The great thing about (and the worse thing) about the internet is the rise of non traditional geographic areas putting their names on the map. My home region of the Pacific Northwest has been making noise. Another such place is the Northeastern states, the colonial states if you will. Massachusetts and Rhode Island have both been making some noise. We’ve had the Nite People from Massachusetts and of course WYDU’s favs Poorly Drawn People hail from Rhode Island. Today’s spotlight also features another artist from Providence, Rhode Island, Big City Bumpus. Big City came to my attention from Storm Davis of course and Storm is usually a lot more picky about his hip hop music than I am, so when he suggested I check out Big City’s music, I was inclined to search him out. Of course Storm was right, Big City Bumpus just puts out straight up fun and enjoyable hip hop. There is no catching bids and poppin’ caps, City relies and lyrics that convey his personal struggle coming up, party themes and battle rhymes. The bad thing is that Big City is known to be a great stage performer, but I obviously can’t convey that through words, so if you get the chance to catch live on the east coast, do yourself a favor and check out a Big City show.
As the Spotlights go, you know we had to catch up with Big City and kick the knowledge with the big guy and get a feel for what he is about….
Big City Bumpus – Waiting
Big City Bumpus – Theme Song
WYDU: Ay yo, what’s good? You seem to be somewhat new on the national scene, can you drop a little knowledge for the kiddies that might not have heard about you as of yet?
Big City Bumpus: My name is Big City Bumpus. I like to make rap songs. I also like to perform them on stage. I took some of those songs and put them on an album called “Everything I Do is Badass” that’s available now.
W: The name Big City Bumpus, sounds like a rare dinosaur or something. How did you acquire that name?
BCB: I’ve had that name for as long as I can remember. It was a nickname my father gave to me as a little kid. My Dad was a big boxing fan and Big City Bumpus was the name of a boxer he liked. He still calls me Big City.
W: You come from a very deep musical background, and are skilled in guitar, bass and even play some piano and were part of a punk band at an early age. How does that knowledge and musical depth aide your career in hip hop and improve your music in general since hip hop isn’t something that you need a deep musical background in….
BCB: From a production standpoint it definitely helps out to have a musical background. Also when it comes to songwriting having different influences helps you to maybe approach a track at a different angle. I try to write great songs, not just try to spit the illest verse over a beat.
W: What attracted you to hip hop in the first place when you had so many other influences around at the time?
BCB: Can’t really say. Probably the same reasons that make millions of other people love hip hop. Even when I was doing different things musically, Hip Hop was still a big part of my life. My band used to do a cover of Automobile by NWA. Rap is my BFF.
W: I’ve been told by other Providence, R.I. MCs that shall remain nameless, oh shoot, it was Storm Davis, that your live show is something to behold (he meant that in a good way). Describe your live show and why it’s exceptionally important to you…
BCB: I love to perform. I try to do it as often as I can. I think the reason I’m good at it is because I’m having fun when Im up there. A lot of rappers get on stage and just try to look cool or tough. I just try to be myself and go nuts for a half hour.
BCB: Providence is jam packed with dope emcees,producers, talent in general. But for a scene there’s really not much unity. A lot of cats just wanna do their own thing instead of building. Shout out to PDP. Me and Dox made some bangers. I would say being close to NYC helps. I think if I lived out in the middle of the woods it would be alot tougher.
W: The new album, Everything I Do Is Bad Ass, dropped earlier this year. How long did you work on the album itself and what kind of obstacles were you faced with while trying to complete it?
BCB: It took a long time to make that album. All of my album was recorded in a small room in my boy Crown’s (who produced most of the album) apartment. That was the biggest obstacle. I also decided to pretty much re record my whole album because from a year or so of performing those songs on the road they developed and sounded way better to me. I got songs on that album that are 5 years old. But they’re new to you. And my next one wont take as long. I promise.
W: What can a listener that has never heard you or your music before expect from Everything I Do Is Bad Ass? Why should they check you out?
BCB: Hip Hop the way it’s supposed to be. Dope beats and dope rhymes. I’m not trying to be someone I’m not. Everything I say on my album is real. People should check me out because I know that they’re sick of the same 6 songs they hear on the radio.
W: The vibe on the album is kind of a party/light hearted vibe, was that something that was intentional? Do you plan on doing different things as far as topics in the upcoming years?
BCB: I think that when Hip Hop was created it was a way to get away from your problems for a moment and just have a good time. It
W: What are you hoping to accomplish with the album? Fame, bling, and mass quantities of females? Or would you rather be known as a top notch artist, yet severely underpaid?
BCB: Fame would be o.k. Money would be better.I just love making music, cause the feeling you get when you make a song that you truly feel is a banger is priceless. Right now the game is fucked up. Nobody is selling records. So to make music to become rich and famous is stupid.
W: Where is Big City Bumpus at in five years? Ten years?
BCB: Hopefully making dope music for a living.
W: Any last words for the Naysayers?
BCB: You’ll see.