Mullage Is Coming Fast and Heavy – A ‘Who’s Next’ Interview

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Watch your heads because coming fast and heavy out of Atlanta is a musical duo known as Mullage. Their Musical collage includes sounds from rap to R & B to Hip-Hop and beyond. Their recently released single Trick’n has already had nearly 13 million plays on their MySpace page and according to Mullage, it’s only the beginning. We recently sat down with B Town and B Boi for a Mullage interview.

Parlé: You both grew up in Atlanta, but didn’t meet until you were both in the Navy. Talk to me about both the similarities and differences in your childhoods.
B Boi: I came up more on the west side of Atlanta. I wouldn’t say we were poor poor but we weren’t the most fortunate kids around. My mother and step-father were parents that really just went out of their way to make a way for a family.
B Town: My mother, she moved around a lot. I was raised on the south side of Atlanta, but I’ve lived everywhere. She was a single parent taking care of us, and locked me in on music.

Parlé: So explain your reasons for joining the Navy. Were you joining the military for a military career or did you have musical aspirations already and saw the military as a possible springboard to success?
B Boi:
Well, basically, I was a young African-American male and I was looking for a way out of what an African-American male is used to, which is being in his neighborhood and his community and not really being productive. My mother really wasn’t having that so right after high school she decided if I wasn’t going to college, I was either going to be in the Navy or in the Corps. So she took me down to the Navy office and that’s how I got started.
B Town: At the time I was going to school, but it was costing me $26,000 a year to go to school so it just came to a point and time where I couldn’t afford it anymore. So, my mother was basically telling me I had to do something so I went out here and joined. I actually signed up and left for the Navy in a two-week period. It was an opportunity for me to do something outside of school but if I wanted to go back to school I could pay for it, so it was a step up.

Parlé: I understand that you two were on different ships in the Navy. How did you meet and what was it about one another that drew you together?
B Boi: We actually met through a mutual friend who shared the same dream as us. He’s no longer with us. He goes by the name Jordy “JCool” Lambert. He introduced us when we were both in the military on separate boats. At the time, I was in the middle of constructing my first solo project. JCool brought B Town into the label halfway through the construction of it and it clicked from the first session. He ended up on like 10 out of the 20 songs after coming in halfway through the completion of my project. The chemistry, the vibe, and the type of work we put in, it was unbelievable. It was undeniable and the people around us heard our sound and eventually talked to us and let us know we’ve got a good sound together, collectively, and we should do the group thing. But us being individuals and stubborn and headed down our own career paths we didn’t see it through at the time. After a couple more records and a lot more time together, we decided to make it official as of December of the year before last.
B Town: Although we didn’t like each other at first (laughs).

Parlé: So you left the military to pursue careers in music. I haven’t had a career in either music production or the military so I’m curious if you’ve noticed similarities in the two career paths. If so, explain them to me.
B Town: I think artists have this stereotype that they’ll never be on time and the military helps you out in that sense for you to understand how important it is to get to certain things. Just being prompt and being on time is the biggest thing the military helped me out with.
B Boi: I’ve noticed a lot about both of us from being in the military, like when it’s time to get the work done and when it’s time to focus on the object at hand, deadlines, or whatever the case may be. We’re real headstrong when it comes to sitting down, getting the work done, and making things happen.

Parlé: So now tell me about the name Mullage. I get that it’s a combination of the words “Music” and “Collage” but explain the inherent dynamics of the two words, and how the blend of the words describes your style of music.
B Town: Basically, the definition is: two forces engaged to create a musical collage. B Boi and myself, we have two different styles but once you combine the two together, you get something that’s hard to clone. We had the opportunity to meet Andre 3000 and that’s something he said that he and Big Boi had together. They know they’re capable of having their own solid careers and they can make things happen by themselves but there’s just something totally different about when they make music together. That’s what it’s about.

Parlé: So together, “B Town” and “B Boi” make up Mullage. Explain the stage names and their origins.
B Boi: My stage name came from me being the new student at the school and being the new dude around. Nobody knew me, nobody knew my name, so everybody would just call me the black boy (laughs). I just took what they said and shortened it up and made it B Boi.
B Town: B Town came from my first name, Braelon. I was dancing before I was making music and they used to say that I was dancing like I was from “B-Town”, D.C. I’m guessing people used to call D.C., “B-Town”, I’m not sure if they still do, but it just kind of stuck with me.

Mullage Interview B Boi
B Boi

Parlé: Who did each of you look up to as musical inspirations growing up? And also, who do you still admire today as an artist? I’m interested in both the Mullage hometown heroes from Atlanta as well as your inspirations from elsewhere.
B Boi: Coming up, I listened to a lot of Outkast, Bone Thugs ‘N Harmony, and I listened to a lot of R&B like R. Kelly. A lot of the southern rappers that came before us just paved the road for us. Those that came before us were the pioneers of Hip-Hop; they made it possible for us to do what we do today. Any artist that has put the South or Atlanta on the map has made my job a whole lot easier than it has to be.
B Town: I’ve been influenced by a lot of people that aren’t mainstream. There have been a lot of people that have helped me because I’m really big into neo-soul and lots of different types of music. Overall, I would definitely have to say Andre 3000. It’s just the way he’s able to tell a story, he’s very unique and always has been. But as of lately, it’s actually been Jay-Z. I didn’t become a Jay-Z fan until this last album but there’s something about the way he did it on this album that’s so relatable.

Parlé: Talk to me about your level of success so far compared to your expectations. Your song Trick’n has almost 13 million plays on your MySpace page. Do you feel like you’ve made it, or more like there’s still a large mountain in front of you to climb as musicians?
B Boi: I would say that anyone that’s dropped a single and feels like they’ve made it should be punched in the chest (Laughs). You know what I mean? If you feel like you’ve made it off one song, it’s definitely not anything. We have so much to prove as artists, collectively as well as individuals. Our expectations are way higher than one single. We’re here to make history and five years from now we want to be the most talked-about group in hip-hop. So, one single isn’t going to get us there and our expectations are through the roof. You wouldn’t believe how much pressure we put on ourselves – it’s crazy. But at the end of the day, that’s what we do it for. We do it for the fans and for the love of the music.

Parlé: From an outsider’s perspective, I see your music as a blend of smooth grooves and R & B with a touch of Dirty South-style rap sprinkled throughout. Tell the Mullage interview readers about your music from the inside, what kind of music do you see it as?
B Town: I just see it as relatable music. Outside of the genre that it is, we just like to talk about relatable things. You’re not going to hear us talk about something that we haven’t done or something that we don’t have, so we basically just talk about what we experience on a daily basis. I think our music is heartfelt and whenever we touch different genres like R & B or Southern Pap, that’s how it’s going to be, but it’s more the topics that we focus on, not the style. How we do it, it comes across very naturally; it’s just whatever that particular track calls for.

Parlé: One of the advantages that singers and musicians have today is the ability to use the internet for a marketing tool. Can you talk to me about how you’ve used to web to both create a fan base and promote your music?
B Boi: We use the internet a lot, man. The internet is so instrumental in our success, it’s crazy. We’re on Twitter 24/7 talking to the fans and communicating with them and that’s always a pleasure when you get to reach out and touch the people that actually consume your music. It’s widened our fan base a whole lot quicker than we could have ever imagined. We’re able to reach people you’ve never even seen in places you’ve never even been with the internet, so it will always be an important marketing tool for Mullage.
B Town: I think it’s a big reason we’re still relevant today with the record labels being the way they are today. Sometimes you just have a situation where your counterpart might be scared to take a risk. We’ve had people reach out to us based off what we’ve done personally, like our free album Elevators that we released, so it’s just about relationships that we’ve built with the internet and it’s been really big for us.

Mullage interview B Town
B Town

Parlé: What can we expect from B Town and B Boi of Mullage in 2010 as far as a tour and new singles or a new album?
B Town: We’ll just continue to get better and grow as artists and we’ll be releasing another mixtape right before our debut album entitled The Element of Versatility, so that’ll be something we’re doing for the fans. We’ll just continue to give the people a wide variety of music. We do see ourselves at the BET awards this year, nominated and basically winning the category. It sounds crazy to some but when you walk by faith and you feel like you’ve got the talent to be there, there’s really nothing that anybody can tell you otherwise. Coming out of the Navy, I think that’s what has helped us get this far and will help us make it to where we’re trying to go.

Parlé: It’s obvious that you have lots of similarities and must be like-minded in many ways in order to successfully collaborate and create music together on a regular basis. However, I’m also interested in what unique traits you each bring to the group.
B Town: One of us is always doing more than the other, like when one of us needs a little extra push, the other is going to be able to provide that. When something needs to get done, both of us might not be headstrong on that subject, but it never takes both of us to get that push to get things done. One of us might be in the studio on the east side of town and the other on the west side of town and we can get work done like that. Another thing I’ve noticed about us is our work ethic and how we work together. I’ve been around many musical groups in the experiences that I’ve had and I haven’t really met a lot of dudes in a lot of groups that work like us. We never have to worry about the other person not bringing it or being productive and we’re always there for each other. You’ve got to have that bond past the music if you even want to consider greatness.
B Boi: Sometimes we take what one of us says, and how the other one says it. One of us may have more delivery on one track, or one of us might be able to give you more of a visual, so we work together like that.

Parlé: Talk to me about drive. If you’re a car, what is your fuel that keeps you going each day and keeps the fire burning inside that makes you want to rise higher in your field as singers and songwriters?
B Boi: My drive, personally, is my life and the people I have around me. I have the will to want to see them do better and want to do better myself, period. The lifestyle that people have that live around me is enough to make me want to get out there every day and be better and make better music. Seeing a lot of the music that’s out here today and having good music to turn to is so important. You’d be surprised how important music is to people in their lives so the ability to make music and make more, greater music is enough to drive me every day.
B Town: My drive is just the passion that I have for the music and knowing that out of everything I’ve done, be it school or whatever, it’s always brought me back to the music. So, I feel as though that’s what I was put here to do. At the end of the day, without getting too deep, I feel like it’s what God wanted me to do. So for us to walk away from it or to just to give up when things aren’t going the way we want them to – we wouldn’t be doing his work. When you know something, when you just know you have it, it’s just all about proving it and everything happens in due time. It’s something that you just feel.

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