Here’s my second interview with Bear Who? aka Fuzzy Cufflinxx. The last time I chat with this original artist from Chicago was in 2015. Once again, he gave me the opportunity to discover his new music project and brought me up to date on his most recent releases and future plans. An interesting conversation you can read below!
1 – We have always known you as Bear Who? – When did you start to use your artistic name Fuzzy Cufflinxx? Why?
Fuzzy Cufflinxxx. The artist side of things. It’s a feeling I get when I’m in the booth. This energy. I let him do his thing. Bear Who? is the DJ and boss. Fuzzy is the funk at the party. Loves the mic and spotlight. I have always been good on the mic. I’ve recorded with a lot of the best in the Electronic game. When we released “Fix My Sink” (Credence), it was supposed to be Fuzzy Cufflinxxx, not Bear Who?….. My release on Cross Section UK was titled “The Birth of Fuzzy Cufflinxxx”… Not a new thing to people that have followed me. Younger cats see it as a new artist. The vocals are real and the vibe is always on 100%.
2 – Are you still focused on House music? What does House music mean to you?
I Love House. I’m from Chicago, it’s part of my DNA. I’m influenced by all my surroundings. Hip Hop, Reggae, Salsa, Rock, Electronic… It all goes in there. When I get the drums, mic, kick and hat going; we will see where it goes. I always have my own vocal somewhere in a track. House has the soul. Even if it’s just a hat and kick, it has to fit and you know it’s House. As a DJ, if you rep Chicago, you better be good and know what you’re doing. That’s one thing that I hold high, as a Chicago OG. If you say you’re a Chicago House DJ, you better be able to back it up. I’m not humble about that.
I’ve recorded and spun with the greatest of Techno. I play and make Moombahton, I could ride with anyone. Just give me the best of the best. I’m focused on good songs, great collabs, and my own beats. If it’s a mean track I’m on it. I’m so into good music that I can take elements from anywhere, samples you couldn’t even recognize.
3 – What’s the latest track you are currently promoting? Where can we stream to it?
I have two projects out now. One with James Curd (Greenskeepers) and another with Todd Terry.
“Bring Back the Whoop” on Classic. James dropped a savage track to my vocals. We have known each other a long time, Both Chicago brothers. I love working with him. We have worked together before and we have another song dropping on Sense Traxx UK. “Balloon Talk”. We have Junior Sanchez and Made By Pete remixes. Lots of love. It’s on Traxsource, Beatport, iTunes.
Todd Terry beats and Fuzzy on the mic. Easy. We are both heavily influenced by Hip Hop, so it’s easy to collab on a nyc vs chi town hip house track. “You Can’t Stop House” a Todd Terry classic track with my vocals. Just let it play and beat it up. Crowds dig it. I know Todd and some of the other heads beat it up in Miami. Todd and I have worked on collabs before. This is my 3rd release on InHouse. It’s on Traxsource, Beatport, iTunes and Spotify.
4 – How easy or difficult was to produce a track with the legendary Todd Terry?
Todd and I have known each other for a minute. I respect him highly. He is definitely a legend, but a homie as well. He has remixed my music before and this is my 3rd release on his label “InHouse”. We work well together since we come from the same sound and styles. The New York/Chicago vibe is on point with our music. House, Hip Hop, Freestyle… we both run like that. So when Todd sends you a beat, you fight fire with fire. I let Fuzzy do his thing with the vocals. He knows that I can deliver.
Fun, real, and different. I’ve dropped a lot of music throughout my career. If you haven’t heard it, go take a listen. Take a look and Enjoy. ..
I am a fan as well. Green Velvet, A-Trak, CocoDrills, The Martinez Bros, Major Lazer, they can hold it down hard. Loco Dice as well. Mad love to these dudes. Live shows are too sick.
6 – What songs are coming in the near future? Are you already preparing new stuff or more collaborations?
I have two new projects.
“The Real” on S&S records. That’s with my homies from Spain “Zonum and Albert Retamero”. We are dropping a club Hip House style track on Steve “Silk’ Hurley’s label. It’s crazy to be working with Steve Hurley. He blessed the song with a nasty Remix. That will be a nice project.
and “Balloon Talk” with James Curd (Sense Traxx). This track is crazy. After “Bring Back The Whoop” this 1 is going to hit it nicely. The Junior Sanchez Mix is bananas.
I’m always down to collab. If it’s dope, bring it. Diplo & Major Lazer would be ill to work with…
7 – How do you promote yourself these days?
Have to put in work. You have to have a team. It takes effort and strategy. But at the end of the day, you have to have good music. Instagram and Snapchat are fun. Not going to lie. People say the are too cool for it. I use it. If you look for Fuzzy Cufflinxxx / Bear Who? you’ll find me.
8 – Are you concentrating more on being an artist than a DJ?
I am working on a full live show. Not just as a DJ anymore but a full show experience. Time to make it visual…
I’m always working on something. Even if I’m not in the lab. There is always a project up on the computer and I add to it every day. Always vocals to cut or beats to make.
10 – If you could change one thing in the music industry, what would it be?
There is a lot of music. I’d like to see more collabs and more diversity. I know that House is really making a comeback to good music.
More To Discover: Additional Insights Into Rubayne’s EP ‘Connections’
Don’t miss out on rising artist Rubayne’s new EP ‘Connections,’ a blend of genres he calls Bass Pop exploring the ups and downs of love. With a special live performance airing on February 24th and music videos planned, it’s an EP not to be missed. Read the interview to learn more.
1 — What is the main theme you explore in your new EP ‘Connections’?
The EP is a set of eclectic love stories that are connected to each other. Throughout the EP, you will discover the feeling of falling in love, being in love, and holding on to love in the toughest time.
2 — Is there any special meaning behind its title?
There are multiple. Firstly, the titles of the songs relate to each other. In addition, I made a stronger connection with my music by involving myself in the songwriting as well.
3 — Did you collaborate with other artists or producers on this project?
Yes. There are a couple of great singers involved with ‘Connections’! Some new, some I do know from the start. I must give credit and big ups to Romy Dya, Yunnee, EthanUno, and Ansaly for their amazing work.
4 — How did you go about crafting the overall sound and style?
The approach for creating ‘Connections’ was different in comparison to my regular creative approach. With each project, I first focused on selecting a main instrument that would characterize the song. Unattainable has the guitar, “Connections” has the bass, and “In Love Tonight” has the piano. After the main instrument and its melody, I would carve out the full production.
I had not, but I focused on having a blend of genres that I and the love theme associate with. I would say this blend of genres can be best described as Bass Pop.
6 — Is there a particular track on the EP that you have a special connection with?
Nope! They are equally special to me and as they complement each other, I feel that I have a special connection with the project as a whole.
7 — Are there any things you wish you had done differently?
When it comes to the EP, there’s nothing I wish I had done differently.
8 — In what ways do you think your songs will resonate with listeners?
I think this project, as well as other songs I have made, encourages its listeners to open up and acknowledge their feelings. I hope my music provides the listeners with a better understanding of themselves.
9 — Have you ever considered creating a music video for any of these news tracks?
I did! I feel like each of the songs has a visual story to tell. However, I have prepared something special for this EP which is visually pleasing as well.
10 — Is there anything else you would like to share about the EP that we haven’t covered in this interview?
To celebrate the release of ‘Connections,’ I recorded a live performance of the EP with all the vocalists and an amazing guitarist (Rob). It will air on February 24th and you can get notified here.
CONNECT WITH RUBAYNE NOW!
Discovering Lucii’s Musical Journey And Her New Song “Narcissist”
In this exclusive interview, Lucii shares more about her journey as a musician, the meaning and inspiration behind her new single “Narcissist,” and her plans for the future, including incorporating a live band into her performances and releasing a new album.
1 — How did you first become interested in music and what led you to pursue it as a career?
So I always sang and made songs on guitar as I was growing up but never thought I was good enough. I went to a rave at 17 and really loved it so I started DJing and producing and started to use my vocals on my tracks and it turned into a career!
2 — As a member of the LGBTQ community, how do you feel your identity influences your songs?
I feel like Idk I just write songs about girls, but I think cause I’m female writing about a female gives this extra sparkle of divine femininity.
3 — How do you aim to use your artistic platform to uplift and inspire others in the community?
I just want to make people feel something, music is a form of expression sometimes easier than talking. Mac Miller helped so much with my mental health and I just wanna be that to someone. Make people not feel alone, especially the LGBTQ community.
4 — Please tell us more about the meaning and inspiration behind your new single “Narcissist.”
I was in therapy and was describing this person to my therapist and she said (her name is Andrea and I shout her out in the song) “well that person sounds like a Narcissist” I NEVER heard of that word in my life so I started writing that night “you’re a Narcissist says my therapist” and that’s how it came about. I just wanted an angry song about a Narcissist so I made it.
Probably “thank god for Andrea I should send the bill to ya for all the times I’m in the chair wondering how I got here” Andrea is my therapist and I just think that’s a BA.
6 — How has your experience been as an electronic music producer and how has that influenced your shift into the Pop genre?
I feel like it influenced my Pop music a lot because I want my songs to have energy even if they’re sad, I want that emotional wave rollercoaster to feel like dance music gives.
7 — Are you planning to incorporate a live band into your performances?
YES!! I cannot wait to start playing with my band. I can’t wait to be closer to my audience and just play my songs, that is my dream and I can’t wait to do that soon hehe.
Details on the upcoming album will be announced soon.
9 — What message would you like to send to aspiring LGBTQ musicians looking to break into the industry?
I would say just fucking go for it we NEED you. Look at fletcher she is breaking boundaries right now she is a full-on amazing Pop star and watching her grow has just been so inspiring and made me realize I can do this, I can make the move from being a DJ to being a live performance act.
10 — How do you see your music evolving in the future?
I see myself going through eras, I really love how Taylor Swift each of her albums feel like a chapter to read from ‘1989’ to ‘REPUTATION’ and OMG ‘Folklore.’ All of them are AMAZING but I just want to give that feeling with every one of my albums, as you listen to it and you’re transported back in time to a feeling.
CONNECT WITH LUCII NOW!
Exploring An Experimental Album With XENOBYT — Interview
Are you a fan of electronic music with a hint of nostalgia and horror? Look no further, as XENOBYT‘s new album ‘Nine Nights In The House Of Harrow’ is exactly what you’ve been searching for. In this exclusive interview, the up-and-coming artist gives you an inside look at the inspiration and creative process behind his original work.
1 — How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard it before?
I try to make music that people can vibe to. Something you can put on and get lost in while driving or doing something mundane. There is something fascinating about using a synthesizer, which for a long time was considered the sound of the future, but using it to make music that reminds us of the past. I like to think that if you like Horror and synth music and enjoy the groove of the song over the technicality of what’s played, you would enjoy what I am trying to do here.
2 — Which artists are you most influenced by?
When I was younger, I was a huge Metalhead, but my dad was a big tech geek and loved messing around with a synthesizer and listened to a lot of Kraftwerk and Giorgio Moroder. So I had an early appreciation for it. I was big into Horror movies and really dug the soundtracks that John Carpenter was doing, and Brad Fiedel’s Terminator 2 soundtrack was another of my favorites. But I didn’t decide to start making this kind of music until I heard Carpenter Brut and Perturbator for the first time.
3 — What drew you to the experimental genre and what sets it apart from other electronic music styles?
I went to college for sound design, so I love taking a sound that people are familiar with and messing with it to make something completely new. And I try to incorporate that into my music in ways that aren’t done very often. Classifying yourself as experimental kind of takes the chains off and resets expectations of what your fans expect to hear when they listen to your music.
4 — What inspired the title of your new album ‘Nine Nights In The House Of Harrow’?
Usually, I come up with a simple horror theme for an album before I even start writing the songs for it. The last album, New Retro Witch, was about witchcraft and this album was about malevolent spirits. The concept of getting hired for a certain time to caretake a haunted mansion resonated with me and the things I had going on in my life at the time. I was facing a lot of old trauma I had buried and this concept paralleled with what I was dealing with in my own head, so I based the title of the album around that idea.
5 — How does this material differ from your previous works?
I wanted this album to be heavier than my last album from the start. I wanted to incorporate more Rock and Metal vibes into it but keep some of the same beauty and melancholy that I really liked about New Retro Witch.
Because of the more personal nature of this album, I didn’t really do any big collaborations on it, which is something I normally try to do.
6 — How long did it take you to complete this project?
I started working on this album in the Spring of 2021 and had 9 songs written for this album by the end of summer, but I wasn’t happy with it and scrapped all but 3 songs. I kind of fell into an artistic rut after that and sat on it until February of 2022 and wrote, mixed, and mastered the remainder of the album over the spring and summer.
7 — Could you tell us where ‘Nine Nights In The House Of Harrow’ was recorded?
I have my own recording studio here in Austin and I did all of the writing, mixing, and mastering for this album there.
8 — How did you approach the design of the artwork?
During that artistic rut I had mentioned earlier, I got really enthralled in AI Art Generation and went as far as learning how to and coding my own AI Art Generator. I made a bunch of stuff with it that actually helped inspire me to finish the album. While I am a big fan of collaborating with other artists, I was really proud of the fact I made this art-making machine and how it helped me get back on my grind. I wanted to showcase what it was capable of with this release.
“Deluge,” because there is a sad and dark story behind it. I suffer from depression and PTSD and had a bit of a mental breakdown last summer. That song was created live while I was in the midst of that breakdown. I felt like I was drowning, and I wanted the song to sound like I felt. But I also wrote the song I wanted to hear to feel better, and it worked. I still put it on when I am feeling depressed, and it still makes me feel better.
10 — Are you open to collaborations? If so, what are the requirements?
Absolutely! I am always open to collaborating with other artists. My only requirement is ensuring proper credit is given to everyone involved.