Vallejo, California doesn’t normally register on the radars of most people.
But if you are a true fan of hip hop, specifically the West Coast scene, then you know the area and its varied cast of characters.
Some better known artists from the area include E-40 & Mac Dre.
And now producer turned artist, Doc Savage, would like to play a part in putting the city on the map in a big way.
Born Brandon Joseph Galbraith, the 25-year-old Savage is highly regarded in the music industry as a producer but is relatively unknown as an artist.
Doc Savage holds a business degree and is a self-professed lover of all aspects of art.
And I had the honor of interviewing this modern-day Renaissance man.
The Candy Shoppe: When did you start producing music?
Doc Savage: I started producing in 2003 during my senior year of high school. Beatman (1/3 of The Corporation) got me interested in production and since then I’ve been running with it.
The Candy Shoppe: So what made you decide to make that change from producer to artist?
Doc Savage: My manager, Darius, convinced me to be an artist. I never wanted to rap or sing or anything like that. I’m shy and I like being behind the scenes. However, D is a pretty convincing person. So I started demoing ideas for my beats and it evolved from that into full-fledged artistry.
The Candy Shoppe: Do you feel that being a producer impacts your career as an artist?
Doc Savage: Being a producer gives me another aspect of music. I can use the things I know about production to help with writing and mixing.
The Candy Shoppe: Who are some of your musical inspirations/influencers? Hip Hop inspirations?
Doc Savage: Wow, there are quite a few. I don’t listen to the radio much. I listen to a lot of Ben folds, Steely Dan, Fred Hammond, Michael Jackson, Prince, OK Go, John Mayer, Jazmine Sullivan, Fall Out Boy, Brandy, Panic! At The Disco, Electric Light Orchestra, The Isley Brothers, Amy Winehouse, Sara Bareilles, Dru Hill’s older music…Of course a lot of artists from Vallejo. My city made me…A lot of different things. As for Hip Hop it would be DJ Quik, Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Mac Dre, Timbaland, Jay-Z, Method Man & Redman, Hi-Tek…The list goes on. I could name people forever but that is a good start.
The Candy Shoppe: Now those are some very diverse artists and genres. That being said, did you have a favorite album for 2010?
Doc Savage: It would be hard to put something above Kanye’s “MBDTF.” *If y’all don’t know how I feel about Kanye, check this out*
The Candy Shoppe: What do you feel you add as a producer and artist to the Hip Hop landscape?
Doc Savage: Definitely a new perspective. I think I can attack all types of subject matter and make it easy for people to relate to. But, at the same time I say something that you may be thinking but can’t put into words.
The Candy Shoppe: Are you currently signed to a label?
Doc Savage: I’m currently with CEG (Casico Entertainment Group). I chose CEG because I believe in the direction of the label and the people behind it. I put a lot of thought and time into every business decision I make and everything about CEG led me to believe it would be the best fit.
The Candy Shoppe: I also hear you are the new VP of A&R for CMP, Inc. (Courtney Marie Productions, Inc.). Congratulations. So what do you look for specifically in a new artist?
Doc Savage: Thank You. In an artist, I look for the normal things like natural talent, the ability to adapt and learn new things, a vibrant personality, etc. Aside from observing the regular attributes, I ask myself questions about how the artist works, how he/she reacts in high pressure situations and other questions I think determine whether or not investing in a particular artist is the right move.
The Candy Shoppe: In your opinion, what sets CMP, Inc. apart from other Indie Labels?
Doc Savage: We’re different in that we look at everyone involved with our group as family. We make educated group decisions and work toward long-term goals. We don’t just help people with talent and release music. We change lives for the better and create amazing works of art.
The Candy Shoppe: Doc in light of all your current responsibilities. How do you plan to juggle it all?
Doc Savage: I love all aspects of art, including the business side. I have a business degree. I’m used to wearing a lot of hats and juggling different tasks, so it won’t be a problem. With music, I produce, write, record, engineer, program, along with pretty much anything else I forgot. Doing that and handling an A&R role won’t be a huge burden because I’m around all aspects of the music side, so I can evaluate talent while I create or oversee creation. As far as priority, quality of product comes first, then everything else. The day I stop caring about putting 100% into the music is the day I walk away from the art.
The Candy Shoppe: Speaking of art. When can we expect the release of your album “Therapy”?
Doc Savage: I don’t have a specific release date, but it’ll probably be sometime late this year.
The Candy Shoppe: I was blessed with 2 of your tracks, “Go” and “What I Learned In College”. What are your plans for promoting them?
Doc Savage: We’ve been focusing on a lot of social networking. I have Facebook, twitter, tumblr and a website that we’ve been trying to spread the word about.
The Candy Shoppe: One last question. If you could pick a song as the theme to your life, what would it be?
Doc Savage: Probably, “Requiem For A Dream.” I wouldn’t want anything with words. Words couldn’t sum up the constant changes I go through.
For a taste of Vallejo, Doc Savage style, check out Doc’s track “GO” and tell me what you think:
For more information on Doc Savage visit his website at: www.docsavmusic.com
Follow him on Twitter: http://twitter.com/doctheproducer
Friend him on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/doctheproducer