Premiere: B.A. Scribe Mecca - 'YungPatronus'
B.A. Scribe Mecca’s propensity for reinvention has been the catalyst for a lot of exciting projects in the last couple years. The end of July sees the release of Scribe’s newest project, a collection of lighthearted heavyweight rap jams called YungPatronus. The album flies out and away from Scribe’s previous effort, a crew tape with Tacoma mainstay and frequent Scribe collaborator Yodi Mac. The project, which went under the collective name BADYOSHI was full of sinister, sex hungry, brutalizing trap beats and Soundcloud archetype lyrics. YungPatronus marches to the beats of some different producers and a different mentality.
The beats on the record have left behind the trap influence and earlier work in favor of a moody, groove-heavy space disco. There’s a lot of PNW blood in the record. Rapper / Painter and DMM darlin’ Perry Porter features, as well as fellow Tacoma talents Sotaria and lyricist L.E.X. The record was mixed and mastered by Seattle virtuoso Sendai Mike. Hear some choice cuts from the record and an exclusive interview with Scribe below.
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DMM: How long have you been rapping / perceived yourself as a rapper? Do you perceive yourself as such?
BA: I've been performing for about 5 years, ever since I got to Tacoma. I've been writing and rapping since high school but I wasn't serious about it until I made it up here. I think I'm a performing artist more than a rapper, but I don't have the technical skills to call myself a musician.
DMM: What are your some of your musical favorites or inspirations? Three rap-specific and three musical.
BA: I'd say I'm very into 90’s Project Pat, Mista Don't Play was my favorite album of his. I'm currently inspired by Jay Rock's Redemption album; that has been my vibe all summer. Love Steve Lacey & Frank Ocean vibes; been a HUGE Frank fan since Channel Orange, and I stumbled upon Steve Lacey while building my smoking playlist; Marvin Gaye, Christian Scott Atunde (CHECK HIM OUT), Curtis Mayfield pimpish type shit, I could go on.
DMM: What were you listening to when you made this record? Do you listen to other music when you’re making a record of do you tend to just focus on what you’re making? Do you welcome that kind of influence?
BA: Most of YungPatronus was written last year, during which time the whole BADYOSHI clique was performing every other week. I was inspired by a lot of growth and light, and attracted to up tempo sounds I could perform on stage that might get people grooving. I listen to a lot of different music all of the time, but when I'm working on a project I tend to focus in on that sound; however I do pull a lot of influence from the music I listen to, and vibes I'm around in general. I anticipate that this Winter will be a very somber/dark time for my sound.
DMM: What was the relationship between you and and DJ Grumble? What fuels the dedication specifically and where can we see that on the record?
BA: I started working with DJ Grumble back in like 2013 when I first got serious with my writing. His groove was always on point; the "Freestyle Tools" series is what first got me hooked, and I would dig through his beats on Bandcamp and Soundcloud, writing song after song and throwing most of them away. This dedication shifted into a display of bright energy, but every song is produced by Grumbz, and at the end I have a short shout out to him; I freestyled it, it's awful and if I ever do it again, I will prepare something to say.
DMM: You said that during the making of YungPatronus, your mentality became different, and more positive. Describe that change if possible.
BA: My mentality didn't shift so much as my sound went away from the heavier/aggressive tones expressed in "BADYOSHI". The songs on the BADYOSHI album are overall darker vibes; even the song "Lift My Dawgs" my verse is saddened by the loss of a love.
DMM: What does your creative schedule look like? Do you write every day, do you get up early, do smoke a bowl and go somewhere, how often, what are the aspects of your process?
BA: Bogus. I have no consistent schedule, but that is something I've been working on this year. I do set myself to a certain number of hours in the studio each day. Normally six-plus hours everyday I can stay pretty productive. I love background noise; obviously not during tracking, but I normally have an anime playing when I have access to two monitors. The vibe has to be right; the vibe is what creates the product, and regardless what the vibe is, something will be produced.
DMM: I did a write up of Perry Porter's last tape Channel Surfing and I loved all the skits and longer spoken samples. The skit is a lost art it seems like you and your friends (and maybe Frank Ocean?) are trying to resurge. What are some of your favorites in rap history, and why did u think this was something you wanted to see again on rap tapes?
BA: I love the skits on (Outkast’s) Stankonia & ATLiens; more cinematic of a vibe. I wanted to invite listeners into the session just kicking it with Perry (Porter) and folk. Same approach I take on my Basement Tape Mixtape series. Studio Outtakes is what I was going for; you being able to experience us in the studio chilling; that's it. Hip Hop is already bringing skits back; basically every member of TDE has an album with three plus skits on it.
DMM: What drew you to the idea of a Patronus? Do you know what your Patronus is?
While we're on the Pottermore shit, what house do you think you would have been sorted into?
BA: I got the Idea of Patronus after binging Harry Potter start to finish with my woman before she left for Denmark. I thought Patronus, being the focused inner light that can ward off a Dementor, a creature that drains your happiness was a great metaphor. YungPatronus is that inner light; it is the driving internal voice that guides you upward. The Wolf on the cover is YungPatronus; but YungPatronus is the light within us all. I'd of been in Gryffindor training w/ Harry for sure.