VīB - 10 Questions Music Interview
What happens when a wild child meets an old soul in Music City? You get the Fresh R&B sounds of VīB. Nate Melville and Chaun Davis were born 2 weeks and 1,200 miles apart in October 1993. Nate, a city guy raised in Massachusetts, and Chaun, a country boy raised in South Carolina, on the surface couldn’t be more different. After a chance encounter in a Lyft ride in 2017 the two quickly bonded and haven’t stopped working since. Using Nashville as their canvas, VīB makes Fresh R&B music inspired by the sounds of nostalgia and the stories of today. If you’re listening for smooth melodies and vivid storytelling, you’re listening for VīB.
Was there something (an experience) or someone in your life that was the "catalyst" for you to start writing music? Tell us about it.
Before we were performers and producers, we both started individually as songwriters. From our early teenage years until even now, we’re motivated to tell the stories of those around us. Luckily we both had supportive parents that encouraged us early in our writing careers. Relationships have also had a big impact on our writing styles evolving over time.
Let's get this out of the way. What is the CRAZIEST thing that has ever happened to you in your music career?
We both experienced mishaps and mistakes onstage during our time as solo artists. The worst is forgetting the lyrics to your own songs onstage! We’ve both missed a step in the choreography or came in too early on a music cue; the growing pains of performing. By the time we came together as VīB, a lot of those growing pains were worked out.
What has been the high point of your music path?
The high point of our path so far has been releasing our visual playlist, "vibwithus". We recorded 7 songs and filmed a music video for each song in a different city across the country. We wanted to create an immersive experience that we call a millennial life story and curating this visual playlist allowed us to do just that. It was a lot of work but it definitely paid off!
So, how do you approach songwriting or what is your creative process like?
Every song we create comes about differently. Being a duo allows us to truly collaborate in the studio. Sometimes, Chaun will be working on a melody and Nathaniel will build a track around it. Alternatively, Nathaniel could play a sick beat that inspires Chaun to write something crazy! Our commitment to collaboration allows us to communicate our strengths and create something we both can believe in.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Indie Artists today? Or, if you could ask the music industry to change one thing, what would it be?
The biggest challenges facing indie artists today are time and attention. Once upon a time, fans could go to a record store and buy three or four albums at a time, supporting all of their favorite artists at once, no matter how big or small. Now, with streaming, every artist is competing for streams with only a finite number of hours in a day. Fans have the luxury of listening to whoever they want as often as they want and indie artists are now competing against mainstream acts for the time and attention of streaming fans. Rising above the noise and being heard is still the biggest challenge any indie artist can face.
If you could share the stage with one other artist or band, who would it be and why?
Somebody get us on the stage with The Carters! Jay-Z and Beyoncé have revolutionized the music business by educating artists about the power of ownership and creative control and have consistently demonstrated Black Excellence for over 20 years. Sharing a stage with those that have paved the way for us is always the goal.
What are your rehearsals generally like? Or, how do you prepare for a live show?
Our process for preparing a live show generally starts with us understanding where we’re playing and what our audience wants to hear. After designing the appropriate setlist, we arrange the music and hire the band. Once music rehearsals begin coming together, we add the choreography and begin practicing our performance. Lastly, we create the visuals for the screens behind us to bring the entire story together. This entire process can be as short as two weeks or as long as two months depending on how big the show is.
Pick one song that was your greatest challenge to write. Tell us about it!
There’s a song on "vibwithus" called 9-5. We wanted to lament with other millennials about the struggles of working a traditional job knowing your heart and mind is on your creative passions. Artists, writers, engineers, dancers, photographers, and the like can all commiserate with the pressure of having to pay bills while pursuing a creative profession. We wanted to present this point of view authentically and writing this song definitely took longer than the rest. We’re proud of how it turned out too!
What's coming up in the future?
We’re working on the followup to "vibwithus". What do you release after the millennial life story but the millennial love story! Nashville has continued to inspire our sound and our style. After being surrounded by the storytelling of country music and the rich history of Soul music in Nashville, the Fresh R&B music we’re creating has us excited and ready to go! We can’t wait to come back when it’s all ready and share it with you.
Tell us where fans can access your music?
"vibwithus", our debut playlist, is streaming everywhere at Smart URL!
We also released an EP called "the acapellas" that features a few songs from "vibwithus" completely a cappella, streaming now at URL.
Thank you so much!