The Instagram piano man, The Outline

scott storch learn piano

The Instagram piano man

Instagram is the best social network, because that is the one that hip-hop producer Scott Storch posts videos of himself playing piano on.

Scott Storch

The Instagram piano man

Instagram is the best social network, because that is the one that hip-hop producer Scott Storch posts videos of himself playing piano on.

Even if you are unfamiliar with the parable of Scott Storch, the dean of hip-hop beats featuring squiggly little earwormy keyboards, if you were alive in the 2000s and listened to the radio you are already intimately familiar with his work. You can hear the plinks of the classically trained pianist in Dr. Dre’s “Still D.R.E.,” as well as on Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me a River.” He produced both “Lean Back” and “Make It Rain” for Fat Joe, “Candy Shop” for 50 Cent, and “Me, Myself, and I” for Beyoncé — alone enough to make him one of the premier hitmakers of the decade — and made bajillions of dollars cranking out beats for pop stars like Christian Aguilera, Ricky Martin, and Mariah Carey. But, like many a musician caught up in the cycle of fame, Scott Storch started doing so much cocaine that he stopped being able to tell the difference between good ideas and very, very bad ones. This, in turn, led to him doing things like making an entire album with Hulk Hogan’s daughter and also a music video in which he rapped on a moving speedboat.

It perhaps goes without saying that the 2000s ended poorly for Storch. By 2010, he was an industry pariah, broke and fresh out of rehab, trying to put the pieces of his once-bulletproof career back together. Despite producing the occasional gem, Storch has spent the 2010s as a member of of the hip-hop production D-List.

But there is a place where Scott Storch thrives, and that place is Instagram. Storch — who at 44 looks and dresses exactly like the heir of some sketchy Russian oil fortune — uses the service primarily for a) posting pictures of himself smoking weed while wearing aviator sunglasses, and b) posting videos of himself playing the shit out of the piano while wearing aviator sunglasses. The weed stuff is kind of boring because anyone can smoke weed, but few can play the piano with the virtuosic skill and unbridled passion that Storch possesses, and only Scott Storch himself can display that virtuosic skill and unbridled passion while wearing aviator sunglasses at all times. His Instagram piano habits briefly made waves in 2013, when he posted a video of himself making a beat while getting a haircut and smoking a cigarette, but in the past few months Storch has come into his own as an Instagram piano guy.

Here he is performing with the rapper Berner, playing a beat live onstage while wearing a tracksuit that’s at least two sizes too large:

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