, SPENDING MOST OF MY NIGHTS TRYING TO FIND ANY SNIPPETS OF THE ALBUM ON VARIOUS GERMAN SITES. I WAS WHAT YOU WOULD CALL A FANATIC, HOARDING ANY AND EVERY MAGAZINE I COULD FIND WITH THE NEPTUNES OR ANYTHING HAVING TO DO WITH THEM.”
Tyler wrote that he knew every single production by Pharrell and the Neptunes, in addition to every stitch of clothing from Williams’ BBC/Ice Cream fashion lines. In fact, he said he still has VHS tapes over every single appearance by Skateboard P from 2002-2005. “THIS ALBUM RANGES IN DIFFERENT STYLES AND SOUNDS, AND I BELIEVE THATS WHY I GRAVITATED TO IT SO MUCH,” he said of the producer’s 2006 debut solo effort, which featured the Gwen Stefani collabo “Can I Have it Like That,” “That Girl” with Snoop Dogg and Charlie Wilson, as well as tracks with Slim Thug, Jay Z, Pusha T, Nelly and Kanye West. “THE FACT THAT YOU DIDNT GET STUCK ON ONE SOUND AND LET A ‘COHESIVE’ WALL BLOCK YOUR CREATIVITY, MIGHT BE WHY I ALLOW MY ALBUMS TO RANGE IN STYLES NOW THAT I THINK ABOUT IT. ”
He’s not kidding when it comes to how deep his love is for In My Mind, either. Tyler went on to dissect specific basslines, outros and the hours he spent “lurking” Myspace pages and staring at photos of his muses while listening to “I Really Like Your Girl.”
“BEING 15, BLACK, NOT REALLY ‘INTERESTED’ IN WHAT THE MAJORITY OF MY PEERS WERE INTO, IT MADE ME FEEL SOME TYPE OF WAY,” he wrote. “I WAS AN OPTIMISTIC KID, ALWAYS DAYDREAMING AND SETTING GOALS SO I FELT YOU WERE DIRECTLY SPEAKING TO ME.” In the end, Tyler said Pharrell simply made him feel “safe,” which led to the creation of Odd Future that summer. “10 YEARS LATER, I AM NOW A MAN WHO HAS FOUND SUCCESS IN MANY THINGS, RUNNING BUSINESSES, A YOUNG ENTREPRENEUR, ALL BECAUSE I BELIEVED YOU WHEN YOU SAID I COULD.”
Read the whole essay here: