Passion is nothing without an ultimate vision. Too often, there’s a disconnect between what an artist feels and what they allow their talents to create, possibly because they haven’t figured out how, but more so because they’ve confined themselves in their own platform. With hip-hop today, the landscape is littered with broken bottles, g-strings and drugs, evidence of a good time but not much else. From quiet corners across the culture, however, that attitude is slowing changing; it’s saying that violence, bitches and OD’ing aren’t good enough anymore and balance will be a trending hash-tag. To say the movement needs a voice is obvious, but that also does it’s very essence a disservice - change, in this case, needs MANY voices. There and back again through the blunt smoke and bottles, Vancouver producer Goodwill knows there’s more to be said, and he’s prepared to use his voice for his generation - to be one of many.
“There’s something pure about a great hip-hop song,” he says. “In 2011, though, hip-hop is really just turning out disposable music and ‘producing a song’ isn’t where it’s at. Erykah Badu is one of my favorite artists because she’s able to capture a mood - a feeling - in every song. I’m working to capture what I see that in my neighborhood, in my city, wherever I’m at. I’m trying to get at the big picture with my music, to do more than just make and sell beats out of a one-bedroom apartment. I want a team of focused people to create a true North West movement and bring what we see to the world. A lot of times people don’t get it because it really is different. But they eventually got it when Cobain talked about it, so I’m confident 2011 will be a big year.”
Now splitting time between Vancouver, WA and Portland, OR, Goodwill grew up around music. He got into beatmaking in early 2000 listening to artists like Big L, E-40, Gangstarr, Wu Tang and 90’s R&B, but the more he listened, the more his ear was drawn to how the music was made and the different production techniques being used. As a result, Pete Rock, DJ Premier, RZA, Battlecat and J Dilla became instant favorites and helped inspire the soulful, well-worn sound that’s become a trademark of Goodwill’s production. He got serious behind the boards in 2007 and quickly found success, working with emcees across the country via his most effective and efficient plug-in: the Internet. Roughly four years later, Goodwill has welcomed other talented producers from the region into his cipher, as well as other emcees, bloggers, promoters, designers and photographers, all moving forward with a central purpose - to give life to the North West sound.
In mid-2010, Goodwill made a stellar showing at the Seattle leg of the B.L.A.P. Showcase, sponsored by indie producer extraordinaire Illmind, which helped foster a relationship with North West standout emcee Luck-One. Oregonian Newspaper writer Robert Ham complimented Will’s production on their track "Shine So Bright,” calling the “devilishly” slow, chopped-up bass line from the Eagles' "One of These Nights" the reason Luck-One played an incredible “tug of war with his abilities as an MC and the struggles of trying to become successful." Luck-One, along with North West standouts Cool Nutz, The Kid Espi, Amsterdam, Middle and other local artists like Sole Pro and Calmplex, have established Will’s music in the region, highlighting both it’s grittiness and underlying soul. Often laced with dusty samples and smooth drums, Goodwill has also taken up piano and bass guitar to compliment his production work, further enhancing the “life before this” feeling his production generates. Along with the aforementioned emcees, full projects with Sole Pro and Jersey emcee John Public are due out later in 2011. You can hear more of Goodwill’s recent work at soundcloud.com/Goodwill85 or contact him via Twitter (Goodwill85) or Facebook (WiltSancho).