ESPN’s 30 for 30, Entourage, Cocaine Cowboys 2, The BET Hip Hop Awards, and CSI Miami are just a few of the bigger names Nick Scapa at Honor Roll Music has had the pleasure of working with over the past few years. Nick also contributed a song by one of his artists, ADHDS, for America’s Best Racing to use as the official anthem of the 2013 Florida Derby.
The song is called “Shadowcat” and it does wonders in capturing the electric, Miami-sound that we found perfect for this ABRV tour stop. When I first heard the song I felt like I was back in middle school playing “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City” on Playstation 2, which is exactly what we were going for. Just check out our new Florida Derby “Sizzle Reel” and see for yourself how it plays in to the culture of the South Florida scene…
If you check out the Honor Roll Music website, you can see their esteemed list of clients which stretches from Old Navy commercials to the “Angry Birds” mobile games, to Tyga’s “Rack City” beat. You will also find photos of Honor Roll’s 4,800 square-foot flagship studio in Miami’s Design District.
When I caught up with Nick, it was late in the afternoon because “we literally had Diplo, Skrillex, Boys Noize here (at the Honor Roll Studio) all night,” Scapa said.
In all of my interaction with Scapa, It was through my personal research that I discovered his stage name, Nicky Blitz, who happens to have several songs with thousands of listens on his SoundCloud page with a modern mix of electric sounds and a voice similar to that of David Byrne.
So below I give you my Q&A with Nicky Blitz. Enjoy.
John Cox: Nick, just talk a little about how you started out getting into the music game. Did you play any instruments as a kid or sing? Were any of your family members musicians/in the music business?
Nick Scapa: My parents always played a bunch of different music growing up, we danced a ton. I played everything terribly, never spending enough time on any instrument or practicing the needed amount. My mom “thinks” she can sing and there is a strong emphasis on the word think. No one in my family works in music, I probably should have done real estate.
JC: Where did you go to school and did meeting anyone in college help you get your career going in the right direction?
NS: University of Miami was instrumental in our business. A majority of the people who work with Honor Roll including my partner Read Fasse all graduated from UM.
JC: Who were some artists you listened to growing up? Who are some of your favorite artists now?
NS: Van Morrison, Michael Jackson, Fleetwood Mac, Bill Withers , Tupac. Now I like Beach House, Blur, ANR, Kendrick Lamar, and Radiohead.
JC: What inspired you and your partner, Read, to found Honor Roll? What were some other contributing factors if any? Also, when did you all start the company/label?
NS: We loved making music. Things happened naturally we trusted each other, our instincts and passions. The company and label all started at the same time round 2007.
JC: Did it take you to start getting some of these huge jobs (ie: 30 for 30’s, other TV specials, commercials, other songs)? Or did you have some sort of connection to people at some of these companies?
NS: Business is mainly about relationships. We have been beyond fortunate to meet and work with wonderful and talented people. We had to spend a bunch of time in New York, Los Angeles, and Miami, meeting folks we could work with.
JC: What would you say the biggest accomplishment of your career has been to this point?
NS: Waking up excited every day, that’s a total gift.
JC: Talk a bit more about the record label 10K Islands. Who are some of the artists and what are you looking forward to for the label in the future? Same goes for Honor Roll, what are some other projects you would like to work on but have not had the opportunity to yet?
NS: ANR, PLAINS, EDDIE P, JOHN HANCOCK, KAKANKEE, ADHDS. We are happy to be putting out music that people can enjoy. We would like to reach a broader audience in the future. I’d like to spend more time playing live, it’s a great experience.
JC: What made you want to work with America’s Best Racing on this project for the Florida Derby (besides me bribing you with tickets! Haha)?
NS: Hahahahahahhah, You my friend made us a believer in the company and its purpose. We love working with brands that have great things happening and horses are cool as f*** too. You are also a baller and thanks for the tickets J
JC: If you could work with any other musician, on one project of your choice, who would it be? (Maybe name one living and one dead).
NS: I’d really like to work with Max Martin he’s a total G. If the dead would rise John Lennon would be the one.
JC: If you could meet anyone in the world of thoroughbred horse racing who would it be and why?
NS: No f***ing clue, maybe that polo player Nacho..?
JC: Would you ever have any interest in getting involved as an owner in the thoroughbred industry?
NS: Yeah if I had billions, my Aunt, Holly Scapa, rides and sells horses and it costs a ton.
JC: Do you think that the thoroughbred industry is making the right moves reaching out to successful young people like yourself in order to connect new young fans to the game?
NS: Yeah, we are nice and young and cool and like horses. Let everyone in on the fun.
JC: I think that should do it, really appreciate it.
NS: You’re a true gentleman John it has been a pleasure.