In rare instances, such as this one, I am given the platform to take a step back from the responsibility of delivering news and instead address matters as a fan, which at the end of the day is all I really am – a fan.
In writing this, I took an entire morning to cycle through Monsterifik, Damn Fool, and No Filter to try and really understand the path you chose with Strange Music. Moving from album to album, there’s no denying your roots in the streets. Where most MCs will never have the actual background to back up their lyrics and tales of hustling, you’ve portrayed the life of an actual hustler. That much I know. I recall once defending the music on Monsterifik to fans who did not quite “get it”. Monsterifik, to me, was an album reflecting the experiences, mistakes, and lessons learned from a man trying to speak to the world. I’m not sure why, but I always felt like I “got it”. That album is what defines Big Scoob to me.
By the time Damn Fool was released, I was well into my time with the Strange Music viral team. I recall anticipating Damn Fool and receiving little tidbits of information along the way. Admittedly, I was pretty excited to see what you would bring to the table on a second go around. Leading up to the release, we ran an interview with you that revealed a lot about what was most important to you. Until that point, most of our fans were probably not aware of your concerns and, in all honesty, fears within the music business. It became increasingly clear that the rap game was not quite shaping up to be what you had hoped for, and you said it all with one sentence: “I miss that street money, man. That’s as real as I can put it. I miss the comfortability of having that paper.” With that one interview, my perspective compeletely changed. I can remember thinking, “Damn…what if Scoob goes back to the streets?”
Fast forward a bit, and now we have No Filter sitting in front of us. If it wasn’t obvious before, fans got a huge dose of truth on this EP. No Filter is exactly what that EP turned out to be as you laid it out: this rap game ain’t working out. Without digging too deep, my take on that EP is a little mixed. While I wholeheartedly believe that some of your best music is on No Filter, I also have mixed feelings over what I took as the words of someone who is slightly bitter and maybe even resentful. To who though? The fans? Certainly not. One full day of work with the Strange Music viral teams reveals tweets, Facebook comments, forum discussions, and much more from fans who not only wish to see you on tour, but are calling for your return to the spotlight. It may come as a surprise, but the fans are calling for you.
Shortly after it was revealed that you were experiencing health issues, I was in Kansas City for Tech N9ne’s homecoming at the Midland on the All 6’s And 7’s Tour. We were briefly introduced while the VIP function took place, and what I remember most is seeing an individual who was too busy cracking jokes about skinny jeans and “Baby Gap” clothes to express any discontent. I think that’s who the fans miss the most. While promoting No Filter, I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Irv Da Phenom. During a strange moment in the interview, I had to literally ask, “Where is Big Scoob?” All Irv could respond with was, “He’s back in the cut.” Following that interview, there was a lingering feeling among the fans that they would not see Big Scoob return for another one.
The truth is, your frustration with the industry is not unwarranted, but when there’s so many people rallying behind you, maybe it’s worth another look. If I only knew what it was like, perhaps I wouldn’t have even bothered writing this. At the same time, if you only knew how much the fans want you back, you might be reconsider. No Filter and all.
-Victor Sandoval, Assistant Editor Strange Music
Follow Victor on Twitter: @VicMSandoval
Click here to purchase No Filter on iTunes.