Having first begun his career as a deejay in the late ‘70’s, Bigg Robb, who hails from Cincinnati, Ohio, has been engrossed in the music scene ever since.
After initially forging personal relationships with Midnight Star's Reggie Calloway, as well as the Collins’ brothers; Catfish and Bootsy, the Southern Soul Icon would later go on to join forces with the Troutman family, becoming a, now former, member of the legendary group Zapp, in addition to being the late, great frontman, Roger Troutman's own personal assistant.
In 1995, Robb, or as he prefers to be best described, “Best Looking Fat Man in Show Business," embarked on a remarkable solo career with the unleashing of his debut offering, "Cheddar-Cheddar,” and has since released more than 25 albums.
Muzikscribe: Now let’s hop into this single, "Black Woman Magic" — Tell me about this particular track; how did it come to fruition?
Bigg Robb: On most of my previous albums, I have always included a song dedicated to the beauty and sincerity of black women. I wanted a live band sound for “Black Woman Magic,” so I called my son, R3, who is my stage show drummer and my keyboardist, KC Clayton. We were able to catch this vibe that was in my heart! Once I finished writing the music, the lyrics just flowed because the song is based around my relationship with the love of my life but dedicated to all black women.
Muzikscribe: "Black Woman Magic" comes courtesy of your latest solo LP, VINTAGE — Conceptually, what does this title represent both to and for you?
Bigg Robb: “Black Woman Magic” is my way of celebrating the beauty of the black woman. Historically Black Women have magically survived so much and continue to persevere against the odds. Wives work hard to keep their children and husbands inspired. I often think of my mother and sisters who spent more time preparing meals that they didn’t have time to enjoy and making sacrifices for their loved ones at all costs, so the song and video conceptually is a THANK YOU Card from the mind and heart of BIGG ROBB!
Muzikscribe: How then does this body of work either differ and / or compare to previous Bigg Robb entries?
Bigg Robb: Vintage is one of my best bodies of work! I’ve been here for a while and feel the need to stay true to the original soul and funk tones while experimenting with new technology. On the Vintage album, you will find Southern Soul, Classic R&B, Funk and even a New Jack Swing. My fanbase enjoys all those types of music! Vintage; a NO SKIP collection…just put it on and let the BIGG ROBB songs clear your mind and inspire your day or night.
Muzikscribe: As a songwriter, when you sit down to pen your lyrics where do you draw inspiration from?
Bigg Robb: I get inspiration for my songs from everywhere! I’m always writing every day, anytime, and any place. I’m a chameleon, constantly creating from what I see and hear. My fans keep me inspired; I want to write songs that they can relate to and that become a part of their lives.
Muzikscribe: Reflecting, tell me your whole inception into music -- When did you first become interested in it? And, how did it all begin for Bigg Robb?
Bigg Robb: I was born to do music and entertain! By the age of 11, I started as a radio DJ and that progressed into me hanging around with live bands. I become a member of one of greatest funk bands Roger & Zapp, which is where I was really able to learn and grow. Roger Troutman really invested time into making sure I learned the business of music. I am forever grateful to him and the Troutman family for the opportunities to learn my craft and become who the world knows as BIGG ROBB.
Muzikscribe: Now you’re a native of where exactly? And growing up there, who all did / do you consider to be your strongest musical influences?
Bigg Robb: I’m from CINCINNATI, Ohio! All of these legendary names and figures; Bootsy Collins, Catfish Collins, the Calloway brothers, Midnight Star, The Deele, LA Reid, Pennye Ford, Sugarfoot, and The Ohio Players are Cincinnati folks! During my adolescence is where they were at the peaks of their careers, so they became and are still my heroes. Great performers and songwriters who were still accessible to the ‘hood. So I could see them on Soul Train and buying groceries at the store. They were all very patient and encouraging because I always had a lot of questions when they came on my show. LOL!
Muzikscribe: In having said that, how do you classify your overall sound and / or style?
Bigg Robb: My sound and style is just Vintage Grown Folks Muzic. My music is like hot sauce, brown sugar, and toilet paper! Every home should have it!
Muzikscribe: Switching gears here, what exactly do you want people to get from your music?
Bigg Robb: Good vibes, fun times and to embellish the great Mr. Frankie Beverly, HAPPY FEELINGS!
Muzikscribe: If you could collaborate with any one artist, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Bigg Robb: Aww, man, Fantasia because she has so much Soul! I also love to write and produce The Jacksons because I believe they have more hits to make, plus I’m the biggest Jackson 5 fan in the world.
Muzikscribe: If you could play any venue in the world, which one would you choose and why?
Bigg Robb: To be honest, I’ve played Carnegie Hall, The Staples Center, and most of the largest venues around the world. I’ve also played the juke joints and hole in the walls as well, so my motto is Play them all. It’s always fun when I can fellowship with my fans.
Muzikscribe: On a more serious note, are you happy with the current state of Soul music?
Bigg Robb: I’m ecstatic about the music side. It’s so many of us independent musicians and artists, and it’s easier today than ever to get tools to write and create. However, it’s extremely difficult to get press and airplay on commercial radio. I hope in the very near future that we all can get more mainstream opportunities. Thank God for folks such as yourself who recognize our hard work and commitment to our craft. You are SO APPRECIATED!
Muzikscribe: What do you feel has and will continue to be the key to your longevity?
Bigg Robb: Consistency.
Muzikscribe: Do you have any other outside / additional (future) aspirations, maybe even completely away from music?
Bigg Robb: Yes, I’m interested in opening a crematorium, speaking at colleges, and maybe even writing a book.
Muzikscribe: To date, what has been your biggest career moment(s), at least thus far anyway?
Bigg Robb: Everyday my life is a dream come true. I’ve been able to record and work with some of the greatest icons in black music; a lot of the same folks whose album covers I used to hang on my bedroom walls. If I had to chose a specific moment, then it would be performing in Aruba on Sinbad’s Summer Jam! Over 40 million people tuned in to watch our performance on HBO, and I consider that to be a big career moment.
Muzikscribe: What’s an average day like for you?
Bigg Robb: It used to be music, music, MUZIC, but I’m also a husband and a father. I have been blessed to have the unconditional support and love of my family, so I’m learning to talk less and listen more. God whispers to me daily, be anxious for nothing.
Muzikscribe: Please discuss how you interact with and respond to fans...
Bigg Robb: I mostly connect with fans on my @HeyBiggRobb social page and my cell number is included on all my merch and t-shirts. If you still buy CDs, you’ll find my number there, too! Folks call me all the time. So many started out as fans and have become family. I go fishing with my folks, share recipes, and shots of moonshine. They pray for me and I pray for them! The Bigg Robb movement is real!
Muzikscribe: What is your favorite part about this line of work? Your least favorite? And, why?
Bigg Robb: Seeing the smiles on the faces, watching younger people sing and dancing to my songs, along with the elders of the family, at my shows is priceless. I’m vintage, but I want to be able to reach all people. My pet peeve is the gatekeepers who try to define what music can and cannot be mainstream.
Muzikscribe: What advice would you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
Bigg Robb: Get a relationship with GOD and His Son, Jesus. Find your purpose. If I inspire you that’s awesome, use the inspiration to be a better you.
Muzikscribe: Looking ahead, say five or maybe even ten years from now, where do you see yourself?
Bigg Robb: I just want to be healthy and able to bless my loved ones and the world and make the best of everything God has for me. I want to continue to entertain and make the kind of muzic that makes the world feel better!
Muzikscribe: As for the immediate, what's next for Bigg Robb?
Bigg Robb: I’m trying to perfect my Bigg Robb Turkey neck recipe, so I’m on my way to pick up some allspice and curry powder. I’m serving them with mustard greens and candied ginger yams, so I’ll spend the next few hours picking and washing greens and peeling sweet potatoes. So, thanks for the opportunity to share my story! STAY VINTAGE!! I’m outside!!!