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400 faces: Billy Hume on rap, rock ‘n’ roll and making records
Billy Hume
Grammy winning producer Billy Hume has dedicated his life to perfecting, recording and playing music over the last 30 years. - photo by Ben Hendren

This article appears in the July issue of  400 Life.

In his basement recording studios in Forsyth County and Norcross, Grammy winning producer Billy Hume has worked with all of the bests. 

From Lil Jon and the Ying Yang Twins to the Infamous Stringdusters and Rehab, over the last 30 years Hume dedicated his life to perfecting, recording and playing music.

As a young musician in his early 20s, Hume started exploring his passion for recording music in his parent’s basement using a multi-track reel-to-reel recorder, slowly evolving his equipment as he learned more and his talents grew.

Hume says he quickly realized that even with his simple space and equipment, he could make quality recordings for his and his friend’s bands. 

“Back in the day, you normally had to go to a professional facility to record and I was one of the first people to start actually making records out of my basement,” Hume said. “And over the years, people heard my work and I kind of slowly transitioned into doing more producing.” 

In the mid ’90s, Hume’s work took a major turn when an acquaintance turned him on to the growing rap scene in the Atlanta area, introducing him to up-and-comers like Lil Jon and Bone Crusher. 

“I’m not really into rap music, I’m more of a rock guy, but I just liked the people and they were fun to work with,” Hume said. “We all just became friends and they kept hiring me because they liked my work.”

When many of these young rap artists began getting record deals in the early 2000s, suddenly work Hume had produced in his small basement studio was being played on radio channels all over and topping charts. 

Hume said that when Lil Jon came specifically to him for an album, booking his studio out for a month, he knew he had made it in the field. 

“From that day on I think I worked almost every day for like 10 years,” he said. “It was kind of around then that I kind of felt like, ‘Yeah, this might work.’”

Recently, Hume and the bluegrass rock band, the Infamous Stringdusters won a Grammy for their album, “Laws of Gravity.”


Billy Hume
Recently, Billy Hume and the bluegrass rock band, the Infamous Stringdusters won a Grammy for their album, “Laws of Gravity.” - photo by Ben Hendren