Sky Blu And Mark Rosas: The Culture Brats Interview

Those of you who follow music will already know that the driving forces behind some of the most infectious songs of the past couple of years have set sail on a new venture that sees them coming into their own with two new songs, launching the maiden voyage of a musical artists collective full of talented songwriters, and a whole new look on the future.

Sky Blu and Mark Rosas have been collaborating since the chart-storming and well-loved LMFAO (consisting of Redfoo and Sky Blu) went on indefinite hiatus, and they've been creating some magic of their own.

Hey guys, how are you today?
Sky: What's up, Culture Brats?

I'd like to start out talking a little bit about Big Bad University and the artists collective. Is is a step you always planned to take and ultimately what do you envision for the label and the collective in the future?
Sky: Well you know, it's a creative family and we feed off each other's energy. We really utilize the friendship and the love we have for each other to create great things. You know, without pressure of a business deadline from a label or things like that. It's a real free environment to create stuff. Our goal is to leave this world legends, do you know what I'm saying? To contribute something to the world musically and other creative fields as well. So Big Bad University's real goal is to create great things that bring people together.

Mark: Yeah, it's a real type of illumination I don't think the world has seen in a while.

Whenever I see artists collective I think of people lounging in a field writing poetry and after taking a closer look at what you guys were going for I wondered if it was born out of necessity or was it something you always had in the back of your mind that you might do?
Sky: Well, I think it's a little bit of both. I think that we all found each other at a time in our lives when we really needed the inspiration. I come downstairs... like me and Mark and a few others, we all really live together in a big house and we are always creating. So there is always the opportunity for me to come downstairs or for Mark to come downstairs and be like, "Yo man, what are you working on?" and then I join in and the whole day is gone because we've been working on this song.

So it's more like my original idea than I thought. Everyone together creating in one house. No field. You are together physically as well as musically.
Sky: Exactly.

Mark: Yes.

I've listened to both singles (Sky Blu's "Pop Bottles" and Mark Rosas's "Higher"). "Higher" was produced by you, Mark, and it's co-written with Sky Blu. Both are very good and also earworm infectious. Tell me a little about how each song came about and how you switched in and out of producer and writer roles for each.
Mark: Wow, you want to start?

Sky: Actually, I think that we really just listen to what the song is saying to us. Sometimes we don't go in there with a preconceived idea like "this is what the song is about, this is what it is." It's just whatever sounds good and whatever we feel. It's all about the feeling so "Higher" came out and Mark just started singing on it and it just sounded so great man, so we really kept massaging that feeling on the song.

Mark: I think Sky just happened to be there and he always has so many good ideas ranging from anything like everyday things like landscaping to... whatever. He's such a good person to have around because just his input here and there can really craft something great.

This kind of music has driving beats and high energy making it hugely popular in clubs. How do you translate that when and if you're faced with a live audience? It seems like it could either be magic or fall totally flat?
Both: It's always magic!

Sky: Because the people that come to see us, they want to feel that vibe. They are searching for that feeling and that's what we specialize in giving the people. It really honestly is like we catch the Holy Ghost if we're DJing or if we're performing. We are just so into the music because it's such an honest expression that we created and we really care about our music, like it's art to us, you know? When we are on stage we are really becoming the song. I think people really feel that and that leads to them having great time.

Mark: We have a great time, too.

Sky: We are their excuse to let loose!

That's true. When somebody comes out for a live performance they expect you to hit certain marks and I've seen other people with high energy songs fall flat on stage. I've never heard anything negative about your stage show.
Sky: Thanks. I think that's really what we specialize in to a degree because we are always acting or we're always performing for each other or for a crowd. It's kind of in our nature.

This sort of announced the start of the solo careers for members of LMFAO, who are on hiatus. This puts you all in individually in your own driver's seats. Ten years down the line, what do everyone's careers look like?
Sky: Hey, you know what? I really just hope everybody's extremely successful to the degree that they want to be. Me, it's always something new every day. You know me and Mark, we look at and study quantum physics. So really for us, if I can speak on our behalf, we just want to be able to contribute something to the world to drive the masses to come see the shows and have an experience like no other. We really want to kind of start a little music revolution where people can just create music no matter what it is. As long as it feels great.

So the collective is a way for those artists to do that. Who are some of the other people coming out of Big Bad Collective? Any who you think will join you in the future?
Sky: Of course. Mark, how many people do you think are part of Big Bad Collective now?

Mark: Right now it's a tight group. It's a secret organization! I can't up and out our numbers off hand but we are always looking for new people and there's always people who want to be involved coming in and out for whatever reason. I mean we just hang out with people and they want to be involved and we end up hanging out more eventually. It's so natural that I think the process of working with more and more great people just happens.

I went out and put my finger on the pulse of what all the opinionated people out there are saying about the singles "Pop Bottles" and "Higher". Music critics and others and they've had an overwhelmingly positive reception.
Mark: Huh, good! That's great to hear.

Sky: Great.

It must feel good as collaborators who have both put so much work into both songs and also coming off the success of LMFAO, which was a huge part of your lives. You wonder to yourself, "Are people going to listen?" if we do something without that name attached? But it's being well received.
Mark: It's amazing because we've been working on these songs for so long. Like "Pop Bottles," we've been working on since LMFAO was really booming. And we made that song the same way we always create, just so naturally. We've been preparing to release it for so long so to see it out there and that people actually like it after all that time. We're always worried it's going to run out of time. When the song makes it past that five-month period, we know that it can last a long while.

What is the first music that both of you ever purchased with your own money?
Sky: It had to be NWA. Dad wouldn't let me listen to that cussin' music and when I turned thirteen he said, "Alright, little man. You can listen to some filth!" So I said, Cool, Dad. I'm going to get my NWA. Well, I already got it but it was scratched!" The CD was scratched.

Mark: Oh man! Too bad! I was actually a big rocker dude and I was really getting into guitar and stuff at a young age and so the first CD I ever purchased was Puddle of Mudd.

Get out! "She Hates Me?"
Mark: Puddle of Mudd, baby! That was my rock thing. I was getting into guitar and Nirvana and Green Day and Blink and all these crazy little bands. I mean every band was cool, I didn't care back then.

Can you guys think of a legendary singer or performer you'd be honored to duet with?
Sky: Whoa. Hmm.

Mark: I mean... Michael.

Sky: Yeah, it's got to be Michael. Also maybe Bob Marley.

Mark: Honestly , the whole Rat Pack would be so sick to be in that mix up. To be in that crew, they seem like such cool dudes. Yeah, we would hang out with the Rat Pack if they were alive.

Sky: That's it. That's for sure. Rat Pack.

Mark: They're our kind of people. They were so funny and great to be with.

That show would have to take place in Vegas.
Mark: Well yeah, you gotta be in Vegas. That's where it is!

If you were the organizers of a festival what artists would you put on the bill and what would be the final song you'd all jam to?
Sky: We'd have to do something like that big festival.... What's it called? In the '70s...

Mark: Woodstock!

Sky: There you go. It would be like a Woodstock and I think the grand finale would be all of Big Bad on stage. You know we have a lot of artists like Chelsea Korka, Shwayze, Mark Rosas, and myself and we'd go up there and we'd do some of our songs but we'd have real improvisational sets. Anybody else could come up. Like Paul McCartney, you know what I'm saying? We'd just have that kind of time where you know you had to be there.

I know touring is grueling but do you guys have any long term plans to stay on the road to promote the singles and then the album?
Sky: We just flew back from Chicago and we are going to be coming all around. We will be in Miami in two days. We are trying to hit all the spots but it's mostly on the weekends right now because we are working on the album during the week.

When will the album be out?
Sky: July 4th, that's when my album comes out. Independence Day.

Thank you guys for talking to us today, and hope to see you out there!
Both: Thank you so much!

More Sky Blu: Official | Facebook | Twitter

More Mark Rosas: Official | Facebook | Twitter

More Big Bad University: Official | Facebook

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