D.A. Doman talks making hit records with Tyga and Offset, and life in Chicago

CJ Carter

 // Jul 23, 2019

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any other agency, organization, employer or company.

There's no question that you're familiar with the "D.A. Got That Dope" beat tag. With good reason, the unforgettable phrase is married to some of your favorite songs. We caught up with D.A. at his recording studio in Hollywood, California to talk about his success, Chicago, hip hop, Harold's Chicken, and of course, how he got that dope.

Chicago native and budding super producer D.A. Doman, known for his signature moniker, produced two of the biggest hip hop records of 2018. Producing Tyga's "Taste" record featuring Offset, which was a blockbuster that took off like a rocket and dominated the airwaves, and the Billboard charts; made it one of the biggest and most successful records last year. In addition, the track quickly became Tyga's highest charting record in more than three years, and auspiciously secured his sixth Billboard Top 10 career hit and presently boasts almost 651 million plays on Spotify.

Then there's "ZEZE." "ZEZE" was a massive hit, courtesy of Kodak Black featuring Travis Scott with an assist from Offset. Upon its release, the "D.A. Got That Dope" produced record quickly became the most-streamed song in the country, earning over 47 million streams in a week. The single also debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart and peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart, spawning a remixed freestyle courtesy of Tyga and Swae Lee. Since producing these massive hits, D.A has been privy to working with some of the biggest names in music and along with securing two American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) Awards, is rapidly establishing himself as a very sought after commodity in hip hop.

Who is D.A. Doman?

Besides being a super dope producer, I'm an all-around family guy and a genuinely good guy who enjoys his family and making great music.

How did you come up with the "D.A. Got That Dope" beat tag?

It popped up in my head one day. I had my guy Ohana Bam record it; he's dope, he's signed to Atlantic Records... I shouted it out the way I wanted it to sound, then he [did the same thing] into the mic with his dope voice, and the rest is history.

How did D.A. get that Dope?

(laughs) First, from my never-ending addiction to music-making and second from [the years I've] put in. I studied my craft and eventually, I got that dope.

When did you discover your passion for making music?

When I really discovered it was when I bought an MPC in my sophomore year of high school. I was hooked from then on.

Who are some of the artists and or producers that have influenced your sound?

I can't name [them] because I love so many artists and producers. I have a ton of favorites from back in the day til now. I'd like to think that it's my love of hip hop and growing up in Chicago that contributed to my style of production.

You're based in Hollywood now, how long has Los Angeles been home?

L.A. is definitely home. I've been here for close to eight years now, I believe.

Where are you originally from?

My hometown is the home of the deep-dish pizza, some of the dopest rappers in music, and the 'Taste of Chicago.'

What is your nationality?

I'm a mix of a lot of different things. It's funny because people ask me that all the time. I like to say I have United Nations face. One person will think I'm from one place and another person will think I'm from another place.

What's the hip hop scene like over there?

In Chicago? [There is] a lot of talent. I wish there were some major label offices there.

Would you consider yourself a hip hop aficionado?

Without question... yes. I eat, breathe, and live for hip hop. Hip hop is its own distinctive style and because if that, its cultural influence is undeniable.

What is it about hip hop that drew you in?

The music; from the time I was in third grade to the time I was in eighth grade, I always just zoned out to the instrumental. That's where my focus was. I always loved the rapping but I was never a guy who memorized verses. I only really started paying attention to lyrics in high school if I recall correctly.

You were recently honored with an ASCAP Award. That had to be pretty awesome?

Yeah, it's my second year in a row winning one, it's a really great feeling. To be recognized for my work, something that I love to do feels amazing.

Last year, you produced two of the biggest records in hip hop, that had to feel amazing?

It really did. From May to December I produced records that did more than 2 billion streams in that time period. Honestly, the thing I'm most proud about is that "Taste" and "ZEZE" were "hit beats," as Akademiks said. Timbo used to make hit beats pretty regularly, where the beat was so crazy it played a huge role in making a hit, but to me recently there hasn't been as much of that. I was talking about this on IG [Instagram] the other day, but besides "ZEZE" and "Taste," the last real hit beat to me was "Mask Off." Metro killed that one, and everyone went crazy over that beat... But besides that, I can't think of any other recent hit beats. Where the song was a real smash and a huge part of the reason was the beat.

What are some of the biggest records that you've produced?

"ZEZE," "Taste," [and] "Privacy" for Chris Brown. Those are the ones that come to mind. Also, all the other recent Tyga singles I've produced are platinum now, "Swish" and "Dip." "Goddamn" is about to go gold.

How did you get your big break?

My big break came courtesy of producing "Taste" for Tyga featuring Offset. That record just exploded and the rest was history.

How did you connect with Tyga?

I connected with his road manager online through MySpace at the time and from there I started talking to Tyga directly. We started to build, had great chemistry and started making great records.

How did the "ZEZE" record from Kodak Black featuring Offset and Travis Scott?

It actually happened pretty quickly. I sent it to Orlando and he played it for Kodak that night. He got on it and he and Travis Scott, and Offset did their thing. ["ZEZE"] along with "Taste" were the two biggest records in hip hop last year.

How different has life been since the success of "Taste" and "ZEZE"?

A lot easier to get my beats to everyone (laughs). Since creating those records, things have been different and I've been privy to work with some really great artists.

You're working with quite a few artists these days, what projects are you currently working on?

Well, I don't want to speak on it but I have a lot of stuff coming up. Trust me, when they drop you'll know it, without question.

Are there any artists that you'd like to work with?

Honestly, I like working with anyone dope. I'm down to work with artists who I vibe well with and have great music.

How would you describe your style of production?

My style of production is unique to me, with a lot of people copying it. True story (laughs).

When you're not making music, what are you doing in your spare time?

Spending time with my family! My wife and daughter, they're everything. Love you, Christina and Gabriella.

Because you've been in L.A. for a minute I gotta ask you, Kitchen 24 or Roscoe's (House of Chicken and Waffles)?

Neither! They're both weak. I'm from Chicago. My guy Wayne just opened] a Harold's Chicken in Hollywood. Best chicken in L.A. Get 6 pieces with mild sauce.

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