Hiero Producer Series: Opio

Installment #8 of the Hiero Producer Series: Opio

I would classify Opio as the second most soulful producer from the Hieroglyphics camp after A-Plus. He didn’t start crafting beats until ’94 or thereabouts; he has not a single credit on either of the Hiero Oldies tapes, and he didn’t contribute anything to the first Souls LP, so I’m assuming that he was influenced and/or encouraged by the other members to see what he could do behind the boards. His skills as a producer were first displayed on the sophomore Souls LP “No Man’s Land”, with “Rock It Like That” being the obvious highlight. He would then lace Del with the beat for “Love Is Worth”, which, to me, is the dopest beat on “Future Development”, and the greatest beat that Opio ever produced, period. In subsequent years, he’d go on to produce outstanding tracks such as “Unseen Hand”, “Shooting Stars”, “Birds Eye View”, Casual’s “Who Do That”, and three bangers on the ’98 Hiero family album “Third Eye Vision”, with “Oakland Blackouts” being the true standout track.

Check the audio samples and see for yourself; Opio was definitely one of the most slept-on producers in the mid-to-late 90s west coast underground hip hop scene. I feel like I’ve said similar things about all of the other Hiero producers, but hopefully, after 8 installments and 24 volumes, you’re getting a sense that the Hieroglyphics camp was truly on some other shit.

Opio – Production Files Volume 1
1. Del – Love Is Worth
2. Del – Love Is Worth (Original)
3. Souls Of Mischief – So You Wanna Be A…
4. Souls Of Mischief – Rock It Like That
5. Souls Of Mischief – Hotel, Motel
6. Souls Of Mischief – Unseen Hand
7. Casual – Who Do That
8. Souls Of Mischief – Shooting Stars
9. Souls Of Mischief – Birds Eye View
10. Opio & Pep Love – Hollywood Pt. II
11. Opio – Opio Verse
12. Opio & Del – Oakland Blackouts
13. Opio & Del – Oakland Blackouts (Original)
14. Opio & Pep Love – See Delight

Opio – Production Files Volume 2
1. Souls Of Mischief – Acupuncture (Remix)
2. Souls Of Mischief – Mama Knows Best
3. Souls Of Mischief – Medication
4. Souls Of Mischief – Phoenix Rising (Resolution)
5. Souls Of Mischief – Enemy Minds
6. Souls Of Mischief – Rock It Like That (Instrumental)
7. Souls Of Mischief – Unseen Hand (Instrumental)
8. Souls Of Mischief – Shooting Stars (Instrumental)
9. Opio & Pep Love – Oakland Blackouts (Instrumental)


Del – Love Is Worth

Del – Love Is Worth (Original)

Souls Of Mischief – So You Wanna Be A…

Souls Of Mischief – Rock It Like That

Souls Of Mischief – Unseen Hand

Casual – Who Do That

Souls Of Mischief – Shooting Stars

Souls Of Mischief – Birds Eye View

Opio & Pep Love – Hollywood Pt. II

Opio – Opio Verse

Opio & Del – Oakland Blackouts

Opio & Pep Love – See Delight

–Roy Johnson

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8 Responses to “Hiero Producer Series: Opio”

  1. MD says:

    "Shooting Stars" is ridiculously good. Completely slept-on.

  2. DJ4AM says:

    This is one onf the best Hip-Hop blogs I've ever seen, many things for all of the good work and genuine love of music. I got to work with Opio a couple of years ago while producing the Dopestyle 2XCD "The Little Happy / Fool's Pool" released on the Daly City label out of San Fancisco. Here's a link to a video I made for the track. Word:


  3. Damien TallTree89* says:

    do know where i can find any of the super old hiero trcks from the old sound vault? i know what they sound like but forgot the names of em.. please help me rekindle these fresh gems.. peace!

  4. Damien TallTree89* says:

    btw dope blogs u got posted here man!

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