Get To Know Flex Lennon: The Man Behind Some of Saba’s First Singles

Introduce yourself

What’s up everyone my name is Flex Lennon. I’m a producer from Chicago.

How was life growing up?

Life growing up was pretty cool and chill. I grew up on the northwest side, Jefferson Park area. Majority of my childhood was dedicated to sports. I was heavy into bowling as a kid, on various travel teams, but then as I got into High School I transitioned into Basketball and a bit of football.

When did you begin to witness you had creative talents?

I was more into sports, but always had this keen interest in music. I used to play this videogame called, MTV Music Generator as a kid. On this game I was able to remix songs and I would play it for hours. As I got older and now look back, I think that’s where my initial interest in music started.

When do you begin to start getting into producing and making beats?

I didn’t start making beats until after High School. I got into making beats after I heard Rick Ross’s – BMF record. This feeling came over me the first time I heard this record. Although I didn’t relate one bit of the lyrics, the song gave me empowerment. I began to develop a love for trap music and really tried to incorporate that into what I was doing.

At the time, I had a friend that randomly had Fruity Loops on his Moms ex-husband’s laptop and asked if I wanted it. I started to get real interested in Fruity Loops and started to treat it like a video game, I didn’t want to stop playing. I taught myself how to produce from Youtube tutorials.

What caused the name change from Born Ready Productions to Flex Lennon?

The name change came about because Born Ready Productions was meant to be a group. I got into producing because of BMF and Lex Luger who was apart of 808 Mafia made BMF. I wanted to start my own 808 Mafia with Born Ready Productions. I had another guy with me at the time, but we ended up going a different direction. I started to work with Saba and built this foreground and felt like I was stuck with my name, until one day I was on the plane to SXSW. On the plane, in my head I kept hearing the name Flex and it just stuck. Basically I created this alter ego on the way to SXSW. The name change allowed me to escape my insecurities and changed the way I approach music.

How were you able to meet Jason Valcarcel?

I was working with this guy Jay Vega, who was very influential on my production. Jay saw something in me before anybody else did, was introducing me to anybody who could, and really looked out for me. Jay was working with Jason at the time and he introduced me to him.

Was it through working with Jason, how you were able to get introduced to Saba?

Jacob Cuevas and Jason introduced me to Saba. One day Jacob brought a bunch of rappers over to my house to hear some of my beats and Saba was one of those guys.

Gurlfran was a beat I had made and was going to put on Soundcloud in a couple weeks. I wasn’t thinking anything of it. I ended up playing the beat for Saba and he was like send it to me. He ended up rapping on it, and right then and there I knew he was one of the most talented kids to rap.

Saba was working on the next project (Comfort Zone) and asked me to send beats. I made the beat (401k) and instantly knew I needed to send this one to Saba. I sent the beat to him and the next morning he sent me a rough version of the track. If he really loves something and wants to get it done, he will get it done fast.

How did it feel to be the producer behind two early singles (401k and gurlfran) of Saba?

It feels really good. To see him go to that next pinnacle and to even be apart of this past project (Bucketlist Project) was an awesome experience. It’s what you work for, to see those guys you work with take it to the next level. I’ve witnessed Saba’s success from the jump, I knew him before he had 1000 followers on twitter.

You’ve been able to work with other notable artists like Gypps and Ishdarr. How are you able to create these relationships with artists that aren’t from Chicago?

A lot of it comes through Private Stock. They offer a lot to me because they believe in what I’m doing. Sometimes an artist will reach out to Private Stock and ask to work with me, or sometimes I will reach out to Private Stock and tell them this is an artist I would like to work with and they get in touch with their management. It’s an e-mailing game sometimes.

As a producer, when you it comes to your production, and working with other artists, how do you go about creating the sound?

It really all depends on the artist and what they are looking for. At times I’ll get put in sessions with artists I’ve never met before, but I’ve heard their music, and automatically I’ll want to cater to their sound, but I’ll still to put my twist on it. I’ll notice an instrument or a certain sound they incorporate in their music and put a twist on it and allow them to discover other realms.

Who are some artists you want to work with in the near future?

I would love to work with Chance The Rapper and Dave East.

Over the years how much has music changed your life?

It’s just put me in a position to meet many awesome people. I’ve met so many people who saw something in me before I envisioned that and that means a lot when I sit back at 25 and look at retrospect. Now I’m in these positions to make these strides towards goals and it’s really cool to be apart of.

When it’s all said and done how would you like to be remembered?

I want to be remembered as a good man. I would love to be remembered for my music, but I want people to say Flex was a good, genuine, and honest dude.

Written By: Nicholas Rud