Vernon Duane Hill is a native Detroiter whose musical background stretches from classical to gospel, creole, jazz, soul, funk, rock, reggae, zouk, house, hiphop, heavy metal, gothic rock, r&b, and dubstep.
He grew up on Detroit’s northwest side. Vernon began playing piano at Anderson Memorial Baptist Church when he was 6 and as the story goes…
“My mother told me to play something classical”, he says,
“The first time I did, it freaked people out and then I got a standing ovation, after that I was hooked”.
Vernon graduated from Northwestern High School, playing trombone and piano at the school’s jazz band and orchestra and studying jazz and classical music from Detroit legends such as Harold McKinney, Ernie Rodgers, Bess Bonnier, and John Massenburg while also playing live gigs as a student with Motown artists like The Temptations, The Dramatics, Michael Henderson, and The Contours.
When he was 20 years old, Vernon moved with his family to Germany. He developed his professional career living for 20 years in Germany, where he got his first big break in 1997 when he met producer and studio owner Jerry Parham and produced and co produced ‘Time Heals the Pain’ with Joy Denalane in 1999, and ‘If I Could Get The Chance’ with Mike Marshall from Luniz and Timex Social Club for Sony / BMG.
After meeting producer RJ Rice in Detroit he recorded with Slum Village, J Dilla, Timberland, Black Eyed Peas, Sergio Mendes, Truth Hurts, D12, Dwele, Phat Kat, and Platinum Pied Pipers.
Vernon served as the bandleader for Slum Village, Phat Kat, Bahamadia, Mystic and Phife Dawg, Rasta Roots, and Jarobi from A Tribe Called Quest and went on tours like The OkayPlayer Tour, 2001 with The Roots, Lyricist Lounge Tour, and Voodoo Tour with D’Angelo, which led to additional tours where he shared the stage with artists such as Jill Scott, Brian McKnight, Patti Labelle, Lalah Hathaway, Mint Condition, The Time, Monica, Montell Jordan, Angie Stone, Musiq Soulchild, George Clinton, Erykah Badu, Justin Timberlake, and Dead Prez.
Since returning to Europe, Vernon has taken up residence in Berlin and has been producing for various artists from Germany, Turkey, Italy, Guadeloupe, Switzerland, America, and the United Kingdom.
He also has shared the stage with Paul Randolph, Dwele, and Dead Prez from New York. In addition, to collaborations with other Berlin artists like Dr. Motte (Love Parade founder), he composed a soundtrack with documentary film director Darnell Summers for the film The Other Americans.