Hailing from Tampa, Fla., independent rapper Big Baby Scumbag draws a lot of attention from his name alone. Don’t be fooled, however, as the rising artist has shown promise in the plethora of trap joints he’s put out in the four years he’s been making music.
With tracks like “Hammer Time” and “Flex Music,” Big Baby Scumbag’s rowdy sound is reminiscent of trap greats like Waka Flocka, all while his hilarious online presence is a testament to his animated sense of humor.
Earlier this year, the 25-year-old recently put out “Juvenile Hell,” a project produced by the trap legend himself, Lex Luger.
The former Awful Records artist sat down with HipHopDX in Los Angeles to talk about coming up in the rap scene with fellow Floridians like Wifisfuneral and XXXTENTACION, linking up with Lex Luger for his last album and his future plans for his unique inventory of merchandise.
HipHopDx: I want to take it back to your upbringings. I know you’re from Tampa, what was it like growing up and how’d you get into the music?
Big Baby Scumbag: Growing up in Tampa is pretty chill. I literally wanted to do a million things when I was a kid. I wanted to do sports, I had this dream of being a professional gamer. I wanted to be in the medical field. I even wanted to be a professional skateboarder at one point. I was always dabbling into certain shit. How I started rapping was because of my friend from middle school. He was always rapping, he used to go by J.G. And then he made this rap group called Scumbag World. It was him—his name is Skinny Scumbag—and my other homie Lil Scumbag. He was like, “Yo, I want you to be in this rap group.” I wasn’t rapping at the time, so I was like, “I guess, I don’t rap though, bro.” He was like, “Yeah, it don’t even matter, just be in the group to be in it. If you like it, then keep doing it. At least try.” The first day in the studio, I just rapped this super silly freestyle, it’s called “Jessica Simpson.” It was just troll, Lil B-type rap shit. And I don’t know, I just picked up on it like super quick.
HipHopDX: It seems like a lot of rappers nowadays are getting their start on accident. That’s dope that it panned out for you. What about your name, how’d that come about?
Big Baby Scumbag: How my name came, I was like, “Damn, I need a cool name.” So I came up with Baby Scumbag after Birdman from Cash Money. And I tried to change my Twitter name to that and the handle was already taken. I tried to improvise, I really liked this name. So I put the “Big” in front of it and made it Big Baby Scumbag and now it’s stuck. I personally feel like I couldn’t have any other rap name because that just fits with the brand so well. Even if I wanted to change my name, the fans wouldn’t allow it.
HipHopDX: I feel that, it’s one of those things that can’t be touched after it’s set in stone. So you started rapping when you were about 20? How old are you now?
Big Baby Scumbag: I’m 25 now. The first couple of years I didn’t even take it seriously. I was a rapper for a year and a half without any songs. People just knew me from like one song that I put on Soundcloud. I started taking this shit seriously in 2015. That’s when I really was like, “Okay, I’m going to be a rapper.”
HipHopDX: Was it something specific that made you take it seriously? Did you start popping off because of a show?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, my first song was called “The Trenches.” It was my homie Lil Xela. We put that out through Elevator. It was my first music video and everything. I got a good reception from it and at that point in time in Florida, it was a really big underground scene going on. That’s like when Wifisfuneral was coming up, and so was Ski Mask, XXXTENTACION, Lil Pump, Smokepurpp, all of us shared the same shows with each other. All these dudes only knew me for that one song and I didn’t make another song for another year and a half because I was like, “Okay, being a rapper is easy, all I have to do is make this one song and just perform it.” That was my train of thought at that point, like just live off this one song for the rest of my life.
After I dropped that initial song, I was going on tours and shit. I went on a Florida tour, I went on tour with Wifi a couple of times, only doing that one song. So, my set would come and I’m performing for three minutes and then I’d just get off stage. That song was just a warm up honestly. But the song that really gave me confidence doing this shit was called “Jelly.” And that was dropped in April 2016. I met Lil Yachty prior to dropping that song when I was on tour. As soon as I posted the song, he’s like, “Yo, this shit is crazy.” He retweeted it and it just got a bunch of attention. I was thinking I can’t stop now. Even if I wanted to, I can’t stop now.
HipHopDX: So I assume this probably doesn’t feel like work to you since that happened?
Big Baby Scumbag: Sometimes it feels like work. A lot of times, you have to make yourself do some shit. And it pays off. Even if I’m at my crib chilling, I’ll easily pick up a video game or some shit, trying to find a way to distract myself. When you make yourself do some shit and you finish writing a song or whatever, you feel good about it. That’s the right idea.
HipHopDX: Yeah, it’s all about doing things with that mindset to feel a sense of self-fulfillment. Going off a different note, did you go to college at all?
Big Baby Scumbag: Nah, so I went to orientation twice and didn’t go to any type of class after that. So the first time was like the same year I decided to start rapping. I went to orientation and just didn’t come back. The second time around I thought, “Okay, I’m going to try this out.” But yeah, it’s just not for me. I might go back to college eventually, but not right now.
HipHopDX: I feel that, college is definitely not for everybody. You don’t even need a degree to make it, especially out here and in the music industry.
Big Baby Scumbag: Facts, man. But it is nice to have some type of degree in something. It’s just extra brownie points. I feel like that would make my parents and family proud and just to have something to fall back on because eventually, I just don’t want to do rap my whole life. I want to be more than just a rapper. So I would want to get something that could benefit me in other areas in entertainment that rapping can’t do for me, whether that be business marketing or some shit.
HipHopDX: You can probably act too, that’s what lot of rappers in the industry are getting into now also.
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah! Just something, so I can be like, “Yeah, by the way I got this or can do that.”
HipHopDX: Yup, it’s that extra brownie points you were talking about. So you you’re in L.A. doing some music, are you working on a new project?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah man, working on some new music for my homie Mickey. He’s one of Diplo’s homies. I’ve been working on very experimental sounds. Nothing like what I’m used to doing. I feel like I’ve gotten kind of bored with just rapping over hard ass beats and I wanted to try something different. I told him, ‘Yo, next time I’m out here, let’s just lock in every single day.’ We’ve been at it so far like three or four days in nonstop.
HipHopDX: How much time do you normally spend in the studio, just all day and all night?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, all day for the most part. Sometimes I need a break from this so I’ll spend an hour or two running through songs. If I find something I don’t like in the song, I’ll change it. And more times, I’ll be in there just recording straight vocals. I’ll spend a day recording a bunch of vocals and another day just reflecting and listening to all of the songs.
HipHopDX: So you’re the type of guy to blue print before you get in there?
Big Baby Scumbag: A lot of stuff is written and just as much stuff is off the top of the head. If I get a vibe for a certain beat, some shit will just come out. Like “Dale Earnhardt,” I just played a bunch of different beats and I was just saying Dale Earnhardt over a bunch of them until I found the right one. That’s how a lot of my songs are.
HipHopDX: Yeah I feel that’s just a part of the creative process though when it comes to making stuff your own style. Now are you signed currently?
Big Baby Scumbag: Nah, I’m independent right now.
HipHopDX: Okay, got ya. For some reason I thought you were with Awful Records.
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, I was for a little bit last year. It was a singles deal. I had two singles with Awful. One was “Victoria Secret.” We actually shot that in Beverly Hills. It was my first time there, so we had a nice view, a barbecue, a jacuzzi, all that shit. And the second was called “Robocop.” That was shot in October last year.
HipHopDX: So in “Robocop,” the first time I played that, the first line is from Three 6 Mafia’s in “Slob On My Knob.” And I realized, that you kind of sounded like A$AP Ferg on “Plain Jane.” Has anybody ever told you that you sounded like Ferg?
Big Baby Scumbag: I’ve definitely heard that before. I’ve heard that, Juicy J, Gleesh. I’ve heard a bunch of comparisons. Even Dolph. I feel flattered though, because anybody I’m compared to, I’m a fan of their music. So it’s nothing offensive to me for someone to be like, “Yo, you sound like so and so.”
HipHopDX: Definitely not a bad thing when you’re compared to artists like those. I’ve noticed two of your songs being named after NASCAR drivers, “Dale Earnhardt” and “Carl Edwards” with Oliver Francis. Do you have some sort of infatuation with NASCAR? I’ve seen you rocking the hats too.
Big Baby Scumbag: In Florida, NASCAR is a big thing out there, especially with the Daytona 500. It’s like the NASCAR capital. Growing up, I was just around that. You go to the store, you’ll see NASCAR t-shirts, Bud Light hats, Chevrolet hats, all types of shit. It wasn’t anything new for me when I started rapping. I decided to bring that to the music side of shit. A lot of kids my age when we were younger, they’d wear NASCAR jackets not even knowing anything about NASCAR. But we just wanted to wear it just to have like Tony the Tiger or Scooby Doo or some shit on the jacket. It just looks cool. It was more of a fashion statement for us instead of really following it.
HipHopDX: Yeah the merchandise that I see from NASCAR has that vintage flare to it. So you recently dropped “Juvenile Hell” with Lex Luger. What was it like working with him?
Big Baby Scumbag: It’s pretty cool, man. Lex is such a legend. It was crazy for me to even work with him. When I was younger in high school, I always listened to old Waka Flocka, Gucci Mane, OJ da Juiceman. You know, Lex carried a lot of that production from back then. So I’d always told myself, if I ever start rapping, I really want to get one song with him. I was totally content with just one song produced by him. But yeah, we ended up doing a whole project and that was with the help of Father from Awful Records. I did an interview, and I was asked what my dream collab was. I said Lex Luger. I ended up making a tweet about it a couple of days later, and Father was like, “Yo, I know Lex.” So I said, “Send me some beats, I’ll give you something.” Lex literally didn’t know me at all at this point. I was kind of concerned about dropping a song, thinking what if he’s like, “How’d you get this beat?” But, when I dropped the track—it was “Metal Gear Solid”—and Lex DM’d me one day and was like, “This shit is hard, let’s work on some shit.” I seen that DM and I wanted to do backflips. It was so surreal. But yeah, man, shout out to Lex.
HipHopDX: That’s wild. Lex is definitely a veteran in the game. So I saw you played at Rolling Loud in Miami this year. How was that?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah man, I’ve been playing Rolling Loud like in Miami like the past three years.
HipHopDX: What was it like taking the stage for the first time, seeing all those people?
Big Baby Scumbag: Man, Rolling Loud 2016 is a very special moment for a lot of people in Florida just because this goes back to me talking about the Florida scene around 2015 to 2016 when X was coming up, Ski Mask, Smokepurpp, all those guys. There was this stage called the Citrus Rap Stage and all of us were at this one stage at one time. So you know how usually after rappers’ sets, everybody clears out? This time it was like, “Okay, whose turn is it now? Is it your set or is it your set?” It was a very special moment. That type of energy can’t be recreated at all. It was insane.
That was the same year I met Lil B for the first time. He was performing and I remember that there wasn’t any service at all out there. But somehow, my friend was able to call me and be like, “I’m at Lil B’s stage right now, come through right now!” So I run from one side of Rolling Loud to the other. I get there and it’s really just ambient. And I see Lil B on stage and it looks like he has a glowing aura around him and people were handing him stuff to sign. So yeah, I took a picture with him and everything and I ended up DM’ing later that day, hoping that he’d get back at me. But what’s so funny is that the next DM I got from him was 3 years later with his email and phone number.
HipHopDX: Damn, that’s dope. It’s not everyday you can exchange information like that with somebody of that caliber. So I take it that he’s one of your favorite artists?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, he’s definitely top 5 for sure. My whole style is based off of Lil B’s blueprint when it comes to videos and naming songs after figures in pop culture. He has songs like, “Ellen Degeneres” and “Mel Gibson.”
HipHopDX: That makes a lot of sense with some of your tracks now.
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, he had songs after songs just named after celebrities. So I took of inspiration from that.
HipHopDX: It seems to fit you perfectly, too. So you only got one project out right now, but have you been hit up by a major label to sign?
Big Baby Scumbag: I’ve had a meetings with labels. For me, I’ve always felt that if a label presents itself with the right criteria where it’s good on both ends where they’re giving me what I need, I have no problem with signing. But I feel like right now, it’s not a priority for me. When the opportunity presents itself, then so be it. I feel that a lot of people that sign to labels, they don’t really know how to market themselves so they want the label to do it. So far, I’ve been doing all this with a team of three people: Me, my videographer and my homie that’s a DJ. But yeah, I like labels, but at the same time the independent game is cool too.
HipHopDX: Yeah, there’s definitely a steady flow of pros and cons to signing, and you have to take in to account the little factors here and there. So moving on, talk about your merchandise, I saw that you had a pretty unique range of items on your website.
Big Baby Scumbag: I’m so next level with the merch, I just don’t want to make t-shirts. I want to make all types of shit. I just dropped condoms. [Editor’s note: Currently sold out]
HipHopDX: I saw that, that was pretty clever with the name.
Big Baby Scumbag: It’s been an inside joke between all my fans. A lot of people that are new to me and they see my name written out, they’re like, “Is that Big Baby Cumbag?” So it’s always been an inside joke, so I was like, “Okay, I got something for my fans.”
HipHopDX: And it’s legit, right? People can really buy them?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, it’s legit and they’re real, it’s latex.
HipHopDX: I thought somebody had just photoshopped that.
Big Baby Scumbag: Nah, it’s real, it’s no novelty item. I mean, if it don’t work, then that’s on you, but it is real. We’re all adults, we all know how to use condoms.
HipHopDX: That’s mad wild. But yeah, I feel that merchandise is a huge way for artists to get income. So you obviously got like the regular stuff too right, like hats and jackets and stuff?
Big Baby Scumbag: Yeah, I got hats, t-shirts, condoms, beer koozies. I want to make skateboards. I want to do temporary tattoos. I got about 20 tattoos, so I want to take one of those or the ones that my fans know me for and just make it so people can stick them on themselves. I also want to make bottle openers, fucking everything, I want to be like a walking gift shop.
HipHopDX: Whatever it takes to get the bag. Alright man, we’re nearing the end here, so what are your goals for your career right now?
Big Baby Scumbag: My goal right now is to branch off into like media. Not just music. I feel like the music is always going to be there. I’m not just going to wake up one day be like, ‘Oh, I don’t like rapping.” Rapping is always going to be there. For now, I want to just get on to podcasts, traveling, eating food and shit. Action Bronson-type shit. Just making different content. Because those opportunities are ones you can’t pass up because they don’t always come around. I’m going to keep doing music but I’m balancing it out doing other stuff.
HipHopDX: So for people who don’t know you, what do you want them to take from your music?
Big Baby Scumbag: Positivity, confidence and ambition. If you’re having a bad day at work or if you’re girl broke up with you or something, just listen to my music and you’ll get in a better mood. I make music that I would listen to. I never want to make some shit that doesn’t reflect me. If I can play my own shit 1,000 times, then that’s the stamp of approval that I know ya’ll are going to like it.
Follow Big Baby Scumbag on Instagram @bigbabyscumbag and watch his latest music video for “Toy Story” below.