Producer Duo Pop and Oak Talk Sparkle, Elle Varner and Alicia Keys

They say it’s not how you start but how you finish. Andrew “Pop” Wansel, son of Philly Sound and Philadelphia International songwriter/producer Dexter Wansel, and Warren “Oak” Felder have paid their dues and now are reaping the benefits. They are following the same blueprint paved before them by some of music’s greatest production duos like Gamble & Huff, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis just to name a few. Before going to Jamaica to work on Alicia Keys album, this dynamic production duo lets Singersroom into the world of Pop and Oak.

How they connected

Pop: “We were put together by our manager, we have the same management. When we met, the chemistry was instant. We balance each other out; we both come from two different sides of the world, literally. There is a perfect balance.”

On Working Elle Varner

Oak: “Originally Elle Varner got in Pop first, on some let’s do this random session type stuff. They did a couple days in New York and Philly. They ended having this amazing chemistry together. Pop and I came to New York and six weeks later her album was finished. Working with her has been a real eye-opening experience. Up until that point, I didn’t think I could be a fan of somebody that quickly.”

Being On The Sparkle Soundtrack…

Pop: “I had a meeting with someone at Sony Pictures, which led to us doing music for the upcoming movie “Think Like A Man.” Sparkle was mentioned to me and I border-lined begged for us to be apart of that. I remember that movie, I remember that VHS tape being around my house. I remember watching it, loving the music and horn arrangements.”

Working With Alicia Keys On Her Album…

Oak: “I’ll say Alicia Keys is one of the most creative people I’ve ever had the pleasure of being around. On top of that, one of the nicest and most down to earth person. For someone who has the kind of pressure she is exposed to all the time, you don’t usually get that. She is incredible, she is definitely humbling to work with.”

What’s Next For Pop And Oak

Pop: “Oak has an amazing song with Wynter Gordon called “Don’t Stop.” It is an amazing song, a big dance record. The forthcoming Nicki (Minaj) album. Diggy Simmons, we have both of his current singles “Copy, Paste” and “Do It Like You.” The Elle Varner album, we are really proud of that…I feel like it’s some of our best work to date. We also have our own artists, a male quartet out of Philly who are ironically signed to Motown call MPrynt. We have a young lady out of Southside Chicago named Candice, who was featured on the song “Angel” from the latest Tyrese album “Open Invitation.”


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