Marvin “Slim” Scandrick is a gifted singer/songwriter, and one-fourth of the Grammy award-winning group, 112. He’s the lead singer of the group and achieved mainstream success with the quartet, but back in 2008, he was ready to pursue solo success. Slim released his first single “So Fly” ft. Yung Joc which also became a radio favorite that year. He also collaborated with other artists including Big Boi, Ryan Leslie, and Fabulous on his solo debut Love’s Crazy.
However, Slim is back at it again! He will release his second solo album, Refueled on May 13th on Shanachie Records. Following the first single “Killin Em Girl” ft. Mase, Slim collaborated with Atlanta rapper Rich Homie Quan on the second single “Never Break Up,” along with producers Patrick “Guitarboy” Hayes, Oddz & Endsz, Tim Kelly, Bridgetown, Kevin Rockhill, and former Bad Boy label-mates, Mase and Carl Thomas.
Slim states this new record’s content applies to all ages because he shares his positive energy and diverse approach to music. ” The album is classic; everyone from age to 8 to 80 can enjoy it. I stretched myself out, and that reflects who I’ve been listening to, not just R&B and hip-hop but country, jazz, and more pop.” Even though Slim is participating in other projects, he made sure he protects the legacy of 112 by balancing the two musical endeavors.
Singersroom.com chatted with the R&B singer about his new solo album, why it is important for music to stay relevant, and celebrating 20 years in the business with 112.
Check out our exclusive interview!
New album, Refueled: This album is amazing. It is my best body of work thus far, and I am excited about this new album. It is completely different from Love’s Crazy because I am in a different place. Refueled represents the current state in my life right now; this album is just more positive and subtle, which prompted me to name the album Refueled . A lot of the R&B music that is out now is considered to be “trap soul.” And so, for the album and this record, I stepped out of that musical direction. I wanted to create a body of work that has more emphasis on content and musical delivery. Once you go through the album, it is a great listen for everyone.
Selecting Producers for this Refueled: I knew the producers except one or two, and they are a part of my team. For the producers I didn’t know, they spoke highly of them and encouraged me to work with them. The producers I’ve known for years can figure out what I’m trying to say in my music. The sky is the limit as far as production is concerned because you don’t want to put yourself in a box. I want to make a statement with my music and create music that would be easy for people to listen right away, and the writers and producers I’ve worked with for Refueled understood my vision. It was many long nights and different opinions about the album’s direction, but it was all worth it in the end.
Working with Rich Homie Quan on the single “Never Break Up”: Atlanta is considered to be very small musically because everyone knows everybody in the industry. It’s really a small world, a small circle. And when I worked with Rich Homie Quan, it was like working with family. He is like a brother to me and he was eager to do the record. He jumped on it right away when he heard it and I knew he was the right person for this record. I have to say, R&B is completely different from when 112 and I came out. So I needed Quan to step into my musical journey. I recorded “Never Break Up” with Quan because there is nothing wrong with a man expressing his love and vulnerability in front of his woman. It is okay to be sensitive and tell a woman how you’re really feeling without pride. That was my point and Quan did an amazing job.
Working with former Bad Boy band-mates Mase and Carl Thomas: It was like old times because we used to work together when we were on Bad Boy. I selected a song for each of them based on personality. When I did “Forever” with Carl, it was more of an edgy sound because of his eclectic vocals. “Forever” also needed live instruments to enhance the record’s musical composition. For Mase, he just wanted to be a part of it, and it was a perfect match.
Bad Boy Reunion Tour at the Barclays Center: It’s like a family reunion. I just saw Carl and Faith not too long ago. It is always great to reunite with my Bad Boy family and Puff. We had some great times together, and we can keep Biggie’s legacy alive. It just allows us to go back in time because it was a time where music felt good. The 90’s was just a great era for music because more artists were willing to make great music. It’s going to be epic on May 20th; it’s a historical occasion because as I said, we get to honor B.I.G., too. We’re able to bring life and meaning to those songs we recorded years ago on stage.
112 Celebrating 20 Years in the Industry & Remaining a Tight Unit: It is truly a reality for me and the group. We are blessed to be around for 20 years, but the most important moment for me was before we were signed to Bad Boy. We were friends before we were introduced to the music industry. We all had a dream and was determined to make it happen. We used to be at Mike’s grandmother house watching the award shows and pretending we were the recipients. Those are the humble moments I cherish because it has meaning. It’s not about the awards and accolades because they are meaningless. Four guys just came together and had faith in each other; we believed we can contribute to each other’s success. And because of it, we were able to travel all over the world, perform in huge arenas, and just work with some of the most talented people. We have a household name, and it’s just truly a blessing.
Balancing 112 with Solo Projects: I have a great team around me and they let me know when something conflicts with my solo projects. And plus as a group, we respect each other’s career aspirations outside of 112. I am juggling a lot of hats, but it’s definitely manageable. I know how to separate 112 and my solo work musically. My team and I set a schedule that fits well with 112 and my solo affairs, and we stick to it. It fits well and I’m all for it!
Making Your Debut on Shanachie Entertainment: I was offered the deal two years ago when I met the Shanachie team. At first, they had a different opinion about the direction the album should go, or when I should release my album. And I said no thank you to the offer because I wanted to do everything on my own terms. I wanted to be my own boss. But when I was offered to sign with the label on the second attempt, I was clear about what I wanted and needed for Refueled, and we were on the same page second time around. It turned out to be an easy process because the team was not trying to change my musical style.
Remaining Relevant in R&B Music: I feel like we were able to put life and originality in our music. Like for example, the record “Cupid,” we poured our heart and soul on the record. It is truly one of those songs you can really hear our vocal range and content. “Cupid” is about a guy expressing his love and gratitude for his woman. You still have those guys who want to do right by their women and want to give their best. That is why we said, “Cupid doesn’t lie / But you won’t know unless you give it a try / Oh baby, true love won’t lie, but we won’t know unless we give it a try /Give it a try.” The lyrics were straight to the point, but relatable.
We need to get back to that side of R&B. Everybody keeps saying that but there’s no action. Music’s current state is not at it’s best right now because we are more focused on quantity and not quality. Yes, an artist can win five or ten Grammys but is their music relatable? Not everybody drives a Bentley or Ferrai, so it’s important for artists to make music that fits people from all walks of life. It doesn’t matter if they’re rich, poor, or middle class; as long as they can play your record at any given point. Everyone can relate to love because love has so many different elements: the good, bad, and ugly. I want someone to say that about my music or 112’s music five, ten, or fifteen years from now. I would like for my name or 112’s to come up because it really shows we did our job as artists.
God put me in this position so I can affect people’s though music based on sound and content. I, or 112, can sing for 50,000 people, but if at least one person can apply the music to their everyday life, then that’s bigger than my check. It matters more than the check. Hopefully, when I release this album on May 13th, people can understand me more as a solo artist and my passion for music. I just want my music to be more recognizable for people and still create music that will be worthwhile.