Baby Bash: Latin Hip
Hop's Quiet Storm
10/11/07 - LatinRapper.com exclusive interview
Its been two years
since we last chopped it up with Houston rapper and
Vallejo native Baby Bash (click here for our first
interview), and the super saucy artist seems to finally be
getting some well-deserved shine.
Although his upcoming
album "Cyclone" isn't slated for release until October
30th, Bash has already earned the rank of #1 Latin artist
on Myspace. His recent boost in fame is validated by over
750,000 digital single and ringtone sales thanks to his
latest smash hit "Cyclone" featuring T-Pain.
Since launching his career in Cali and later heading to
Houston, Bash has sold nearly a million albums and has
recorded countless guest spots on various chart toppers. The
flyest Mexican under the radar speaks with LatinRapper.com
about making hits but it keeping it low key in our exclusive
LatinRapper.com: It's been over two years since we last
interviewed you, what have you been up to since then?
I been on the road, I still been a road warrior, doesn't seem
like I stopped getting on the road. I been on the road, I been
writing, I got Paula Deanda going. Paula Deanda's a great
success story for her, I wrote songs for her, writing songs
for my record label. Doing a movie with Chingo Bling. I'm just
in the studio, I'm doing everything.
What can you tell us about the new album?
I'm still gonna keep my classic Baby Bash style, classic Bash.
Convertible candy paint, chrome, drop the top, hang out with a
fly chica. Know what I'm saying? Fly women type music, I call
it that Buttery music, that super sauce.
I got a couple of
club bangers, I never did no club bangers before, so I went
ahead and did some club bangers for this album. I gout a
couple more conscious songs, songs with messages on them, kind
of more evened it out. But I kept my classic Bash formula.
"Cyclone" has more of a Down South feel than your past
singles, is Houston starting to rub off on you now?
Its not really that. I love Houston, I love Texas, I love
California, I love everywhere. I got to work with Lil Jon, and
that's what Lil Jon gave me. That's a Lil Jon sound, I tried
to sprinkle it up best I could, he actually liked it because I
put melodies on it, he's used to his beats being nothing but
I put my little melodies over it to keep it different,
it still had the same crunk sound that Lil Jon produces, but
with a little more melody over it. It has a more Down South
flavor, but I still keep my Baby Bash sauce on it, real club
friendly and keeping it cracking.
What was the inspiration behind the song?
I listen to a lot of reggae. There's a song called Steppin Out
by Steel Pulse, I always wanted to sample Steel Pulse. They
said a part called 'Cyyyyclone!' and I've always loved that
word, I always said I'm going to make a song about it.
actually seen a cyclone on the weather channel spinning around
in circles, I just thought of a girl dancing going around in
circles. I just thought of it for a female moving her body,
round and round, and I'm just watching kind of like a dance
I've been hearing "Cyclone" and "Na Na" on the radio, but
I'm still not really seeing you in magazines or sites over the
last two years, why have you still been under the radar?
You know, its a strange. I'm happy about it, I'm a low key guy
anyway, I've never wanted a lot of attention, not running
around trying to get attention. My manager's always kind of
mad about that because I'm a low key dude. But being
Mexican.... I think it's weird. If you met the people behind
the magazines and behind the TV shows, have you ever seen the
editors and all the producers that seen these shows...
Black, and I'm not White, they don't know about the
in-between. Especially if I say I'm Mexican, a lot of the big
time people think Mexicans are the people that are fixing the
road, and illegal immigrants, they don't know about the urban
Mexicans that we have now. I'm pretty much pioneering the
urban Mexicans that grew up the way I did, around nothing but
Hip Hop and Rap.
I do think there's kind of reverse racism
going on a little bit, I don't want to get all crazy about it,
but I actually think it's because I'm not Black, I'm not
White, I'm not Puerto Rican either. I'm Mexican, I think that
has a little bit to do with it. I'm just a down to earth guy,
I don't have no drama stories, I don't have no crazy stuff
going on in my life. I'm just a down to earth dude, if I was
committing robberies or some other stuff, yeah, they'd jump
all over it. I'm just a down to earth guy, I don't think they
understand me yet.
Personally I love it, I love where I'm at,
I think I'm America's best kept musical secret. Because I
write, I take pride in my writing. I never wanted to be the
best rapper in the world, but I'mma write you a hit. I'mma
write you a song, arrangement, all that stuff, choruses,
hooks. That's my pride, I don't take pride on being Mr.
Rapper, I take pride in writing whole songs. I think I'm not
Black enough for the urban, I'm not white enough for the pop,
I'm always like the in-between, but I love it.
You mentioned doing a movie with Chingo Bling, what's the
deal with that?
We're working on a movie called "Primos", me and Chingo Bling
and Danny Trejo. A comedy, a kind of like a Half Baked mixed
with Friday, mixed with a little bit of American Me. I'm gonna
play off the characters of Chingo Bling and Baby Bash.
all related, Mexicans have a lot of cousins in cities and
states that they know that they had but never really met, the
movie's about three cousins hooking up that never met, they
hook up later in life and try to make some money. We're
working in a panaderia, we're slangin' empanadas, we're
slangin' anything to make some money. It's a comedy, it's
Chingo Bling at his best, but we're not finished with it yet.
So we won't be seeing this until next year?
Definitely next year, next spring.
Being that your from H-Town, we've spoken with Chingo about
the whole immigration thing, what's your take on the issues
sparking up in the Houston area lately?
I think it's pretty unfair, they're not rational. I think
people are overexaggerating and that overexaggerates to the
media and they blow it up. I think a lot of its unfair, they
need to rethink and come up with a better solution. 99% of the
people that want to come over here want to work, and do good
for their families, and send money home.
I don't understand
the big problem, and I don't understand what the lawmakers
don't get. I think there's another agenda going on that
they're not saying, but I think its unfair and they need to
reevaluate the whole situation. I'm not really political, but
I base everything in my life on common sense, and I don't
think common sense is being used.
Outside of the music and movies, what else have you been up
I'm a studio rat, if I'm not playing basketball or on the road
doing shows, I'm in the studio creating, writing. I have about
100 songs. I also sell songs, I have a few groups coming up,
the Stouie brothers. I write songs every day, I can't perform
them all, so I start giving them to other artists, break some
more careers, create my own artists, my own record label. I'm
more of a simple guy, I don't know if I'm really ready to take
on the responsibility of a big old record label, but I think
in the future it's coming.
In our last interview we talked about the severity of
heroin and its affect on your family, have you ever thought
about going to schools and speaking to students about drugs?
Yeah, I've actually done that a couple of times. Around
California, Fresno, in Houston. Maybe not as much as I've
should, because I'm a studio junkie. But I like to touch on
that, because heroin did affect my family life. I come from a
family of heroin addicts and alcoholics, I'm one of the few in
my family who took the other route, and it turned out great
If there's a way that I can let the kids know, pretty
soon after I get off the road and stop being so busy, get some
down time, I'll get more prepared and jump into that. I can
speak their language better than an older counselor would,
they understand it more.
So are you on tour right now promoting the new album?
Yeah, getting ready, I'm gonna have a long October, I'll be
What's the craziest thing that's ever happened to you on
(laughs) Craziest thing? The weirdest thing, I've had a mother
and daughter try to take me home. Besides that, I still trip
to this day. I've had Gold albums, I've had hit songs, to this
day I still trip out when I hear myself on the radio. When
people want my autograph, kids are screaming and going crazy,
to this day it trips me out. I've never like really all the
way grasped why I am I so special. I laugh every day, I'm
happy where I'm at, I count my blessings every day, but I
still wonder why.
Being that you're blowing up, are we going to see bigger
producers on this album?
Yeah, yeah. Of course I got Lil Jon, who got the first single.
Scott Storch, J.R. Rotem who did Sean Kingston's album and
some of Rihanna's album. Happy Perez, of course. Jim Jonsin,
Play N Skillz, I got an all star lineup of producers.
Did Smokin' Nephew ever go Platinum?
No, its close. It's close, dude. Never went platinum, but it's
Gold. I'm not with Universal no more, so I don't think they
put no effort into nothing of mine any more. I'm on J Records
You're with Clive Davis now, right?
How's that working out for you?
Working out great, Clive Davis is one of the few... I've met a
lot of CEOs in music, and he's the one more into music more
than numbers. A lot of the music industry is based on numbers,
all the big CEOs, all the big time people who own the labels,
they wouldn't know a hit if it kicked them in the ass. They go
off trends, they watch MTV all day. 'Do that! Follow this!' a
lot of fad followers, I call them robots.
They go by numbers,
they don't care about the music, they care about the numbers.
Clive Davis cares about the music. I feel proud to be a part
of his company. One of the few guys who cares actually about
the music, and don't care about the numbers, he cares about
the music. That's what I'm about. I'm not about following fads
or doing what they're doing, I'm into the music.
What would you like to let your fans know?
Thanks for all the support, you're in for a surprise, a great
album. I'm proud of this album, its my best album to date. I'm
still writing, for Paula Deanda, Frankie J, Jennifer Hudson,
Whitney Houston. I just did a song on Carlos Santana's new
album coming out called Ultimate Santana. Baby Bash and
Jennifer Lopez, Carlos Santana on one song. Its called the
Ultimate Santana, its his greatest hits: Oye Como Va, Black
Magic Woman, Maria Maria. He's only having two new songs on
the whole album, two new unreleased songs, and me and Jennifer
Lopez is on one. So I'm proud to be with a legend like Carlos
Santana on his new album.
So you're under the radar but you're obviously working
hard, still on your grind.
Yeah, like I said, I'm America's best kept musical secret. I
love being under the radar, I don't need all the attention, I
don't run around wearing a bunch of crazy jewelry, and making
noise. I'm more into the music, the music is more important
than Baby Bash, to me, that's my opinion.
But when musical
people like Carlos Santana and Clive Davis hear my music and
get it and understand it, that makes me more proud than being
on the cover of all these magazines with all these crazy goofy
people acting like they think they know what's up. The media's
so submerged with a bunch of goofy nerds acting like they're
cool and know what's up. If you would only see the people
behind the scenes of all these TV shows and magazines, if
you'd only see who they are, you'd say 'Oh my God, how these
dorky people know what's cool' and they trying to tell America
I stay away from that, maybe it hurts me too, but
my pride factor is real big. I'mma stay myself, I'm not gonna
be all goofy for anyone. I've turned down movie roles because
I'm not trying to be a goofy dude. I can't really act, I can
only be myself. If you only seen the people behind the scenes
who call the shots, you'd be like 'Oh my God, how do they
dictate what's cool in the world', but somehow they do, and
somehow it happens. I love being under the radar.
As long as
my music is quality, I'm good. People like Clive Davis, Carlos
Santana, Lil Jon, Akon, T-Pain, they understand it, as long as
they understand it and they're true musical legends and icons.
If they understand what I'm doing, then I'm not worried about
what the average goofy person thinks about me. I just think
that if they appreciate it and they know music, I'm happy.
When does the new album drop?
October 30th the album comes out, y'all be there. MTV just
edited the video, they're starting to play the Cyclone video.
They made me edit that video like 50 million times, because
they said it was too provocative (both laugh). But then again,
like I said, if I was Black or White, they wouldn't have said
I swear to God, to me I have to work a little bit
harder because I'm Mexican. I don't want people to get mad
because I don't use the word Latino, I use the word Mexican
more. It's weird, the media, they're up there looking down, I
don't think they get that there's a difference. Just like an
immigrant worker, I have to work a little bit harder than the
Black or the White worker to prove myself in this music world.
I never consider myself just a Chicano rapper or a Latino
rapper, I consider myself just a musician.
I do music, I do it
for Black, White, Mexican, Eskimo, Samoan, everybody. I never
label myself. I've been labeled, but my music is for
everybody, music has no color. A lot of times you hear my
music and you wouldn't know what I was, you wouldn't have no
idea, and that's what I like. I don't try to use the Latin
race card ever, I just want people to respect my music and the
hits. I'm like an immigrant worker, I gotta work a little bit
harder when it comes to MTV or the big media outlets, I gotta
go a little bit more, work harder.
Well, be happy that you're even on MTV, you could be one of
those Latin artists on Telemundo or Univision at two in the
Right, right. And I'm proud of them too, I'm happy for
everyone, I'm glad to be a part of all that. Telemundo,
Univision, LatinRapper.com, I'm proud of everybody doing their
thing. I think in the next ten years, we'll get it straight.
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