Two Rhode Island rappers, known as Young Bagz and Young Scholar, have a new video to share with the masses, but this isn’t their first rodeo. Young Bagz and Young Scholar, known together as Y.B.S, have been working together since they were in high school. In the early days, they recorded a ton of songs, but never released them because they didn’t feel that we were ready to come out to the public.
But they are more than ready now.
They are excited to share their new single, The Toast, which is off their newest mixtape T.Y.C. Vol. 1. Never heard of the duo but want to know more? Don’t worry, I spoke to the two young men exclusively for TwentyTweets. Get to know the talented Y.B.S, their music, and check out what else will be in store for Y.B.S.
Brittni: So let’s get down to the basics. What brought you two together?
Y. Scholar: We started back in high school, we were 16. It’s interesting, my brother had a studio in the house where he recoreded local artists in Rhode Island. During his off times, I would use it to record myself. One day, Young Bagz came to the house to hang out. He noticed there was a studio and told me to put a on beat so he could step in the booth. I honestly thought he was joking, because he was known to always joke around. I actually had no idea he rapped! The beat played and I heard a completely different person! I was blown away. When he came out, all I said was “you gotta come here every day from now on; we need to work together.”
Y. Bagz: We’ve known each other for a very long time. Scholar moved in with my family when he came from New York around the age of 7, and we always had that brotherly connection. At first we would play around with music, just rapping about things we saw on an average day, but we began to seriously work together back in 2007. As we were getting ready to make the move to URI, we decided to take what we learned and incorporate it in our music and be heard.
BH: How did you guys come up with your unique monikers?
YB: My stage name is a nickname that was given to me back in high school. My brother was a senior when I entered so I was viewed as his “mini me,” to say the least. His friends would catch me in the hallways chatting it up with some lady friends here and there and they would shout, “He’s bagging it! Bagz, What’s good son?” Eventually it stuck with me.
YS: I struggled with a name. That wasn’t my focus, anyway. I just figured it would come to me, which it did. Battling between courses in college and rapping, I was so caught up with it to the point I was almost viewed as anti-social. Then I remembered one of my boys kept calling me a “scholar.” So I took that and ran with it. Our names combined create our duo title, giving you Y.B.S.
BH: When did you start working on the video? Where did the shoot take place?
YS: We started shooting the video in mid-February, with our director Sam Albert’s guidance, (www.lifeisdreams.com). The rooftop scene was shot in downtown Providence. I really liked that scene because I literally saw the whole east side of Providence and the bridge that crosses from downtown to the Thayer side.
YB: With Sam Albert’s help, we came up with the concept and tried our best to match the visual with the sound and feel of the song so our listeners would be able to easily connect with with the message.
BH: Did anyone else work with you on this project? How did it affect the concept of the song?
YB: Crucial sent us two beats for the T.Y.C. Vol 1 mixtape. I picked The Toast to work on, while Scholar thought of the concept to the second beat, Land Of The Free. I meditated on it for some time before creating the concept. I thought of the times that me and all the boys would always sit together, discussing where we want to be after college. I felt that the beat was pointing me in the direction of writing about where we were at that time, our future goals, and how we were driven by one another to get there. I told Scholar my idea, gave him the hook, he laughed, shook my hand, and got to writing.
BH: What do you want listeners to take from this song/video after listening/viewing?
YS: We would like our listeners to grasp our views and mission in life, which is to accomplish the goals we have before us with the limited time we have here. At the same time, we want them to be able to connect their own experiences with ours, because face it everyone wants to be successful and live their dreams with the friends that they struggled with from the beginning.
BH: How does working together on projects affect your relationship with each other?
YB: It’s like there’s a push we give one another in all sorts of ways. I get fueled when I hear Scholar rap from the heart and project what he had in his mind into the flow that we vibe to. I also like the slight competition between us; it’s similar to sibling rivalry and it motivates us to both perform at the best of our abilities. If I don’t like something I let him know and vice versa. We have grown so much from the criticism we have for each other, it’s more real (brutal at times, but real). We always aim for perfection, so we really give each other constructive criticism. It also makes us grow as individuals, as well as a group.
BH: How are you guys promoting your project?
YS: We been all over different blog sites including Sorry4TheBlog, Nervejaer, Rudeboyy, and of course TwentyTweets! We also use social networks and the support from our loyal listeners to help us promote. Shout out to them! Thanks for all the support; that’s love and we always appreciate it.
BH: What can we look forward to from Y.B.S in the future?
YS: Our future goals are to take this career path further with persistence. A label push is potentially in the future but who knows. But seriously, we have been doing this for years, we take our work seriously. Right now we are trying to gain more of an audience, as we take time to perfect our craft. We see a lot of great artists in the industry that produce a lot of music and it just motivates us to rise in that bracket. Even in our state, as small as it is, we have a great amount of talent running around (A big shout goes out to them). I think our work ethic is tremendous right now and it will pay off.
Now let’s Toast to the success of these two up-and-coming Rhody rappers. Cheers!
For more on Y.B.S and their upcoming endeavors, visit their website.
P.S.: It should also be noted that both Young Scholar AND Young Bagz were roommates of mine during my senior year at our alma mater URI! 🙂