Producer duo Cool & Dre won't forget the answer to the question on everybody's minds this weekend anytime soon. After all, they were right alongside the Carters on tour in London, having literally put finishing touches on Everything Is Love just a few hours before it arrived with no warning on Saturday evening (June 17).
But just because the album's release came down to the wire doesn't mean its creation was hasty: Marcello "Cool" Valenzo and Andre "Dre" Lyon describe the work ethic of hip-hop's perfectionist power couple as nothing short of fastidious -- no drum sound, sample or melody was spared their scrutiny. Below, Cool & Dre take Billboard behind the scenes of their Paris stadium sessions, Beyoncé's hands-on role in the writing process and just how much music they have left in the vault.
Beyoncé and JAY-Z work in mysterious ways. Were you surprised that the album came out when it did?
Dre: Nah, we knew what was going on. We were in London with them when the album dropped. JAY-Z and Beyonce are Golden State Warriors: they shoot half-court shorts, and it goes in. We spent three weeks in Paris recording, then we went to Cardiff for like a week. We got to London and knocked out two to three tracks 10 days of finishing up the album. An hour and a half before showtime, Bey and Jay were still cutting up vocals. Three hours later it was released to the world. There are no rules when it comes to those two. Read more...