“I’ve seen artists come up from nothing without any managers, kind of like what I’m trying to do, and get that contract inked with a major. Those stories inspire me and help me believe I can do it, too.”
Check out the interview with Suga Ray exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
Skilly: Where did this all start? Tell us about your journey in the entertainment business.
Suga Ray: I think it all started way back in grade school listening to old school Hank Williams country music with my grandpa in his truck. Then I discovered rock bands like 3 Doors Down, Linkin Park, and Nickelback as I heard them off the jukebox at the bar. I started writing down the lyrics of their songs on legal pads which in turn got me into writing lyrics of my own.
What would be your biggest piece of advice for the young kids out there trying to do what you do?
What I would say is this: if it’s really what you want to do and if it’s really something you’re realistically good at, don’t ever stop and don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do it. I’m nowhere near stardom, but if you put in the work the baby steps will manifest into something you cannot even possibly fathom.
What are some of the hardest challenges and tasks in your position?
I’d say some of the hardest challenges are the financial expenses and managing time. I’ve had to sacrifice and still sacrifice money that I could be splurging on my personal life. As far as managing time goes, I just feel like trying to run your own music career, especially without a manager, can be difficult or maybe near impossible for some.
We all know the entertainment business is very tough, but what do you find is the best way to promote and advertise your music?
I’ve used Facebook for advertising, individual Twitter promotional accounts, e-mail blasts, etc. I feel like I don’t use the Internet enough though. I hear good things about music blogs so I’m gonna be getting into those shortly. Submitting your music/project to online magazines, newspapers, etc. can help you get some much needed exposure too.
Tell us about your city. How are the artists and the fans?
Pittsburgh’s the greatest city. Its’ produced some well-known names like Wiz Khalifa, Mac Miller, among others. The fans are A1. They’ll pretty much support you as long as you keep doing your thing and dropping dope tunes. I’ve noticed their loyalty and it’s definitely reassuring when you get those “I feel like quitting because it’s so hard” type feels.
Where do you see yourself a year from today?
A year from today I definitely see myself signed to a major label working on my debut album. I’m already getting countless emails from studios and engineers in NY and California that have found me online and want to work with me, help build, my brand and my image, and cater to my music.
Who and what were your biggest inspirations? Who do you look up to in today’s world?
I look up to my family the most in today’s world, but I’m just really inspired by motivated and driven people. I’ve seen artists come up from nothing without any managers, kind of like what I’m trying to do, and get that contract inked with a major. Those stories inspire me and help me believe I can do it, too.
How do you feel about the music coming out today? Do you like it?
Some of the music coming out today I can definitely vibe to. Other stuff coming out is straight garbage. I won’t say names. Lil Uzi Vert has been dropping gems and you really can’t go wrong with some Drake or Future. Drake was a huge influence to me growing up and it’s cool to see what his career has blossomed into.
Where can we contact you and find you online?