Our 2022 Annual Report continues with the announcement of Andrew Watt as our Producer of the Year. As the year winds down, stay tuned for more awards, lists, and articles about the best music, film, and TV of 2022. You can find it all in one place here.
Though just 32 years old, Andrew Watt has the experience of a 60-year-old industry vet. He began playing guitar for Justin Bieber in 2015, and since then, he’s been at the helm of some of the biggest records in the pop and rock worlds. In addition to writing and producing standout Bieber cuts like 2021’s “Peaches,” Watt worked on multiple hit albums and singles from Miley Cyrus, Post Malone, Camila Cabello, Lana Del Rey, Ozzy Osbourne, and many more. He also won a 2021 Grammy Award for Producer of the Year, Non-Classical.
A notable guitar player who possesses an unmatched rolodex of high profile talent, Watt is best friends with Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith and is a member of Eddie Vedder’s band, The Earthlings. He made 2022 his biggest year yet producing all of Vedder’s Earthlings album, helming Ozzy Osbourne’s fall effort Patient Number 9, and lending a hand to Elton John’s collaboration with Britney Spears, “Hold Me Closer.”
Not only that, Watt continued his pop music legacy by teaming up with regular collaborator Post Malone for “Wrapped Around Your Finger,” and extended his resume through work with The Kid LAROI and Ed Sheeran. Watt’s versatility between styles and impressive rise makes him a serious player in today’s genre-less landscape, and his work in 2022 alone is well deserving of our Producer of the Year.
When he connects with Consequence over Zoom just days after Thanksgiving, Watt is already headed to the studio. “You give a lot of yourself, you give a lot of your life to do this… for instance, it’s a Sunday at 2:00 p.m. and I’m driving to the studio,” Watt says. “I can’t believe this is real life,” he adds, acknowledging the wonder and novelty of regularly working with his biggest heroes.
He’s continuing his busy year by wrapping up work on Iggy Pop’s new album, Every Loser, which is due in January 2023. The project marks not just an exciting collaboration, but the first official release on Watt’s new label, Gold Tooth Records. “It was this ‘luck of the draw’ thing,” Watt says of signing Iggy Pop, another one of his childhood heroes. “We were making this album with Iggy, and he didn’t have a label, he wasn’t signed, so we thought, ‘Why don’t we just do it on my label?’… It’s been great getting to design all the merch with him and help him with all this stuff. I’m having a blast.”
Watt has also recently finished a new album with none other than Morrissey. Bonfire of Teenagers, which is due out in February of 2023, is the British songwriter’s fourteenth album, and his first with Watt behind the boards. “He’s a very, very, very special singer, one of the greatest singers of all time,” says Watt of working with Morrissey. “Everyone was firing on all cylinders… his vocals were done in one or two takes per song. It was an unbelievable experience for many different reasons.”
Whether it’s working with ’80s legends or present-day pop royalty, a Watt production always has one thing in common: an apparent, undeniable adoration of music. His joy is teeming, his respect admirable, and his abilities top-notch. As Watt continues to build out Gold Tooth and nab successive high profile collaborations, the question becomes clear: Who else can do it but Andrew Watt?
Below, Watt discusses his busy 2022, his thoughts on TikTok and the changing music industry, the music he grew up on, and what we can expect from one of the biggest producers in the business in 2023.