Daron Jones
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Heads are nodding in the control room of DJ Music Studios in Atlanta, GA where Daron Jones, one of the members of multi-platinum pop/R&B group, 112, is leaning over the studio console turning the fader down on “I Should Have Cheated,” a song he produced for Keyshia Cole’s debut release, The Way It Is. She listens intently as her voice is layered against the keyboard loop and smiles. Daron gives her a knowing look, the same one that Biggie gave R. Kelly after hearing the track that would become, “F**king You Tonight,” another Daron Jones production. As their eyes connect, Daron remembers that same feeling he got after producing and co-writing “Cupid,” from 112’s self-titled debut which would launch their career on Bad Boy Records.

After several Grammy, MTV, Billboard, BET, Soul Train Awards, American Music Award nomination, over 7 million albums sold domestically, and 15 million worldwide, of course, he should know a hit when he hears one. Musically, 112 has carved a unique niche that touches everyone from dance floor anthems to sexy bedroom ballads. While their signature seductive vocals are a key ingredient in their romantic arsenal, their songwriting and the instrumentals layered against their melody is another component that has defined 112’s sound and made them one of the most innovative and resilient groups in the R&B/hip-hop genre.

If Daron’s recent success creating a career defining song for Keyshia Cole and the club classic for Biggie and R.Kelly is an indication of what’s to come, then his upcoming production of “Forecast,” on Jamie Foxx’s J Records debut and “Good Love,” on Musiq Soulchild’s upcoming album will cement Daron’s status as one of music’s most sought-after producers. “As part of a group with four lead vocalists, it’s hard to show your individuality. What I bring into 112 as the in-house producer is our sound.” If you read the credits, you’ll recognize Daron’s production credit on most of their more recognizable singles most notably “Cupid,” and “Anywhere,” which are huge hits for 112. He’s also produced and written songs for everyone including Usher’s “Separated,” from his multi-platinum 8701 album, “Floatin On Your Love,” for The Isley Brothers’ Mission To Please album, two songs “Caramel Kisses,” and “Love Will Pass You By” on Faith’s Keep The Faith, “Secret Love,” on Kelly Price’s Soul Of A Woman, and “Love Is Such A Crazy Thing,” on Pink’s multi-platinum album Can’t Take Me Home. Daron has also produced tracks for hip-hop notables like Bonecrusher, 8Ball, and The Notorious B.I.G.

In fact the first song you would recognize besides “Cupid,” and “Anywhere,” that he produced is “F***king You Tonight,” a hit single and club classic performed by Biggie and R.Kelly, released on Biggie’s Life After Death album.

He never would have guessed at the time that two of music’s legendary artists would select his DAT simply labeled DJ, from a pile of tracks lying around the Daddy’s House studio, but that’s exactly what happened. At the time, Daron was in Trinidad with 112, when he received the call that would mark a defining moment in his career as an emerging producer. “When I created that track it wasn’t intended for anyone. It was actually one of the many tracks that I just threw on DAT, but I remember thinking to myself, this track is a hit. I left it at Daddy House and somebody got a hold of it, and gave it to Biggie and R. Kelly. I was surprised that they picked it, considering all the Bad Boy Hitmen tracks that were in the studio.”

Over time his ability to recognize a hit developed and he learned the business of publishing, production, and the value of having a hit single. “On ‘I Should Have Cheated,’ I wanted to create a song that men and women would identify with, but from a female’s perspective. We’ve all had a moment when we’re completely faithful, trying to do the right thing, resisting opportunities, but the person you’re with still thinks you’re cheating. It makes you feel
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