XLR8R’s Inbox checks in with Saba Mohajerjasbi, the DJ half of Seattle-based hip-hop duo Blue Scholars. The snarky Moharjerjasbi talks to us about frat boys, high school Nintendo-core bands that wouldn't let him join, and his all-time favorite band, Next. Blue Scholars’ latest offering, the Oof! EP, is out now on Massline.
XLR8R: What are you listening to right now?
Saba Mohajerjasbi: Discovery LP.
What's the weirdest story you have ever heard about yourself?
I've heard several. The weirdest stories usually involve a girl who thinks I'm extremely kind and intelligent. I don't understand why, because TV raised me to be an ignorant jerk.
In which band did you want to be when you were 15?
There were these guys at my junior high who were in this cover band. They did mostly songs from The Cure and themes from 8-bit Nintendo games like RC Pro-Am and Mike Tyson's Punch Out. I wanted to be in that band so bad. Those guys were so cool. They wouldn't let me join and I was never sure why. I assumed it was because I always buttoned my shirt to the top and because I didn't have any credibility as a musician. I actually still don't think they'd let me join.
Worst live show experience?
The worst are the ones in my dreams. I have this recurring nightmare where I'm perpetually on tour opening for "hip-hop pioneers." After each show, a bunch of frat guys approach me and tell me how "real" I keep it and how much they "hate mainstream rap" because "it's all about bitches and bling." Sometimes I wake up screaming, and sometimes it's not a dream.
Favorite city in which to play?
Any city that is lacking a drive-thru liquor/firearms store is fine with me.
Favorite studio toy?
What is one thing you couldn’t live without (excluding the obvious essential, i.e. air, water, etc.)?
What is your favorite item of clothing?
If you could reduce your music to a single word, what would it be?
That pretty much sums up the problem right there.
What would we find you doing on a Sunday afternoon in Seattle?
Typing out answers to interviews. You know, my biggest influences and how I got started making music. Really cool stuff.
For what did you always get in trouble when you were little?
Doing my own thinking. But I got into even more trouble doing other people's thinking.
With which other artist would you most like to work next?
Oops... I read that as “With which other artist would you most like to work? Next?" and I was gonna say, "Next? I guess that might be cool. I mean, they haven't really had a hit since “Too Close” but it might be decent to get RL Hugger and gang together again for some remixes. I dunno if that leather-vest-but-no-shirt R&B thing is really hittin' in '09 tho."
What's the last thing you read?
A question about whether or not I wanted to work with Next. That was weird.
Complete this sentence: In the future...
I’ll likely think about the past and say, "Darn, I should have thought more about my future."
Stupidest thing you've done in the last 12 months?
I watched almost all of season 4 of Lost on my laptop in one day. Seriously, I think I hate every character on that show except for Sayid, Jin, and Sun.
Well, their original name was Straight4ward, an R&B group comprised of RL Hugger, and brothers Terry and Raphael Brown. KayGee of Naughty By Nature signed them and produced their first record, Rated Next. It had a feature from Adina Howard and another from Koffee Brown, as well as some others I can't remember right now. That pretty much exhausts my knowledge of Next. I'm not sure why I keep getting asked about them.