The overall trajectory of SKUFL’s contributions as a music artist, producer, songwriter and graphic designer has been largely erratic, somewhat misplaced at times. With sprinkles of his production found on a handful of releases by Florida acts such as Will Brennan (“Interest” ft. CUZ Lightyear, Dre Moon & ManMan Savage), Kodiak Fur (“Run The Night”), LTENGHT (“Get Into Something”) and SDot Braddy (“33177”), you would assume that SKUFL was a man trying to hone down on one single talent.
Yet, a quick glance over SKUFL’s Instagram and Soundcloud exudes a totally different outlook, almost an entirely new story altogether. His following is as modest as one could possibly be as a creative, but it’s quite clear that SKUFL’s interest in art stretches across many platforms. In more ways than one, the newest six-track EP, “F*ck I Can Feel Everything”, serves as an official debut for SKUFL. It was a development that provided major perspective, but one could argue that it did not necessarily fill in every void.
Below, we caught up with SKUFL via e-mail, to find out more about his EP.
How did SKUFL come to be as an artist/producer?
SKUFL: When I seen the first Harry Potter book, I didn’t even read it, I just told myself I had to become a wizard. So by my sophomore year in High School, I became a wizard and enrolled in Fruity Loops.
The name, “F*ck I Can Feel Everything”, where does it stem from? Would you say it’s a title that communicates a great deal of relevancy amongst the issues of today?
SKUFL: Been reading a lot of Charles Bukowski and tapping into my feelings. It’s more-so of an personal awakening of emotional intelligence and consciousness.
What influenced you to do an EP like this? Is there a specific theme or perhaps message you wish to deliver from within?
SKUFL: If my music doesn’t represent my truest emotions accurately, then I’m failing you and most importantly, myself. Last year was a rollercoaster for me, it felt like someone threw me inside a dryer and set it to tumble high, then low, high then low. When I create, I need to be able to use that as fuel and express myself vibrantly and not cover it up. My message is real simple, stop being a p*ssy and tell the world how you really feel! When you crash your girl’s car, go in serious debt, lose direction with your music, swim through mental breakdowns, depressive moods and experience a true midlife crisis at the age of 25, yeah there’s a lot going on that’s not being spoken on.
All of the songs on the EP were produced, written and arranged by you. What fuels that creativity? How do you preserve your artistic integrity in a state like Florida?
SKUFL: Life, and striving to be raw and unapologetic. It’s too easy to preserve your artistic integrity here, everyone and everything is so spread out which let’s everyone be in their own little worlds, it’s both good and bad.
“When I create, I need to be able to use that as fuel and express myself vibrantly and not cover it up.” – SKUFL
Alongside your work as an musician, you have also shown your capabilities as a graphic designer. How do you mesh these two worlds together? What challenges do you face?
SKUFL: Steve Jobs said to connect the dots, so I’m just connecting the dots. The only challenges I face is when my ideas surpass my own actual skills and/or tools, but I still manage my ways around that because anything is possible.
On “Cuban Around My Neck”, were those echoes of burden and desolation? What advice can you give to those trying to juggle the role of a DIY artist alongside real life demands?
SKUFL: Man, “Cuban Around My Neck” is so honest and accurate with my emotions. No fake sh*t, no diamonds dancing around me, just real life sh*t! I made that song the same night my girl and I were having a conversation on a car ride about my stress and depression because of my sh*tty situation. I remember her saying, “your stress is showing, your sad, it’s affecting your mood and my mood and I don’t want it to affect your music”. Well it did! It did in a great way, because that same night I got on the keys and my first few lines were “I know I’m depressing, I know it’s reflecting”.
It was like my apology for being such a dark cloud, because I wear all my emotions on my sleeve no matter how hard I try to hide it. But then, I sauce it up with “I just wanna’ feel special” and make my “neck glow” because at the end of the day, a fat cuban chain around my neck would make my soul feel very much alive. And like a little kid pointing at the next man, I add the lines “like his neck glow”. These were really, really special emotions I captured, and it’s where I want to take my music. Whether I’m on a heavy beat or my Bon Iver-type ballads, you can only capture emotions like that if you pay close attention to yourself.
“My advice is to stay off the Internet.” – SKUFL