B. Cooper has just released one of the most exciting releases "While the City Sleeps." Brad Cooper was born and raised in Alabama by two loving parents who taught him to love others. He never grew up in church but never got in much trouble either. One day, at the age of 15, his friends invited him to go to a retreat. The result was a face-down repentance and acceptance of Christ.
Like most boys, B.Cooper had hoop dreams and even baseball fantasies. It wasn't until the age of 14 that his aspirations began to shift as he discovered how to expand his gift of poetry into 16-bar verses. B.Cooper recorded a few songs, and fell in love with hip hop. In college, he met Dirty Rice and the two quickly started developing a unique sound that encompassed both their visions of music.
Now signed to Reflection Music Group, B.Cooper plans to make real, transparent music that combines creativity with substance. His upcoming project, Spare Change, is a collection of songs straight from his heart and reflections on how seemingly small things to one person can mean the world to another. "If I speak it, I lived it or seen it with my own eyes," B.Cooper hopes to present a transparent look into his life that builds relationships and leads people to solutions.
We are so honored to be able to catch up with him for this exclusive Hallels' interview.
Hallels: For some of our readers who may not be familiar with your music yet, can you briefly tell us a little about yourself.
B.Cooper: I guess we can start with the name. B.Cooper. Really original right?! I was born and raised in Florence Alabama. I started writing lyrics at the age of 15. In the beginning, I wrote songs for my best friend KW. He was black, I was white. At the time, I thought it made the most sense for him to be the face of it all, but I honestly LOVED being able to express myself. After a short period of doing that, I decided I wanted some of the limelight (or the ability to write about things that I was personally going through). This continued through high school on into college where I met Foure and Dirty Rice. To this day, I haven't found anyone that I like better when it comes to working on music and just living life in general. Through hard work and determination (and let's be honest, knowing the right people) and God's graces, I have fallen into the situation I am in now. In Early 2014 I signed a record deal (wait right here for a second . . . I have waited so long to say that) with Reflection Music Group. The label is truthfully a family and it has been amazing to have a team behind me. In 2014, Dirty Rice and I put out two projects and here we are today!
Hallels: How would you describe your style of music?
B.Cooper: Two words, Gangster Rap. Or not. I would call it Real Life Music. There are times when I want to intentionally talk about my personal walk with God; other times I want to talk about a girl that broke my heart. This dynamic makes for interesting music. I am a believer that God changed my life and I am not ashamed to say that at all. That being said, life is real. Sometimes it stinks. Sometimes we want to lay in bed and not start our day until tomorrow. I feel like I have been able to be transparent and honest with my life. People can relate to this. If you have heard me talk about it in a song, I have either lived it or witnessed it first-hand. I think you could describe my style of music as transparent. Best word I can think of anyways.
Hallels: On your brand new album "While the City Sleeps," you got to work with Dirty Rice. How did the two of you start working together?
B.Cooper: I met dirty my first year of college. Don't ask what year that was because I don't want any funny birthday presents this year. We met through a very strange introduction from a mutual acquaintance (later turned out to be an amazing friend named Joey). I blame two people for my dropping out of college; Kanye West and Dirty Rice. I also know now that blaming other people for your decisions get you nowhere. I have also learned that jobs really like people to finish things, so I have recently went back and got my degree! Stay in school! Honestly, Dirty Rice and I immediately clicked. I have watched his growth throughout the years and he is really a remarkable producer and friend. I think he has been one of the people that has believed in me from the jump. We put out an album in 2003 (Reflections of Self), an album in 2011 (Cashier of the Month), and now two ep's (Spare Change and While the City Sleeps). Definitely looking for Dirty and I to work more together in the near future!
Hallels: One of the songs on the album that really intrigue me is "1994." For our readers who may not have heard this song, what's the song about?
B.Cooper: The song actually sparked from a 4 day stint at Dirty's house. My friend SykSense is an amazing producer (Drake, Dj Drama, Kelly Rowland, Tinashe', etc.) was in Atlanta and came through the studio with the homie Ducko McFli. After playing through some beats, I picked out a few and he left them with me in the studio. Later that day, I sent the beat to Foure. He was in Nashville at the time, and I didn't hear back from him for a few hours. I figured he was at work, and we continued to work. When I did hear back Four, he emailed me the hook for my song One Love, another song that didn't make the ep, and the hook and the first verse for 1994. Basically he was singing / rapping about 1994, the year that he started chasing his dream of music. If you listen to the second verse, I say "It was like 1999". This is the year that I started to do music and really pursue a career in this whole music thing. That being said, 1994 is basically whatever year or time you started chasing your dream. That dream could be music; that dream could be owning a funeral home. Regardless, whenever you starting pursuing your passion is your "1994".
Hallels: If you have to choose two songs on the new album you are most proud of, which would they be? And why?
B.Cooper: Off top, the first that come to mind are Nightmare and 1 Love. I think the reason these stand out to me are that these are both true stores. Nightmare goes through my journey. The first verse describes the mindset when I recorded Reflections of Self. The second verse moves forward to the "Cashier of the Month" period of my life. The third verse is really a look on Spare Change and moving forward. This song is important to me and I feel like I nailed what I was shooting for. 1 Love is just a song that contains three true stories. The whole gist of the song is that no matter who we are (race, religion, sexuality, gender,etc.) we all need the SAME God. We all need the SAME Love. It's not like we get a pass that says we need Less of God because we acted better. Truth be told, we all need the same thing. This is something that was very heavy on my heart, and is a huge part of what I want people to take from me; on stage and off.
Hallels: Are you currently touring in support of the album?
B.Cooper: I have done shows here and there promoting the album. Shout out to anyone bringing me out and booking me! It has been an amazing year for me. I have never really "toured" but I have definitely traveled more this year than any other year in my life! I love getting out and actually getting to hang out with Real people.
Hallels: If our readers would like to see you or purchase your new album, where can they go?
B.Cooper: You can find me on www.iamBCooper.com Everything is there. I also am grateful that I was able to get the same handle on everything. I am iamBCooper on EVERYTHING. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Ebay, Craigslist, Tinder . . . well you get the point. No I don't have a Tinder (honestly don't even know what that is lol) (no I don't have a Craigslist or Ebay account either . . but I do know what those are!)
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