This House Music act from Chicago consists of Rees Urban & Brian Boncher, collectively producing as Rubb Sound System. These two teamed up to form RSS debuting with their remix for Jamie Principle’s “Baby Wants To Ride” released on S&S Records. Fusing Soulful House grooves, chunky drums, and deeper elements they have developed a distinguished sound yet staying true to their Chicago roots. With several releases already out and many more already signed, Rubb Sound System is gaining recognition quickly in the House Music community.
Q&A by S&S
S&S: What’s your style of music? How do you describe it?
Rubb Sound System: House to keep it simple but dabbling in variety of subgenres: soulful, deep, sometimes techy. Recently we’ve been working on some traditional Chicago tracky sounding stuff as well. You never know which direction a turn might take while crafting something but a general blanket of House in the traditional sense would work.
S&S: Who or what was most instrumental to you when it came to music?
Rubb Sound System: Having a sound that embraces Chicago but is still our own & making sure to sound current but not trendy yet still authentic to our roots. Often we like to take a more musical approach since we have been doing a lot of vocal projects but others a stripped down, raw take on a track. The same formula doesn’t always work for everything, so you have to be versatile in order to make things work. Sometimes less is more. There has to be some type of emotion or vibe in the music for it to make sense & to create a meaningful project.
S&S: What drives you creatively?
Rubb Sound System: Crowd response when playing our music at gigs. Seeing the feedback & response from crowd foremost and our peers as well. It’s really about trying to put a out a quality product, which is best summed up by seeing the crowds reaction first hand. There’s no better feeling than seeing someone (or a crowd) really get into something you’ve made, you can’t put a price tag on that.
S&S: How much does your audience influence you and your music selection?
Rubb Sound System: Entirely. Obviously you hope you don’t walk into a clueless crowd. More times than not people know what they’re there for, so it’s really about catering to the dancefloor based on what music you have and the reaction of the previous songs in your set or even the music the DJ has played before you. We like to play new music and try breaking boundaries while still providing the core elements that the crowd or room is seeking.
S&S: What artists or genres do you listen to when you’re not working?
Rubb Sound System: For House some of our favorites are Joey Negro, Jimpster, Richard Earnshaw, Grant Nelson & Deetron off the top of the head. A lot of Soulful & Deep stuff. Aside from House we listen to a lot Jazz, Downtempo and Disco stuff.
S&S: Is there anything you would like people to know about you?
Rubb Sound System: We make music because it’s in our soul and it’s what we really enjoy doing. For us it’s not about fortune or fame, it’s all about the love of music, as cliche as that may sound. We feel blessed to have the ability to create new music and have a go at our interpretations of other artists music as well… We’ve both been DJing for around 20 years each, so we’re not new to any of this although many people may think we’re newcomers. Brian is the quiet one & Rees is slightly more erratic if you will. We’re kinda like the odd couple, so it works. Brian teaches music production & DJ classes at IV ThinkLab & Rees works for House Music publication 5 Magazine & at Primary Nightclub all here in Chicago.
Oh, we really enjoy Tito’s vodka. – You know anyone there?!
Also, people with Laptops and controllers should fuck off until we’re done with our set. If you stand behind us like your ready to hump us we’ll take your RCAs and wrap them around your fucking neck. – Just Kidding =)
S&S: Are there any questions that you wish people would ask you?
Rubb Sound System: Not really. This is our 1st interview, so no annoying ones yet!
S&S: And on the flip side of that, are there any questions or references you wish people would stop asking or using?
Rubb Sound System: Asking us for free music all the time. It’s not going to kill you to support once in a while. Music isn’t even expensive these days and most people still don’t wanna buy it. We spend a lot of time on our music and we treat it like a job. Little stuff like supporting by buying music means a lot.
S&S: What artist(s) have you been the most excited to work with?
Rubb Sound System: All of them because everyone brings something different, it’s nice to have different outlets & people with different visions – it keeps things fresh, exciting and fun – everything that making music should be. Aside from that, the fact that we’ve gotten to remix records for a lot of the Chicago icons, our influences. That’s not something everyone can say and in a short period we’ve had the opportunity to remix tracks & productions by Steve Silk Hurley, Marshall Jefferson, Frankie Knuckles, Lil’ Louis, Farley Jackmaster Funk, Jamie Principle, Curtis McClain, Armando & DJ Deeon. We’re really looking forward to what the future has in store!
S&S: Are there any artists that you dream of working with on a collaboration?
Rubb Sound System: Joey Negro ranks high on the list but there are so many amazing people out there creating music, we just wanna work with other like minded artists that have something to bring to the table at the end of the day.
S&S: What can we look forward to next from you?
Rubb Sound System: Well, our remix album Rubb Down is out now on S&S (At the time of this interview it’s the #1 selling album on all of Traxsource!) We have a single called ‘All I Want’ on Guesthouse, regular releases on Jackinthebox, a bunch of new remixes for (Phuture) Trax Records and hopefully an ongoing relationship with S&S as well, as we already have a couple more remixes slotted!
S&S: What legacy would you like to leave?
Rubb Sound System: That we can touch people with timeless music that will be remembered & played in the years to come. We strive to be not just another flash in the pan, trendy type. We want to make quality music that touches people’s souls and leaves them with something to remember & feel good about. We’d like to be remembered for making music that we love for others to love. Music for people to free themselves from the everyday trials and tribulations of life and enabled them to go to ‘that place’. The one where you lose all worries and are carefree. Rubb Sound System was founded for the sole purpose of creating music from our hearts. Our mission is to make music the best we can with the talents and resources given.