Kenny Beats’ 30 essential sources for inspiration

Without a doubt, Kenny Beats is one of the most creatively prolific producers out there today.

Whether it’s from looking at his seemingly endless, genre-spanning list of credits (which includes the likes of Denzel Curry, Ed Sheeran, Vince Staples, and Joji) or his more free-form collaborations on The Cave, it’s obvious that Kenny Beats’ appetite for creation is unmatched. So how has he managed to continuously stay inspired over the span of his career? Below, Kenny shares some of his favorite music, movies, activities, and more that spark his creativity and motivate him to get back in the studio.

Check out Kenny Beats’ videos on inspiration and fanning the creative flames today. New lessons dropping weekly.

Kenny’s must-listen tracks and albums

  • The Aura Will Prevail by George Duke
  • Joy as an Act of Resistance. by IDLES
  • Hell Hath No Fury by Clipse
  • Leak 04-13 (Bait Ones) by Jai Paul
  • “Doomsday” by MF DOOM

Kenny’s favorite movies and documentaries

  • Jiro Dreams of Sushi
  • Classic Albums: Steely Dan’s Aja
  • Zappa
  • Muscle Shoals
  • Truffle Hunters

Kenny’s favorite books and articles

  • The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
  • Everything You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald S. Passman
  • The Bruce Swedien Recording Method by Bruce Swedien
  • The Gucci Mane Guide to Greatness by Gucci Mane
  • Daniel Johnston by Daniel Johnston

Kenny’s favorite gear


Instruments and hardware

  • Otari MX5050 tape machine
  • Stager SR-3 microphone
  • Coles 4038 ribbon microphone
  • Yamaha CP-70
  • Strymon Deco effects pedal
  • Fender keys

Kenny’s favorite activities for unlocking creativity

  • Take a walk
  • Listen to new music
  • Watch interviews featuring your favorite producers / artists
  • Use sounds or techniques you’ve never used
  • Collaborate with new people

Are you already familiar with any of these sources of inspiration? Which ones do you plan to explore, and what are some sources of your own? Let us know in the comments below.

Learn more about staying inspired, producing, and advancing your career with Kenny Beats. New lessons dropping weekly.

October 14, 2021