*This Interview has been editing for easy reading*
Always good to hear from you, Last time we talked it was deep. Let’s go straight to your days in college. What was your major?
I was that dude who changed his major every year. I was really into architecture & design because I liked to draw. Looking back, I think college was great but it was something my parents pushed me towards. I could have done a lot more if I really wanted to be there, But I didn’t. I was always a creative so I got into architecture & design. It was cool but it was something I didn’t apply myself to cause I didn’t want it. I jumped majors a lot I went from architecture, landscape architecture to graphic design
So you graduated?
yea, I got a degree in design management from ASU. The day I graduated I didn’t even want to walk. I gave my degree to my mom and said this is for you.
I’m still back and forth to LA staying with homies just to make it happen. It’s a grind.
There’s something special about finishing for your mom right?
African parents don’t play about Education man. I’ll leave it at that.
Okay, So at what point did you start fooling with music?
So…my first intro to music was in high school. Like I said I was into art before. It’s Funny how I started to cause my friend gave me a hard drive so that I could get Photoshop. It just so happens that the hard drive contained a copy of FL studios. So I just dove in. I started watching YouTube videos and taught myself. At that point it was just a hobby, Making beats and recording. Eventually, It took a back burner when I got to college. Once I realized I didn’t like the college I got back into the music. At first, it was an escape from class & work. Eventually, I grew to love it, I didn’t have to force myself to do it.
Since I’ve known you, you have always sacrificed things. Tell me about some of the things you’ve had to sacrifice.
It was a lot of that. Time, relationships, experiences. It comes with the territory. So many people want this. Anything great requires sacrifice and I knew that. I Have immigrant parents so all I ever saw growing up was the sacrifice. I was raised that way.
Does it feel life sacrifice?
Sometimes…but I love it. Certain things like the homies going to Mexico for the weekend or missing opportunities to buy things just to fund my career. Even with relationships. It’s hard to maintain a relationship especially with someone who doesn’t understand the industry. There’s a saying that goes “You got to do what they won’t so you can do what they can’t”. I try to live by that.
I knew it was a long and lonely road but I knew on the other side it was going to be worth it.
At what point did you know you were on the right track?
Ahh man, I think when I started seeing people react. Like close friends giving me honest feedback. Telling me this is dope or My brothers and best friends telling me. I could trust them too. They’ll tell me if it’s dope or not. Plus, I loved it so much I saw myself progressing every day. There were always moments of doubt but it was mostly the passion of it that made me out the 10 thousand hours In.
So here you are with a college degree and a chance to make 80 thousand a year but instead, you go to make music. Why is it so important? why not choose money?
Honestly…. I remember seeing my uncle get fired from a job that he worked at for 30 years. Nothing is promised so I rather do what I love and let the money come. We all want nice things, but growing up, my dad could have $1 and he wouldn’t stress about money. We put more value on things that really matter like family. Plus, I always saw myself as an artist. It’s a lot of faith and trust. I think nip said it best. It just comes with having faith and believing in yourself. I knew it was a long and lonely road but I knew on the other side it was going to be worth it.
Do you think you were born with the mindset of an artist?
That was my identity. I was the kid who skipped lunch to draw. Art wasn’t something I did, it’s who I was…still I am.
Who are some artists you’ve worked with?
So I’ve had the opportunity to write for a lot of people. I’ve got some records with some exciting artists too…you’ll be hearing those soon! I’ve performed at BET, opened for Khalid, done my own shows in Hollywood and back home in Phoenix. Producers: TM88, Dem Jointz, The Audibles to name a few…I produce the majority of my music though.
What is it like to be an artist? Honestly?
It’s one of the hardest things in the world. Especially now, because it’s so easy for anyone to be an “artist”. There are so many people that want to be in this industry. And there’s this perception of what an artist is but even the ones who are “successful” are still trying to figure it out. I mean I’m still back and forth to LA staying with homies just to make it happen. It’s a grind. If people knew what it really takes, they would probably think twice. Its 80% shit but the other 20% it’s so rewarding.
So on the flip side is it what we think?
Absolutely not….bro its Hollywood. It’s all cap. It’s all gas. The ones who are winning are the guys with longevity. There’s a lot of money in the industry but you’ve got to look at the guys with really lengthy careers. Most artists are not millionaires. It sucks too because a lot of people get trapped. If you create that identity you’ve got to continue to keep up this image.
Is there anyone you look to as Influences
When I first started it was Kanye. I was a huge fan of College Dropout. He made me want to produce. Ye is a real artist across the board, so I related to that. In college it was J. Cole. I felt our stories had a lot of parallels. On the R&B side, Usher 8701 was the first CD I ever bought. The Dream, Trey, and Chris Brown.
Where did you get this idea of being solo with your music? More Independent if you will.
Well, I have a vision and I want to see it through. I guess part of it came from not wanting to be dependent on anyone. I see guys have to wait for engineers and producers and I never wanted to rely on anyone to create my art. It saved me a lot of headaches.
What’s been the toughest part of your Journey?
A lot of it is just staying faithful to the plan and believing in yourself. There are so many forces telling you that you aren’t good enough or I should do this. But I remind myself that I have what it takes and that I can do this. It’s a self-belief thing.
How do you remind yourself? Do you talk to yourself?
I subscribe to a lot of law of attractions literature.. Like “ask and it is given”, things like that. I constantly try to listen to those things. I’ve seen it happen. I feel like I’m getting better at manifesting the things I want to see in my life. I just try to practice those those Mantras. You just have to do it enough so its habit. So it is autopilot
What’s next for Sab Story?
Man….so right now I’ve got a bunch of singles, visuals, we just shot more visuals so slowly just keep coming with content every two, three weeks. Doing more shows. I really want to deliver a body of work (EP / Album). Just trying to find records to make it special.
Okay seriously, the Last one. How are you avoiding the distractions?
I keep my head down and I try not to look up. The way I see it, the destination is always a moving target. Opportunities I’ve had are great but I know I can go higher. You know, big accolades like a Grammy and such. At its simplest form, it’s just continuing to make really dope music that connects with people and trusting that everything is happening the way it’s supposed to. Sticking to that mission.
Make sure you follow Sab Story on Instagram.