Underground Interview With ScUba
A 2020 Hampton Graduate with a Bachelor’s in Music Recording Technology. ScUba comes from Jacksonville, FL coming out of MD. He got the name scUba at an Open Mic after doing one of poems at The Train Station
ScUba emphasizes on the ‘U’ because of how he wants to produce something his audience can have a feel for. His inspiration in his art would be in Hip Hop, Storytelling Rap and R&B. ScUba wants to capture the vibe that artist like OutKast, Slick Rick and Nate Dogg successfully were able to do and go mainstream. Once he does, he wants to not only continue making music back give back to everyone that invested their time & money to him. From funding all the music organizations on Hampton University’s campus (Choir, Marching Band, Jazz Ensemble & Recording Studio), which currently isn’t being funded, to continuing XXXTentacion’s ‘Helping Hands Challenge’ before he passed.
Blessings! Stay safe!
What Musical Genre Do You Feel Best Describes Your Music And How Would You Describe Your Sound?
Hip Hop/R&B would best describe my music. Describing my sound, I would say it’s more of a Poetic & Old School Storytelling Hip Hop sound. It’s very different, but nostalgic and catchy.
Growing up, my Pops always played Hip Hop and any other Rap music that was hot at the time, while my Mother was more into R&B. They’d say, there’s always a reason for everything, which is why I wanted to have a story for every song I make and a story for those stories in the form of an Album/EP. It’s that Storytelling element I find to really be the glue to whatever I put together.
How Did You Get Your Name? Is There A Story?
I got my name from an Open Mic Night at the Train Station in Newport News, VA. Before making music, I was doing poetry there and I would sing a bit on the side too when I was in College.
One night I was heading to the Train Station, but this time I decided to perform one of my first poems that was a little controversial called “I Just Want to F*ck”. In the poem, I was describing the difference between a Hoe, Girl, Woman and Lady. By the time, I finished it I got a better reaction than I anticipated. Even the MC, Q5, got on the Mic and said “You kind of just dove into that like a Scuba Diver.” I thought the concept of me talking about some deep, relatable and down-to-earth material was dope and I enjoyed performing it knowing that someone will pick up what I’m putting down. That’s when scUba was born. The capital ‘U’ is to emphasize that it’s all about you, as in the communities I take part of, my audience and how I want to support both through music, entertainment & community service along with my future family to the best of my ability.
What Are or Have Been Your Musical Influences?
My Parents are definitely one of my influences. My Pops would always tell me, “Everything I do is for you because it’s all about you!”, as he served in the Navy for 24 years.
The Church would be another teaching me that God doesn’t work for you, but through you and I wanted to continue to be his vessel especially in today’s time.
As far as Artists, Nate Dogg/Slick Rick/Outkast when it comes to the storytelling musical element. Nate Dogg stood out for me. There’s other individuals like Frank Sinatra & Nat “King” Cole that sang Baritone, like myself, but Nate Dogg was and still is a Hip Hop Icon that was able to sing Baritone and Rap. It was hard trying to find that specific range as a kid and even now to this day.
What Are You Working On Now? Any Future Collaborations We Can Look Forward To?
I had just recently released my first album called “Finding My Voice”. Now I’m in the process of trying to put together my own Home Studio. I want to continue to work on & refine my delivery and boost some production skills. Once I get that up and running, I plan on making another Single and keep moving forward. Time will tell from there. As far as Collaborations, I’m still looking for a solid person or people, but I’m down for anyone dedicated to their craft and improvement just as I am.
What Is Your Ultimate Goal In The Music Industry? What Is Your Plan Of Action?
My goal is to be the next big thing to, not only, stay on Radios & Streaming Services, but also be the bridge for Artists to come. From Music Business and the etiquette that comes with it to Music Recordings and the hand in hand Theatrical emotion & delivery.
My Plan of Action, currently, is to be able to build up some funds, find & expand a team for the current Label I have and keep a steady presence, while preparing to get the ball rolling when everything opens back up.
What Is Your Favorite Track To Perform Live and Why?
From the songs that I’ve performed so far, it’s close between “Run ($)” and “No Games”, but I’ll have to go with “No Games”.
I just love seeing people’s reaction, as the song starts and I adjust to the stage & microphone. I see it on people's faces and it’s like “Okay. He’s about to really spit.” Then, Boom! I start singing in about a Tenor 2 range and that’s when folk get bug eyed. After I get through the Hook, I bring the level back down like the beginning and start spitting. The song just flows like a smooth car ride. It’s a really dope song I love to perform because I’m flowing, hitting these notes no one expects me to hit and just overall having a good time. I highly recommend people give that song a listen and vibe with me.
What Has Been The Biggest Challenge In Your Career Thus Far?
The biggest challenge in my Career, even to this day, is getting out of my comfort zone on and off the microphone. It’s one thing for someone to mention it to you, and it’s another to know it. All the things I can do or have done is great, but I still have that same problem due to past issues and personal problems. Slowly, but surely, I’ve been brushing it off the more I progress, and as life goes on I’m going to put it in the music and make my biggest challenge into my biggest blessing.
What’s Your Typical Songwriting Process?
I like to listen to the beat first because in my opinion the true artist of any song is the producer. I listen to the beat as many times as I have to and then I write the Hook down next.
Writing the Hook is probably the best part of making a song. If you’re gonna make something might as well get someone hooked on it, as the word implies, so that they’ll want to keep hearing that song and the ones to come.
My Hook then becomes my Main Idea. Just like an Essay, I break a Verse down one idea/perspective as a supporting detail to smoothly get back into the Hook.
From there, the intro, outro, bridge or even a 2nd Hook would just vary depending on the beat. If I want to switch a segment to emphasize a point or add my flare to it I add a bridge or 2nd Hook. With Intros/Outros, I try to just stick to go-to-adlibs and after awhile I may switch up the style to show some versatility.
Overall, when it comes to writing songs I use basic Stanzas like Poetry. When it comes to the Artistic Style I’d like to compose everything together similar to how Classical Music has Sonata Allegro Form.
How Has Social Media Influenced Your Career As An Artist?
It has influenced my Career more than I ever thought it would honestly. When it comes to anything in this world, the hardest step is always the first one. As I progress in my career, I see those who have been there from the start, some inbetweeners and even some folk I may not even know. I’m seeing how my audience grows with my musical progression and it’s really dope how Social Media influenced that.
What Are Some Tracks and Artists Currently On Your Playlist?
Tobi Lou- Delete My # Baby
Childish Gambino- Algorhythm
Missy Elliott- Bad Man
DaniLeigh- Lil Bebe Remix
What Did You Do Before You Started Making Music?
Before I started making music, I was into Poetry, Cooking, Script Writing and Sports & Fitness. It has been a while since I’ve done Poetry, but I still Cook, I’ve written my own Play as well and I've been trying to stay in shape. I usually don’t drink sodas because I don’t like the taste, I don’t eat too much fried food and I drink plenty of water. I use to Kickbox as well, and I want to get back into that again someday.
Any Advice For Young People (Men or Women) That Want To Succeed In The Music World?
Stay true to you! Believe in yourself just like our God believes in you! Treat your music like they’re your children because that’s what all your songs are essentially. Lastly, be aware of who you keep around you, for they are a reflection of who you are!
What Would You Change In The Music Industry If You Were A Top Music Executive?
The approach to find new talent on a Mainstream Artist platform to even an Agent.
Instead of making auditions, Live or television series have it be more natural and personal. Negotiate a deal with a mainstream restaurant or business and send A&Rs, Publicist, Managers and the like to those locations. Once there, set up one day a week every other month for Professional Open Mic for Artists, and a type of form on the weekend for the Music Business positions. This will be advertised depending on the negotiation deal to be discussed.
In these locations, those positions will switch locations periodically to see how local talent will present themselves. This sets it up for the Industry to not just always have that new star they’re looking for, but an Opener as well and maybe even more A&Rs, Publicist and Managers once the ball really gets rolling.
How Do You Feel About Originality?
I always believed and was taught by a wise man that Creativity is a Necessity. Some people are afraid of change, but may also turn around and argue the originality of something. Originality is what keeps things fresh because there wouldn’t be Tradition if no one had Originality.
Is There Anything Else We Should Know About You Or That You Would Like to Add?
If you like something give a like and share with your friends and comment some love. Make sure you check out the link for FNX Fit and use the code “scUba” and you can receive 10% off of your order. 15% off of your order if you follow me on Social Media, so be sure to follow me on Instagram at least or all platforms if you feel led to. Peace and blessings! God loves you and so do I!