The man behind the Strike Boogie sound is someone with a long and astonishing career to date, across a number of artistic disciplines so we sat down for a quick chat to get a more complete story.
Q: Music aside you have a very wide background in the creative arts, can you tell us more about that and particularly your work as DarkChildx2k which many people will be familiar with.
SB :Wow, well there has been a plethora of works that I have done mostly as a character designer, illustrator and comic book artist on the intellectual property development level as an art director. My most known published works are for Big Eyes Small Mouth 3rd Edition (2006) under Arthaus & produced by Guardians Of Order who are now Dyskami Publishing. I was known for working developing projects under Dabel Brothers/Marvel Comics (2007) and working with Dawn Richard’s Danity Kane comic book series published by Eigomanga (2010). Also, artwork for the official inaugural launch of Metal Gear Studio under the supervision of Hideo Kojima and Konami UK (2013).
However, my most popular works were all done out of personal projects and fan artworks that were multi-published, won awards, and are accounted for my level of notoriety as DarkChildx2k to be established as it is. Some of those artworks include Naruto, Bleach, Deathnote, Final Fantasy VII and Kingdom Hearts.
Q: And from there how and indeed why did you decide to pursue a musical avenue?
SB: I love telling this story. <<Laughs>> Music, dancing, literature and theatrical arts were my first known and explored talents at an early age. By the time I was 6 years old I was developing my own mixtapes and Djing using multiple boom boxes with cassettes to match tempos. Music was never something that I planned to abandon, I simple chose to not express to people that I could make music until I was ready to attack it with full creative control and on my own terms. I can easily say it is a stronger skill than my art which I developed as a way to give myself a visual for the audio, in truth. Extensions of the expression. Music is the soundtrack to my life and I have an extensive database to prove it. <<Laughs>> I knew the day that I would appear to the public with my music that I would have a massive vault and experience. I love to invent and create. That must come from my grandfather Ras Shorty I who is the creator of an entire existing genre of music that is Soca and Jamoo! Something to be proud of.
Q: Do you feel that the different artistic disciplines allow you to explore different sets of ideas?
SB: I remember when I publicly had my focus as just an illustrator and how frustrating it was sometimes when I could not take one of my other artistic skills out in confidence to substitute for what it was I was trying to convey. I have gone through that frustration so I get it. I know not many people have given themselves the chance to explore more of their creativity in full joy like I have, and I didn’t realize how rare it was to be able to do so until I got much older when I saw many of those I grew up with creating had slowed down or given up entirely on their craft(s).
That being said, it really does open the floodgates to allowing myself every possible way to express myself.
Having multiple artistic disciplines has allowed me not only to learn more about my creative limitations, but it has helped me to learn so much more about myself in a way I could not imagine without. And if I had the power to share that ability to expand with others, I feel like people would understand why I can’t live without creating. It is my entire being. I have explained this to few people but it is the huge difference between ‘Bruce Wayne is Batman’ to ‘Batman is Bruce’ which if you recognize what I am saying you will agree that the latter is false. I am Strike Boogie and Strike is nothing but a multi-functional creation engine that runs indefinitely.
Q: Your music has a sort of epic quality to it, dramatic and soaring, sometime dreamlike…do you see it as the soundtrack to your art or something which stands on its own?
SB: Thank you for the compliment! I am still learning about what it is people hear in my sounds as I have been studying genres of music of various angles for so long that I feel it’s become one massive jar of jam with bursting flavors across the board. I love soundtrack music notably, and there is such an impacting power behind it that I never understood why it didn’t trickle in to mainstream sound. So my obsession became music that would fit in a film or animation while also being a song for the radio or intimate listening. It is like a movie in itself in the sense that it can stand alone, yet it does tell one part of a gargantuan multi verse. On that note, I have been building a Marvel/ DC sized multi-verse series for over 25 years now and I believe people will finally be able to experience this in 2020 along with my self discovered and invented concept of creative alchemy.
Q: You’ve spoken about “creative alchemy” as a means of bringing all of your artistic disciplines together, can you expand on that idea?
SB: There is no separation between all of the arts & entertainment. There is only separation because people with separate skill sets try to come together and most times its a self fulfilling prophecy that uncommonly sees the full realization without compromise to the vision. However, if arts & entertainment was not a form of compensation and trade we had to worry ourselves over without it being a sacrifice to our living, I believe people would be able to come to my conclusion faster.
Within that linear stream that ties all of the arts & entertainment together, I have managed to find a way to meld multiple constructs in to one cohesive form that would vastly change the industry as we know it and create a new wave that would benefit everyone who wishes to pursue a successful career in their fields. It all starts when people not only learn every dimension of their own craft but begin to wrap their heads around the fields of other people they wish to collaborate with in order to have a better understanding of how to make the best out of organization. For myself, it all started as a child when someone asked me ‘if one of my artistic fields changed so drastically that what I did would be obsolete, what would I do?’ And my answer was every other art which would inevitably bring me back to the point of creation. Prince and Michael Jackson taught me well.
Q: Where next for Strike Boogie the musician and the man behind the music?
SB: I am thrilled to be able to push more of my music to the forefront this year and in 2020 which is considerably the biggest year in my career as a creative. The Moodist discograghy is currently at the second EP instalment in the recording and mixing stages entitled NEUROTIC. There is no set release date. But people won’t have to wait for that album for too long, and I have a few singles up my sleeve. Something is coming close to November and it will be a bop! StrikeBoogie.com is where you can find out the latest press releases!