Born and raised on the east coast in Hartford, Connecticut, BB Mike began to study music at a very young age. Starting with trumpet, he fell in love with jazz, rock, and hip-hop in his youth. He even toured throughout Europe in 2010 with his high school jazz band.
At the end of 2019, BB made his way out to Los Angeles to further pursue his solo work and career. Some of his biggest inspirations besides Kaytranada include MF DOOM, J Dilla, Gorillaz, Knxwledge, Anderson. Paak and Flying Lotus.
Since then, he has been creating music, working on his production skills, and has released three self-produced singles, "Montgomery Blend," Rise Up," and "Goner." As we take our ears to the buoyant hit, we can't help but immediately hear his musical inspiration speak into the relaxed grooves that he portrays in his pieces.
Featuring the elusive vocals of creative Rozie Baker, how the production seamlessly blends with her delicate timbres is genuinely otherworldly. Basking in the upbeat vibrancy that comes pouring in through the instrumentation portion of this track, it's rather mind-blowing to see just how much the lively energy heard in the soundscape can complement the intimate croons heard on a more profound level.
Allowing us to drink from a fountain of tantalizing hues, we admire the way that "Goner" can be placed on as easy-listening background music or in the foreground as the soundtrack to your life. Just like all great producers, we hear how BB Mike allows for room to breathe as each instrumental component has its time to shine amongst the melodic harmonic of a lead vocal on the track.
This is a prime example of what a jazz background would teach an up-and-coming production architect, and it's great to see how BB Mike puts that into action as his dynamism with Rozie Baker leaps from the speakers.
A warm welcome to BuzzMusic BB MIke. We admire the soundscape that is your most recent self-produced single, “Goner.” The two of you work together in such a wonderful manner. How did this collaboration come to be, and what was it like working with one another?
Thank you for those kind words! Rozie and I started working together at a coffee shop in West Hollywood right before the pandemic hit and throughout 2020 learned about each other's musical talents. The collaboration blossomed in the first few months of 2021. I sent over the beat for 'Goner' in February with one lyric idea: "You always wandered too close to the edge no hands on me." Rozie really enjoyed the groove, vibe, and lyrical idea, so we decided to meet at my studio in Hollywood and have a writing/recording session. Working with Rozie was amazing because every time we met to write and get ideas down in Ableton, it felt so raw and honest. We had both been through a toxic relationship recently, so our emotions and ideas matched in such a nice and unique way. We both got down on paper what we really wanted to say, and how we actually felt when we were enduring those hard times.
Could you please shine a light on what the creative process looked like as you both brought this vision to fruition?
Our creative process was spread out over time. With the song's concept beginning in Jan/Feb, our first recording session was in March. We met at my home studio in Hollywood and planned on just getting some ideas down based on the one lyric idea I had already shared. We were able to record those first few lines (beginning of the chorus) that night and really talk about a vision for the song. We listened to artists we each respected and jived with lately. We were both heavily inspired by Kaytranada and Kali Uchis' '10%'. Our next recording session was more productive because we were able to finish the chorus and write a hook and verse. Our mutual friend Kyvon, came by to observe our creative process. This was my favorite session because we were really able to dig deep into each other's memories and emotions. I remember at one point Rozie was lying on the floor for at least 30 minutes trying to finish an idea for our first verse. The final writing and recording process was for the second verse, which was the most challenging to write since we didn't want to sound repetitive in our songwriting. After we had all the lyrics, we made sure our vocals were consistent and done all in one session instead of trying to piece together the random segments we had from over the past few months. So once the structure and vocals were done in July, the rest was up to me (mixing & mastering), which took some time since I wanted the song to sound really crisp and bouncy. I finally finished and mastered the tune in August. Throughout the summer though we got our promotional material ready by having a photoshoot for press photos and shooting a visualizer near downtown LA for the Spotify canvas.
Can we expect more BB Mike and Rozie Baker collaborations in the future? Were there any major takeaways as you released this track to the public?
You most certainly can expect more BB Mike x Rozie Baker collabs in the future! Between our time together working at the coffee shop and creating art together, Rozie and I have become very close since the pandemic began. We might not be in the same place come next year, but that won't stop us from working together remotely. I am currently working on new music right now with an assortment of vocal chops Rozie has recorded over time, and they are really fueling my creative process & creations! So stay tuned. A major takeaway I got from this release was that there is no better feeling than being proud of your art, and how it can benefit those around you positively. We had a release party at my friend's house and I was able to perform the new song on a DJ set. I also realized that my path as an independent artist will continue to be both rewarding and challenging. I am more focused on how the song does over a long period of time vs. how it does on release day.
How does “Goner” compare to the other two songs previously released under your production?
"Goner" is my best work yet. It really shows my growth as a solo artist. It is much more electronic/house-focused. The last song I released, 'Rise Up', is a wonderful tune featuring my friend Sarah, and was fun to make in the early months of the pandemic. It is much more RnB-focused. I believe the song could've used more sections/hooks. 'Montgomery Blend' is chill, sample-collage focused, and definitely unique but when I relisten I can tell that I still had some things to learn about mixing and laying out multiple ideas in just one concept. 'Goner' is so cool to see complete because I have noticed that my skills in mixing, songwriting, and soundscapes have improved so much, and I feel very proud to see the growth across the three songs.