Dallas Austin Announces Autobiography, ‘The Voyage to Dallas Austin’


Legendary songwriter Dallas Austin sat down with REVOLT TV to discuss his early days in music, the making of TLC’s hit single “Creep,” his favorite Black musicians, and his autobiography The Voyage to Dallas Austin.

“My autobiography is called The Voyage to Dallas Austin; you’re the first to know about this,” Austin tells REVOLT TV. “It’s a digital autobiography with NFTS embedded in the book. When it gets to TLC and my plaques, you hear the horn sound of the record.”

The hit producer explains the significance behind the sound of the horn and how the record “Creep” was transformative to TLC’s career growth.

“When I first made the song, I had it up for a couple of days, and it kept playing. I have the floppy disk, the lyric sheets, I have all the stuff from when I first wrote “Creep.” It’s all in my vault, man. I kept all the stuff,” Austin continues.

“I kept the song up for a couple of days; I thought it sounded to country back then…I recorded it; then I put a horn sound in it last because I couldn’t find a cymbal crash. It became the signature of the song,” the producer adds. “It was our crossover record to be taken a little more serious. By the time we did ‘What About Your Friends’ and ‘Ain’t 2 Proud 2 Beg’ on the Ooooooohhh… On the TLC Tip album, I knew a lot of people thought they weren’t going to make it to a sophomore project or continue the success. ‘Creep’ was a really important record for us because it crossed the girls over.”

To date, Austin’s three-decade-long catalog of hits has graced the Billboard 100 charts, which includes Rihanna’s “FourFiveSeconds,” TLC’s “Creep,” Brandy, and Monica’s “The Boy Is Mine.” In 2019, Austin was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. This induction inspired him to create his own Walk of Fame in Atlanta.

Along with his musical talents, Austion also is an entrepreneur. The music producers created a company titled Dallas Austin Distribution, which is defined as the “Future of Music and NFT Distribution.”

“I started my distribution company, DAD, and I’m excited,” says Austin. “I always wanted a distribution company, but it was something missing from all the other ones as far as how you related to the artist. Most of them started from a tech company standpoint instead of a music standpoint. For me, I’m music. I’m getting records from Korea, from London, from LA, from Asia, everywhere. I see these records loading up from everywhere.”

“I like the fact that my staff actually can communicate with people as needed,” Austin adds. “A lot of times, if you’re making records at home, that’s fine. You don’t need all that. Some artists have managers, they got their own money. They own their masters, they just don’t know properly what to do with it. We help navigate that, that’s really exciting. New music in Atlanta is really exciting.”

Austin is deeply rooted in the Atlanta music scene and accredits Atlanta’s musical sound for the evolution of music in the past 20 years.

“It’s pretty much defined it for the last 20 years,” Austin explains. “I remember when Atlanta wasn’t accepted at all. Me and Jermaine were trying to get the stations to play our records on the radio here. It wasn’t a system, it was more Atlanta. It got to the point where it was almost overkill. Every record, whether it’s a hip hop or R&B record, came out of here. It means a lot because the South is where Blacks couldn’t go to the same bathroom as a white 60 years ago. That’s not a long time.”

“You look at the progress that’s been made for me, Jermaine, Organized Noize, even Scooter, and everyone for that matter; it’s been amazing what’s been done with Black music during that time. We have the first-ever Black music and entertainment Walk of Fame; it’s exciting,” he adds. “It’s crazy because out of all the times we’ve been in LA and seen the Hollywood Walk of Fame, we have a real one in Atlanta that starts in October. Right by the stadium, it’s incredible. It’s becoming a part of history. Growing up here wishing we had stuff like that to now being on that caucus is crazy.”

Click here to read Dallas Austin’s full interview.