SSC: Hi Chad! In your own words, who are you and what do you do?
CD: Hello!! My Name’s Chad. I’m a Pest Controller for a living but my passion has always been music. I’ve been producing and DJing Dubstep since 2007.
SSC: So, how was the journey? What started it all off and how did that lead you to where you are today?
CD: My journey started by going to a SubDub (at Leeds West Indian Center) in October 2006. It was game over from then on. In 2007 I bought my first set of decks and started collecting records. Around this time, I started messing with making beats but it wasn’t really until 2010 that I was making some OK stuff. Around 2012 is when I started to find my feet production-wise. In 2013, I set up my label Foundation Audio and moved to Bristol – a hotspot for bass music so naturally, things really started taking off a couple of years into Bristol life when I started making connections in the scene.
SSC: Who are the main influences for you, musically?
CD: Music-wise, all the early dons were equal influences really – Skream, Benga, D1, Loefah, Kromestar, Tes La Rok, RSD, Mala, Distance, Coki, etc – all the usuals. The first dubstep tune I heard was ‘Midnight Request Line’ by Skream. I was hooked from the get-go. Dubstep Allstars Vol 4 and 5 were some of my first mix CDs so all the stuff that was coming out around that time was influencing me as it was all fresh.
SSC: What do you consider the highlight of your music career so far, and why?
CD: I’ve got to say releasing an RSD record is my number 1! The man’s a certified legend and has been making bangers since before I was in my mum’s belly – a big influence on me. For him to say he’s a fan of the label and suggest a release blew my mind!!! Next up has got to be both my American tours (with The Greys and Teffa), it’s an amazing feeling knowing your music is being listened to across the globe.
SSC: Any moments you’d rather forget?
CD: I’ve definitely had my fair share of ropey gigs! Who hasn’t? None so bad I’d rather forget luckily!!
SSC: As well as being an artist in your own right, you’re also the bossman of ‘Foundation Audio’ – when and why did you decide to start the label?
CD: I set up the label in 2013 initially to put out my own productions as I was struggling to find labels to push my sound. After the first release, I decided it wasn’t all about me and made the decision to put out underrated artists I was feeling that I felt needed more exposure.
SSC: Anyone we should be keeping an eye on right now? Any particular artists/ DJs standing out to you?
CD: Honestly, there’s too many to mention, but I’ll name a few… Teffa, 3WA, Quasar, Somah, Zygos, Tetrad, Rareman, Cartridge, Retina, mrshl, Chief Kaya, Truant, Dubape, DPRTNDRP, Glume & Phossa, De-Tu. This is just the tip of the iceberg though. I get sent amazing music from people pretty much daily.
DJ wise, again, too many to mention, but off the top – Sicaria Sound play a banging set. I feel like they rep the underground really well plus it’s nice to have some attractive females to look at rather than your average dubstep geezer.
SSC: Other than bass-focused music, are there any other genres or artists you are particularly fond of currently?
CD: I used to be a HUGE heavy metal fan playing in bands till the age of 20, but for the last 13 years – it’s mainly been dubstep, hip-hop, dub and drum and bass. Honestly, I like most music though. It’s always nice to hear new stuff!
SSC: What’s on the horizon for Chad Dubz? Anything exciting coming up?
CD: It’s going to be another busy year for me release wise! I’ve already got 7 or 8 vinyl releases in the bag for 2020 plus some very very exciting releases coming out on Foundation. I’m off to Brazil in February and got 1 show sorted in Sao Paulo which I’m looking forward to. Potentially another USA or even Australia / NZ tour towards the end of the year – nothing concrete yet we’ll see what happens!!
SSC: And finally, if you could give one piece of advice for those wishing to follow in your path, what would it be?
CD: Don’t follow in my path! Set your own goals and work as hard as you can to achieve them. When I started out all I wanted was to have a vinyl release, by the end of this year I would have had my 24th!!! It’s taken a lot of hard work, thousands of hours in the studio, making beats nearly every day for the last 10 years with little to no financial reward and a lot of sacrifices – I’d probably be in a much better position financially and probably a lot further in ‘normal life’ if I didn’t take this path but someone’s got to do it! It’s a labour of love and nothing more, so yeah, maybe don’t follow my path haha.
Another thing I’d say is just to make sure you’re being realistic and don’t have any crazy expectations either. It’s a tough and competitive scene to be in and there are no guarantees. Don’t beat yourself up about it or compare yourself to others – it will just get you down. Do it for the love and focus on yourself!