Apollo Brown is different than most producers. He grew up on the Seals and Crofts—not the Isley Brothers—version of "Summer Breeze." Born into a bi-racial family in Grand Rapids, Michigan, his early influences skewed more toward the music of Journey and The Carpenters than the urban genres his peers often cite as inspiration. This is not to say that once hip-hop came into play, Apollo wasn't all in. Just as easily as he can praise the virtues of yacht rock, the 29-year-old beatsmith can name personal heroes—Gang Starr, Wu-Tang, Mobb Deep, M.O.P., Nas, and Black Moon—from the early 90s period in which, for him, beats and rhymes became life. In 2009 Apollo won the Detroit Red Bull Big Tune Championships and competed in the national finals. He then signed as a producer with the Mello Music Group in December of 2009. Apollo's credo is simple: "Everything I make, I try to make it my favorite album of all time.". 2010 is the year in which he stakes his claim to make Apollo Brown a household name.