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Upcoming Music Artist, Chris Scholar!

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

I could not begin to express how impressed I am with VCU’s very own upcoming artist, Chris Scholar. He is a dedicated and talented musician who choses to continue his education while pursuing a career in music. Not only can he sing, but he also dances and has his own video production company with his older brother, Curtis (a VCU alumni). I am pleased to present the interview of Chris Scholar!

Age: 21
Hometown: Richmond
Relationship status: Taken
Major: Mass Communications-Broadcast Journalism Concentration; Minor in business
Class: Senior, May 2012 graduate

How did you get started in music?
I started singing in church when I was 8 but started recording when I was 14 when one of my friends and I produced our first mixtape. When I was 16, I founded a dance song called “Strutta Walk.” The beat was from a Myspace that allowed me to use the song after a little competition. The only requirement was that I record the song on their website.

Together we made our own song, put it on YouTube, and it generated a little bit of a buzz! I even grabbed the attention of the producer, Teddy Bishop! He is a platinum producer for Latoya Luckett’s song “Torn.”  After speaking to Teddy, I became serious about music and my parents even believed in my dreams! 

Why do you stay in school while also pursing a music career?
I am in school because I am also pursuing my ambition in the mass communications department, Video Production. I learn about cameras which I feel goes hand and hand with music because artists should be in tune with how they look visually on camera.

Behind the camera, I like to direct and edit a lot of my own stuff. That’s the reason why I’m in school. In case the music doesn’t happen as fast as I want it to, I can make money off of working with the camera, and I can still be in the entertainment field and meet the same people.

What would you say your musical focus is?
I think I’m still finding my focus, but it’s definitely an accumulation of R&B, rap, and dancing. That’s my style. At first it was mostly R&B, but I’m starting to get into both.

Do you write your own music?
 I write mostly all of my music, but I also work with other people. I have most recently worked with Grammy award winning producer for Ashanti’s album, Rio Bridges.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
My inspiration comes from various things I see when I walk around. My inspirations are not necessarily based on my personal experiences, but things that I see that surround my life. However the main ideas come from situations that I go through.

What’s the story behind the name Chris Scholar?
I was dubbed the name at the age of 17 when my friend’s sister said “scholar,” and it stuck in my head ever since. Since high school I have always been studious — always making honors, taking AP classes, and in the National Honors Society. 

Do your parents support you and your decision to pursue music?
My parents are 100 percent behind me! They go to all my shows and events, and they are really support me (my brother is as well).

Favorite person you collaborated with?
Favorite person is Rio Bridges. Recently, we produced a song called “Fly” — it hasn’t been released, but it is different from the music that I am used to. It leans more towards the pop; and it showed expanded my musical horizons. 

What are you currently working on?
I currently have two more videos that I am working on. Also, I met Jermaine Dupree in Atlanta two weeks ago and I spent the whole day with him; now I am waiting for news about where that will take me.  While I spent the day with him, he took me to New York to sing in front of L.A. Reid, and that was pretty cool!

With everything focussing on the success that you are experiencing, how do you stay humble and concentrated?
I pray everyday and thank God, because you can not do anything in this world without him! I have always been taught that—I come from a Christian foundation. If you stay humble, I think more blessings come your way.

What would you say to people who look at celebrity stories like Whitney Houston’s, a woman who started in the church but plummeted downhill during her rise to fame?
I think in this industry, a lot of people from outside who looking in do not have the full perspective of the ins and outs of the industry. I am still getting in to it myself! Already though, I can see that it is a lot of struggle, a lot of temptations, and it’s hard; but you have to be really grounded and surround yourself with the right people to make it. Since I’ve been doing it so long, I am glad that I have been able to grow as a person before my career manifests.

How did the idea of dance videos come about?
The dance videos were inspired by my brother and by Rio. I had a lot of videos where I sing and rap, and I dance a little bit, but people really did not know that I can dance.

Check out “Man in the Mirror,” a video of me free styling.

Where do you see yourself in 5 and 10 years?
In 5 years: I hope to have an album and a Grammy.

In 10 years: I hope to run my own production company and be an artist that has had a lot of achievements in his life, and made a difference through my music.

If you could pick one male artist and one female artist to work with, who would it be?
I really want to work with Andre 3000. I feel like his artistry is amazing and that he is really in tuned with his music.

Female artist? That’s tough. I would probably say Beyonce’. I think that would just be cool!

What are your plans after graduation?
Right now my video production company is doing really well. I have been getting a lot of jobs lately. I just want to structure my business more, set it up properly and really invest my time into branding and building the company; and also, I plan to continue making music.

What are some of your pet peeves?
I don’t like people who are lazy–that really irks me.

What is one thing that people should know about you, as a person, artist and student?
I want people to know how hard I work and sometimes I go days without speaking to someone because I am in the studio. I have help from my brother and my family, but mostly, I have accomplished everything  on my own by just going and doing whatever it is I need to get done, and never being scared. I definitely want people to recognize how hard I work.

If something happens, I want people to know that I have worked for it, and I deserve it.

You talk a lot about your brother. Do you plan to incorporate him into the dance videos or any of your music?
Me and my brother do a lot together. The production company is ours together. He used to dance before me; he used to sing before me, so I really looked up to him and learned from his mistakes. If he got into trouble, I would try and do the opposite. He is three years older than me. As far as dancing goes, I learned from him. Singing, he used to sing in show choir, and I became really passionate because of him. While he kind of leaned more towards business and school, I really went hard at the music and dancing. He inspired me to get to where I’m at today.

Do you have any advice that you would give to people?
I would say pick a focus and find somewhere that you really excel at. Just because you can rap, doesn’t mean you will be a rapper. Work hard at what you want, and find a way to be creative and different in order to reach people.

Make sure to check out Chris Scholars “Lotus Flower Bomb!” 

Chelsea is a Her Campus alumnae and the Cofounder and former President and Editor-In-Chief of Virginia Commonwealth University's Her Campus chapter. Chelsea has diverse professional experience thanks to her many internships in college. Her experience includes working in the research department at Viacom's MTV, assisting the CEO of a boutique jewelry brand in NYC, and working at an English tourist magazine in Japan. Beyond her professional life, Chelsea is inspired by fashion, finance, all things Harry Potter, her dream of working for a company she loves, and her travels. Chelsea turns to Sailor Moon episodes and Harry Potter soundtracks when life gets tough. Also a good amount of shopping, traveling, and making memories with loved ones will maintain her status quo.Connect!LinkedIn Instagram: @chelsskubo