In the Zone with Swedish hip-hop producer Average Stranger

Sometimes hip-hop can grow in the most unlikeliest places, but it’s in these places where we find some pure goodness and beats you can nod your head to. Average Stranger reigns from Sweden, and he’s a producer who drives from influences such as J Dilla, Madlib and The Pharcyde, which is very evident in his beat-making.

We chat to Average Stranger about what the hip-hop scene in Sweden is like, his influences and his production process. Margaret Tra writes.

How did you start producing?

A few years ago I began to explore hip-hop and everything the genre had to offer. I've always been a creative nerd and wanted to try something new.  A good friend of mine then introduced me to Fruity loops, and I got hooked. 

What is your production process like?

I'm always on the lookout for dope samples, sometimes it's a drum break that gets the ideas flowing, next time around I might be jamming with the keyboard. It's all very random for me, I'm constantly looking to get in "the zone,” that's when I'm the most productive. 

What's the hip-hop scene like in Sweden?

I'd say its dope if you know where to look. If not, I'd say the scene is bull and pretty much nonexistent.

Who are you influences?

I try to stay diverse, taking influences from Robert Glasper, J Dilla, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Tall Black guy, Astronote, D'Angelo, Philippe Edison, Madlib, The Pharcyde, I could go on forever.

If you could work with anyone who would it be?


Favourite hip-hop song? And why?

There are so many though, 'Slum village - Keep it on' is timeless and a long time favourite of mine. I always find myself nodding when I hear that tune. I like the simplicity and the baseline got some serious bump to it, raps are cray.

What stimulates your soul?

Music, coffee, life and everything it has to offer, food, sleep, science and Ola-Conny.