BUDDY: Coasting

18-Year-old Simmie Sims III is just like every other college student in his school.  He walks into class everyday sleep deprived, likes to kick it with his homies, except his manager is Scott Vener, the Music Supervisor for “Entourage” and “How to Make it in America”, and Buddy occasionally flies out to Miami to work with super producer Pharrell. Wait, what?

Words: Jason Weintraub

It has to be surreal to have one of the biggest producers of all time chilling on your roof, during a video shoot, but for Compton emcee Buddy, this is just everyday life. Being deemed the protégé of Pharrell, from the outside looking in, it probably appears that Buddy is an overnight success. However, Buddy would tell you different. “I[‘ve] been working really hard and doing this for awhile. [In] Sixth grade I wanted a laptop so bad, but my mom didn’t think I was ready, so she got me a mini Mac. I hooked it up to a HP screen and I made my first little mixtape, and it was called Up and Coming. Now that I listen back to it, it sounds horrible, but it’s authentic.”

Horrible or not, the work ethic and hustle mentality of Buddy cannot be denied, leading him to Pharrell’s new I Am Other record label and meeting the hit-maker in the first place. “My manager Scott Vener is good friends with Pharrell and he played him some of my old videos. We use to do videos and edit them on iMovie, just hustling and self-promotion. He ended up really liking them, and the next thing I know, I’m in the studio, in Miami with him. It happened so fast.”

Without time to even soak up the life changing events, Buddy found himself in the studio with Pharrell already working on material. During the writing process for his debut single “Awesome Awesome”, Buddy says that he hit the ground running, working with Skateboard P, and hasn’t looked back. “It’s pretty crazy because that was the first song we ever did together. It was the first time I went to Miami and worked with him. He already had the beat and had it already mapped out, and we just knocked it out.”

Buddy isn’t just having studio sessions with Pha-real though; Chuck English, Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar are just some of the names he’s currently working with, as he prepares for the release of his mixtape Idle Time.  As if having one-half of The Neptunes cosign you wasn’t enough—Scott Vener is no slouch either— Buddy says working with his hometown neighbor was just as inspiring. “I was in the studio with Kendrick not too long ago, that’s the big homie.  He’s pretty cool and we both rep the city. The way he thinks is so motivating and inspiring, it’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen. He’s amazing!”

Since being signed in 2009, Buddy has been writing incessantly for two years and is now finally seeing his work spread. After appearing on the How To Make It In America 2 mixtape and releasing “Bell Ring”, his latest single, word on the street is spreading just as fast. As an 18-year-old Compton emcee, you may be surprised the first time you hear him spit. While the context of his tracks are simple, his unique style and tone are appealing. To Buddy, he’s still got a long way to go. While the early accolades are great, he believes that he hasn’t quite evolved into a complete artist just yet. “Where I’m at right now, I don’t think I can classify myself, because I’m still growing. I classify myself through my music and I make songs that are pretty much autobiographical. Hopefully, I get to a point where I can define myself and perfect my craft.”

Right now, Buddy’s main goal is simply getting his voice out, letting the world get a feel for his music, style and what he’s all about (His songs are mostly dominated by topics any college kid could relate to, like school, girls and bullshitting). There is no planned date for his mixtape or for his debut album. Buddy just wants to have fun, doing what he loves, for himself and his peers. “It’s a good time! As long as they listen to my song and leave happy, sad, upset, or some kind of emotion and they connect to it, that’s all I ask. I just want to be heard!”

Follow Buddy on Twitter, @MeltsloveBuddy

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