“I’m just a nigga that makes hard music but also has a good sense of humor.”
Big Baby Scumbag contains multitudes. His list of inspirations is just as flexible as his raps. On one song he could be invoking the high-speed thrills of Dale Earnhardt on the next he could be sneaking through the darkness a la Batman. Though his inspirations are all over the place, Big Baby never lets them dictate his sound. His accomplishments as a memer and love of Yu-Gi-Oh seamlessly translate into exceptionally hard music that makes you want to hit a lick for a deck for a starter deck. We had the chance to catch up with the burgeoning Florida MC and learn more about his inspirations musically and culturally.
You have an endless database of cultural references in your music. Where did you discover your love of pop culture?
I think it started when I began listening to Lil B. He always made references to video games, anime, celebrities, movie characters, TV sitcoms, cartoons, whatever in his music. Mind you, this is before “meme rap” or “anime rap” was even a thing. I feel like I hit a special place when I make songs like “Dale Earnhardt,” “Bruce Wayne,” “Steve Austin,” “Metal Gear Solid,” “Hammer Time,” “Lucky Charm,” etc. These are all phrases, brands, titles, and figures that people are familiar with. It’s about being able to reach any type of audience. For instance, a fan of my song “Dale Earnhardt” could possibly hate rap music. But they love that song because it’s about their favorite NASCAR driver. That same example can go for a bunch of other songs of mines.
Would you rather drink a Bud Light with Tony Stewart or Dale Earnhardt?
I would need to crack a cold one with Dale Jr and see if he knows the song word for word (laughs).
You have an affinity for Yu-Gi-Oh. What’s your favorite episode or moment in the series?
Quick backstory, I got into Yu Gi Oh in the 4th grade. I used to know this kid that lived down the street from me that would go to tournaments. Me and him became friends and eventually it became a thing for me to go to the local card shop every weekend and hang out. I started learning the card game and eventually became obsessed with that shit. Before Yu-Gi-Oh, Pokemon was the big craze. Pokemon was great but it was a little too kiddy-ish for me (even for 4th grader). Yu-Gi-Oh had darker tones to it that attracted me to it. Motherfuckers were getting killed, demonic imagery, etc. I feel like it was for the older audience of kids if that makes sense. My favorite episode of mines is Yami Marik vs Yami Bakura.
Do you have a favorite Yu-Gi-Oh card? Do you play? If kind of deck are you using?
I have a few favorite cards. My top favorite cards being Toon World, Toon Summoned Skull, & Toon Blue Eyes of course. Those are all tattooed on me too. I love Pegasus. He was an antihero that made decisions based on his heart. The show kinda made him look like a bad guy when he wasn’t. Nowadays, I never have time to physically play the card game. I’m very well still a collector. When I play Duel Links, my deck is full of trap cards and magic cards. You can’t win a duel with a million monster cards. You’ll just be all offense. It’s more of a strategy to it. Yugi even tells Joey that in one of the first episodes when he sees how trash Joey’s deck is. There’s also a Yu-Gi-Oh game coming out for the Switch this month. I’m for sure copping.
What’s your favorite anime of all time?
I really like Death Note. I feel like Light when I’m writing raps sometimes. I wanna get Ryuk and Rem tattooed on me soon. I also feel like Ryuk sometimes because apples are my favorite fruit (laughs). I wasn’t always a big anime fan and I’m not afraid to say it. I didn’t know of any animes besides the basics (DBZ,Yu-Gi-Oh, Inyuasha, Yu Yu Hakusho, Bleach, Naruto, Cowboy BeBop, Fullmetal Alchemist, One Piece etc). And even then, I wasn’t keeping up with episodes. If it was on TV, I’d watch it. Do you remember Toonami? I think that’s where almost everybody’s fascination with anime started from. Adult Swim too..Lately I’ve been watching a lot of Kill La Kill, Gundam Wing, rewatching Gantz, Attack on Titan, and I’m slowly getting into JoJo’s.
You have a lot of songs named after films. What’s your favorite movie you’ve referenced?
Major Payne, for sure. I used to have that movie on VHS and I’ve probably seen it over 20 times. I knew exactly how I wanted the video to look when it got down to shooting the video. Me and all the homies wearing camo like some 90’s No Limit/Cash Money type shit. We almost flipped that Humvee upside down while we was shooting the video (laughs). That day was pretty fucking lit.
You’re a prolific memer, how did that come about? How do you think it’s helped bolster your career?
Yeah, I feel like its helped me to an extent. It gets people looking at your stuff for sure. Most of the time, I just post dumb shit. People just so happen to think it’s funny.
How do you combine meme culture, comedy, and banging ass music without crossing over to joke rap territory? Do you ever get worried about that?
I’ve thought about that before…The thing is I didn’t jump in the game as a meme rapper. My claim to fame was never from me making a goofy meme song that blew up. So that’s not what you really expect from me to begin with. I’m just a nigga that makes hard music but also has a good sense of humor. The music I make reflects my artistry and my emotions at the moment. My social media presence reflects my sense of humor and my opinions outside of music. I can rap about wanting to stomping somebody’s face in… and then tweet a meme about how much I love puppies. It’s polarity.
You’ve got a ton of singles out yet we’re still waiting for your debut project. What’s your thought process behind crafting a full-length project?
I’m working on 4 different projects at the moment. It’s about making everything sound cohesive with each other. For me, it starts with a concept of what I wanna revolve the whole tape around. How do I wanna make you feel when you listen to this? What do these songs mean to me? It’s a bunch of factors man. I want to make timeless music. Not stuff that you digest and forget about a month from now. I always think about my favorite projects that I like to listen to and what made them so special to me. Where was I when I first heard it, who was I dating at the moment, was I in a good or bad point in life, what job was I working, what car was I driving at that point. I’m focused on making emotion evoking music. Whether that’s turning up, crying, raging, romancing, celebrating, and even mourning. We live through music.
Fans are always mentioning you to hop on Smash. Who is your main? Who do you hate playing against?
I fucking love Smash. I vividly remember being 5 years old and watching my older brother playing the original Smash on the N64 with his friends. Then years later, playing Melee for the GameCube. I remember there was this cheat code for Smash Melee where you had to leave the GameCube running all day on the “press start” screen in order to unlock Mewtwo…Something like that. My main is Pit/Dark Pit. I have 5,000,000 in GSP online. Fans try to play me like I’m not good (laughs). I hate playing against Ganon, Bowser, and King K. Rool. Basically heavies. Heavies are slower than average but they do more hit damage and are harder to knock out the park. I’m always posting my friend code and arena code. It’s gotten to the point where I can’t even accept any more friend requests online. I’ve reached the limit so now I’m fucked. What’s funny is the Switch tells you how many hours of play you’ve spent on a game and I’m well over 300 hours of play on Smash..Maybe this is why I haven’t released a project yet.
What the hell is Bulbasaur?
Bulbasaur is garlic frog. period.
Featured image via @franks_been_dead