Where are you based?
ATL, but “based” is a really important word here.
Where do you work? What do you do?
Storytelling is at the core of what I do. My company, Roycebee Creative specializes in brand partnerships and original productions. Our partnership work is primarily with mid-to-large scale live events (conferences, music festivals, launch parties, pop-ups, etc.) so I’m always into knowing what’s buzzing in the live-event space. We’ve worked with companies like Toyota, Google, Soundcloud, Sprite, Crown Royal, and Squarespace to create some really cool moments. We also have two original productions that we created and manage, Sweet Auburn Stories, a cross-generational storytelling series about Black American history, and Not Here Right Now, a one-man show about my insane 5-month backpacking trip to Southeast Asia.
What are you listening to?
- Amber Mark
- Lady Gaga’s latest album Chromatica is on repeat. It’s the summer dance album that I didn’t know I needed.
- Kindness ‘Cry Everything’
- Anything with Smino
- Drake, Givon – Chicago Freestyle
- Trippie Redd’s latest album “A Love Letter To You 4”
- Bruce Springsteen
How do you discover new music?
I’m always trying to figure out ways to discover new music. I’m that guy that is always listening in clothing stores, restaurants, people’s cars, hotel lobbies… TV shows are a great way to find new music as well, people are paying a LOT of attention to placements on TV. I’m deep into Spotify playlists based on my direct action (“Working From Home”) and Rap Caviar. Soundcloud, obvi. A really good iMessage thread with people that I know from around the globe. It’s great to see what’s buzzing in different corners of the world. Lastly, the best radio station in the world, ‘Eclectic 24’ by KCRW.
What formats do you usually listen to? LP, CD, Cassette, Digital, Streaming Services? Why?
I wanna be that LP, Vinyl, Cassette guy but I’m a digital streaming guy. Convenience is key for me. I spend my time being snobby about the speakers. I still respect the vinyl a lot though. I love how it lets you not take the music listening process for granted.
I wanna be that LP, Vinyl, Cassette guy but I’m a digital streaming guy.
Where do you do most of your music listening?
Every. Single. Place. I’d much rather have my speakers on than the television. I carry a portable speaker around my house with me. From the bathroom to the living room to the office…it goes everywhere. I also have these KRK Rokit 5s that I’m dying to set up, so stay tuned on that.
How do you find and listen to pre-release music?
When I worked at A3C, I would get sent a lot of music from managers/publicists pre-release, but now I will go to listening parties/events. Well…I used to. Right now, I’m not going anywhere.
What are your frustrations with listening to music digitally? Any benefits?
I used to get tons of emails with new music, but not as much anymore and I’m not mad about it. The streaming platforms have limited, commercial release-focused libraries and that’s definitely a pet peeve and I find myself sometimes forgetting where the great track was located and rummaging through apps. Convenience is my biggest draw to digital. Like I said, that’s always my first vote.
How do you keep track of everything you are listening to?
I have notes in my iPhone. I have playlists by mood. I have screenshots. My lists are really everywhere, but I have a system in my brain. I try to put everything in my Spotify library now. I’ll find music from stores or public spaces via Shazam and then place them in my music library in Spotify. I was an Apple Music guy for a while and then I got nostalgic and missed my Spotify playlists so I went back and got caught up in the visuals and that’s where I am now.
Discover the #HowWeListen Playlist
Listen to the #HowWeListen 2021 Picks playlist. Curated by this year’s interviewees.
Do you tip other people off to new music? How?
All of the time. I share from the platform or send the Spotify or Soundcloud link. I’ve also started sending artists’ profiles to my friends via Instagram too and let them go down the rabbit hole.
Anything you want to “promote”?
I mentioned that Roycebee is all about brand partnerships and productions. Currently, we produce a cross-generational storytelling series called Sweet Auburn Stories. We explore the American experience through the stories of older black Americans. Over the next few months, we will be hosting these conversations live and we will be discussing how music was a part of movements in America as well– such an important piece of the story. I’m really happy with the reputation that we’ve started to gain from working on some cool partnership projects as well! Feel free to reach out to chat about stuff! www.roycebee.co