Brandon Schottmiller has always had an appreciation and love of music. It started at a young age. He can’t remember exactly when his love of hip hop started because he feels like it was always a part of him.
Today, he records his music in his own home, in a studio he designed.
“It’s always been my belief that when you want something, you go after it and do it yourself,” he said.
So at an early age, he began building his own destiny. He decided when he was in high school that he was going to take a shot at creating a space of his own where he could be in control of his recording sessions.
Recording sessions are necessary for artists in order to get their music “out there,” or out to the public. However, recording sessions can cost hundreds of dollars per session, depending on the type of studio.
“As a high school student, I didn’t have that kind of money,” Schottmiller said.
Schottmiller knew that he wanted to have access to recording his music when he chose and where he chose. This led to his decision to design and set up his own home studio.
Music has always motivated him. However, he says he doesn’t have any specific artists in mind when he thinks about who inspired him most.
“It’s just the music itself that gives me a feeling like no other feeling in the world.”
Schottmiller says he finds it difficult to put in words, but he has always been moved by what he sees when he listens to or watches a performance.
“I have always been inspired by what I see when I see other artists perform. Seeing and hearing the crowd sing the songs over the music gives me chills every time.”
He admits that this, and not just the ability to make extra income on the side, is what led him to open up his studio to other artists to record their music, especially his Norristown clients.
Schottmiller realized that there were plenty of others in Norristown with the same passion and abundance of talent for hip hop.
“Norristown is underappreciated in my opinion. For a while, no one in Norristown wanted to come together, and no one outside of Norristown knew about the talent we have here,” he said.
He believes that this is beginning to change. It seems as if there is a culture of hip hop music in Norristown today that is working hard to make a name for the small town.
Schottmiller discussed the difference from being from a smaller town like Norristown and trying to get recognition for your music compared to the chances of notability in a big city like Philadelphia.
“Philly is a big place. You could be ‘poppin’ in Philly without being ‘poppin’ everywhere else. I don’t think you could do that in Norristown,” Schottmiller says.
It doesn’t bother him that Norristown artists do not have the same opportunities as artists in Philadelphia, who have a larger venue. Schottmiller believes that it is often about fate.
“You never know who could get famous out of nowhere nowadays,” he says.
As a matter of fact, Schottmiller believes that Norristown’s time is coming soon.
“I like seeing the different rising talent. I hear a lot of different styles, and I see a lot of people just starting out. I also know people who have been making music for years. I encourage it all honestly,” he says.
It is the different styles that he hears and uses in his own music which help him to value it all.
“I think my style would best fit under the category of new school hip hop or alternative hip hop. Some of my songs are rap, but most of my music is half singing and half rapping.”
One thing Schottmiller knows for sure is that the craft requires commitment of time.
“I have a few unreleased songs, but no big projects on the way yet. I always do this though. I make music, then I take a long break and drop a bunch of music again,” he says.
Although he is not sure when he will release more music, he encourages those who are interested to explore what Norristown hip hop artists have to offer.
Brandon Schottmiller can be followed on all his socials @Shotmiller.
Lee Holmes is a fifth-year professional studies major with minors in journalism and business law. BH878969@wcupa.edu