Big Bub As the lead singer of one of Teddy Riley’s 1st groups, Today, Big Bub has remained consistent as an R&B singer with his track record of soulful albums. His latest album, Tug of War, features more R&B classics, as well as gospel classics. In this interesting interview, find out how Big Bub has flipped his style and his take on the entertainment industry.
Interview by Rob Schwartz
WHO?MAG: What made you want to get into the music business? BIG BUB: What made me want to get into the music business is that I knew I had it. I had the passion and the drive. I already knew I was a star.
WHO?MAG: How did the group TODAY form? BIG BUB: TODAY came about in the Latin Quarter days when Andre Harrell discovered us. We were called “The Gents” at that time, but when we signed with Teddy Riley and Gene Woodman, they changed the name to TODAY. That’s how it came about.
WHO?MAG: How did you become the Vice-President of Motown? BIG BUB: I was working with Mary J. Blige “My Life” album and Andre Harrell was there and liked how I related with other artists. Back in the day, people really couldn’t understand her. After that, he was like, ‘If you can work with Mary, you can work with anybody!” And he just gave me a job from there.
WHO?MAG: Can you explain the concept behind the new album “Tug of War”? BIG BUB: Tug of War is about me going through a spiritual struggle of me being a R&B artist and me being a gospel artist and going through the wilderness which is the struggle to become a saved man. I really didn’t want to put out false information to the people by putting out a straight R&B album. It wouldn’t be right. I feel like I would have been telling a lie. I figured since I was still going through the struggle, I might have well come up with the tug-of-war concept. I called the R&B side “Living in the Flesh” and the gospel side “Dying in the Lush”.
WHO?MAG: Creatively, what’s going to make this album different than your first three solo albums? BIG BUB: Ahh man! God has his hands on this project. That’s the difference. When I was doing my other albums, because before I knew him, but I wasn’t really giving him all the thanks and all the respect. Before I was running around wild, spending all kinds of money, sleeping with all kids of women. This time I was more focused. I am now staying with my wife, going to church everyday, and getting my mind and my spirit right. Now, all of the records just started coming quicker. I really didn’t have to think about it.
WHO?MAG: From a songwriter’s perspective, how do you feel about the industry today? BIG BUB: There are a lot of great artist that I love and I love their writing. I feel now that we are lost. I expect some of these newcomers to help keep it alive. We’re in the wilderness. Think about it. But I really appreciate those trying to hold it down. I respect Ne-Yo, Chris Brown, and definitely Usher for doing their thing. But we need to get together, all the R&B acts, because R&B is like rock and roll. R&B is bigger than rock and roll to me. We just need to get together.
WHO?MAG: What’s your process for writing a song? BIG BUB: It comes to the top of my head. I feel the record whether or not I already have melodies. Then I figure out which one would go with the record. I just try to develop it. I get on the mic, give one or two takes, and take it from there.
WHO?MAG: Do you feel with the state of the industry right now that there will ever be another album to break the sales record of 2.4 million copies in one week? BIG BUB: I think it’s possible. Technology is taking over! It can happen!
WHO?MAG: If you can change one thing about the music industry today, what would it be? BIG BUB: More attention for new artists that come on major labels. I would also put some real true soulful R&B singers out there.
WHO?MAG: What’s next for Big Bub? BIG BUB: Scores, jingle, and just keep writing for everybody and keeping music alive. If I can help, I’m here!