Musicians today are living and working in a time where it’s never been easier to record music; digital audio workstations (DAWs) like Ableton and Logic cost just a few hundred bucks, and simple microphones and interfaces can be gotten off the shelf at Guitar Center relatively cheaply.
But New York City-based rapper Prince Harvey took the concept of do-it-yourself recording to a whole new level when he recorded his upcoming album entirely within the confines of a Manhattan Apple store.
Harvey, 25, reportedly recorded all of the vocal and backing instrumental tracks for his forthcoming album PHATASS at the Apple Store in SoHo. The album name is an acronym: Prince Harvey At The Apple Store SoHo.
“It wasn’t my plan to record this at the Apple store,” Harvey told the Daily Beast. “First, my computer died. Then my external [hard drive] died. New York is expensive. I couldn’t just buy another laptop. I just thought, ‘I’m going to die before anyone knows I’m hot.'”
With scant other options, Harvey reportedly trekked to the Apple Store on the Lower East Side every weekday for four consecutive months to record his album, relying on relationships he formed with two store employees to make sure he didn’t get thrown out.
Harvey recorded his entire album using only his voice and a borrowed microphone, literally singing and humming into a display computer perched atop a desk in the store. The rapper was forced to get creative to save his files; Harvey told the Beast he would place files in the computer’s Trash folder, where they were shielded from memory sweeps done by store employees at the end of each day.
And despite the challenging circumstances surrounding the creation of the album, Harvey hasn’t lost his passion for music or his perspective.
“I don’t think I’m poor. Poor is a mentality,” Harvey told the Beast. “I mean, I can be broke – no money in my pocket – but I’ve never been poor. I’ve been rich my whole life. But I do want money. I want to tour. I want to perform for different people. Sh*t, I’ll go to Antarctica for the penguins if they’re feeling it.”
Harvey’s album is due out July 26. Below, check out “The New Black,” the second single off the album: