Born in Cincinnati, Ohio Robert "Bigg Robb" Smith started his musical career as a disc jockey dubbed "Sugar Daddy from Cincinnati" for WAIF 88.3 FM at a wee age of 12! Over the next several years he got a chance to meet a long list of R & B stars culminating in a friendship with Roger Troutman. Robb became part of the Zapp & Roger group where he learned his now trademark fuzzy synth Funk style. Eventually he branched out on his own releasing music on his Robb Music imprint. His first disc, a Rap album, "Cheddar Cheddar" is long out-of-print. He also became an in demand producer putting his spin on tracks like Mel Waiter's "Hole In The Wall". He became a recording star in the Southern Soul world on his own with his well received "Grown Folks Muzic" LP in 2002, followed by "The Bigg Woman CD" in 2003. He then assembled a group of young R & B talent an called them Da Problem Solvas.
Starting in 2007 Robb's popularity began to grow exponentially with the release of "8 Tracks & 45s". Since that time he has been one of the biggest selling recording artists in Southern Soul and has been named "Artist Of The Year" in the Blues Critic Awards for Southern Soul two times since 2004.
"Cheddar Cheddar" (Robb Music 2000)
"Grown Folks Muzic" (Robb Music 2002)
"The Bigg Woman CD" (Robb Music 2003)
1. Keepin It Real
Da Problem Solvas "Every Woman Deserves 2 B Satisfied" (Robb Music 2004)
1. Bigg Robb Presents
Bigg Robb & Da Problem Solvas "Merry Christmas From The Bigg Man" (Robb Music 2004)
1. Jesus Is the Reason
For the Season
Bigg Robb & The We Care Allstars "Southern Soul Cares" (Over 25 Sound 2005)
*** You need only slap on a Bigg Robb CD when you need a party started. The Zapp n' Roger alumni has carried on that signature synth/funk sound and this special release gathers some of the best jams released on his Over 25 Sounds label. The impetus behind this comp is Hurricane Katrina hence the title "Southern Soul Cares": a "portion of the proceeds will go to help the victims" of that tragedy. The first single (and new track) "It's Gonna Be Alright" is an instantly familiar midtempo charmer featuring the elastic chops (think Sir Charles Jones) of Bigg Woo (of Da Problem Solvas), Special & more on an extended sing-along chorus. Bigg Robb is a master producer and the sound is clean, tight and smoov as usual. The Southern Soul club smash "The Bigg Robb Freeze" is next fulfillin' yo' line dancin' needs. A real DJ's best friend indeed. Later you'll be 2 steppin' to the "Southern Ladies Remix" featuring Gregory "Uncle Love" Jackson. Bigg Woo returns on "Tune Up" and with Da Problem Solvas on the hits "Grown Folks Music #2" & "The Weekend". Special is front and center on hip-hop flavored "Down South Party" & creepin' "Why You Tryin' To Holla @ Me?". Much like Theodis Ealey's "Let Me Put The Head In It" project, "Southern Soul Cares" is a convincing commercial for these artists and the label in total. Fun stuff here and the earnest premise sweetens the deal.
Bigg Robb "8 Tracks & 45s" (Over 25 Sound 2007)
Bigg Robb Presents "The Best Of Da Problem Solvas" (Over 25 Sound 2007)
1. The Same Thing
(Running Out of Lies Medley)
Bigg Robb Presents "Blues, Soul & Old School" (Over 25 Sound 2007)
1. Intro - Bigg Robb
****1/2 It seems that everything Bigg Robb touches turns to gold. Midas touch? I'm dating myself here. He's also one of the hardest working Southern Soul producers. This is the third release this year. First, "8 Tracks & 45s", then "Best Of Da Problem Solvas" have already hit the street. "Old School" gives a home to Pat Cooley's "Younger Man, Older Woman". It's in there. (like Ragu). Robb's new version of Carl Marshall "Good Lovin' Will Make You Cry". It's in there. "Grown And Sexy", the one with Sir Charles? Yep in there. But that's not all! If you order now you also get the Zappified slow jam "Old School Lovin" by Sure 2 B. Wait! That's not all. We'll also throw in new tracks by Napoleon ("Party Like The Rich Folks"), Special ("Put Your Hands On Me"), Da Problem Solvas ("Pot Liquor N' Cornbread") remixes Bigg Robb on Bigg Robb ("Keep On Swingin", "I'm Ready To Party") and...sound like a commercial. Sorry Bigg Robb does that to me. Buy this CD. Period. No bad tracks.
"Jerri Curl Muzik" (Over 25 Sound 2009)
****This CD could easily be recommended merely on the "Bigg" sound it offers. I can't help thinking that if all albums releases in the much maligned "Southern Soul" genre were as sonically full as this one the music would have it's own spot in Billboard. This CD could also be recommended for it's ability to blend Old School R & B with modern Southern Soul and make it feel Now (same can be said of Stan Mosley's new "I'm Comin' Back" effort). That's true of all of Robb's productions as he is unabashed in his Old School sound, as evidenced by the album titles and past throwdowns ("8 Tracks & 45s" for example). Let's not forget his connection to Zapp & Roger afterall.
"Jerri Curl Muzik" is credited as a "Bigg Robb" album, but there isn't much difference between a so-called Various Artists CD like his previous disc "Blues Soul & Old School" and this new one. Both feature fabulous guest stars. This time out he recruits Omar Cunningham, Archie Love and Larry Cunningham of the Floaters on the great Floaters' hit "Float On". A dazzling, if too faithful, cover highlighted but Love's surprising falsetto- something Archie needs to do more of. The marvelous Carl Marshall sings lead on "I Wouldn't Beg". As most of us know Robb had expertly remixed Marshall's hit "Good Lovin' Will Make You Cry" on "Blues Soul & Old School" (and Robb returns the favor by singing on a track on the new Marshall album "Look Good For You" as well). The Bar-Kays are found on the Fun-Kay title jam. There's also Shirley Murdock, Sir Charles Jones, Kurtis Blow and others on board.
The star of course is the persona of Bigg Robb, producer, main songwriter and ringleader of a collection of "Grown Folks" music or, excuse me, "Jerri Curl Muzik". There's almost too many potential hits here. The official first single was "The Recipe", which borrows that loping baseline from Johnnie Taylor's "Careless With Our Love". The aforementioned "Float On" is starting to ascend on radio. There's also a couple notable message songs found on this collection. The bump "If I Get Drunk" is dedicated to "everybody who likes to get your drink on..." but flips the script right away by revealing itself to be a heartening call against drunk driving. Sample lyric: "Going down to the club to have a real goodtime/And party all night long...but if I start looking like I'm tore up y'all/Somebody take my keys and don't let me drive." Robb brings the party music but he cares too! With too much playa hatin', jealousy, hustlin' and what-have-you in the circuit Robb is all about bringing us all together as a "southern soul family". Meanwhile on "Any Man Can Make A Baby" Robb delivers a great slow jam reaching out to fathers to rise above the "baby mama drama" and handle your business. Add this to the relentless ear and booty candy on this CD and you got his masterpiece. On the spoken intro he exhorts listeners to not "let sad times or bad times get you down" and he proceeds to his darndest to lift your mood.
"Grown Folks Gospel: Songs Of Encouragement" (Over 25 Sound 2010)
1. Welcome from BiggRobb
"Soul Prescription" (Over 25 Sound 2010)
"Bigg Robb Presents Juke Joint Music" (Over 25 Sound 2012)
1. Juke Joint Intro
"Think Bigg" (Over 25 Sound 2013)
**** The Bigg man delivers again. It's a grown folks party with every Bigg Robb joint. Great bumpers ala "Fill It Up" and "Get A Room". One midetempo toe-tapper has become a bone of contention. Bishop Bullwinkle used the backing track of "Looking For A Country Girl" for his colossal smash "Hell Naw To The Naw Naw". As of writing there's no outcome to pending litigation. One of the best cuts is the Funky, grinding, frantic "Booty Pop". On the slow tip Robb does a great re-tooling of Latimore's "Let's Straighten It Out" (sorta like he did with Carl Marshall's "Good Lovin' Will Make You Cry"). The only minor gripe I have is that the vocoder vocals tend to become just too much sometimes.
"Showtime" (Over 25 Sound 2015)
**** Best selling CD in our CD Store's history is another instant grown folks party soundtrack. First song out of the gate was his hit duet with Denise LaSalle for "Blues & BBQ". The follow up, the bouncin' "Gettin' It In", was even stronger with an irresistible hook. It is undoubtedly influenced by Clarence Carter's "Strokin'" musically. He even talks the verses like Carter. "Please Don't Judge Me" is a poignant, uplifting story song. I'd say it's a Gospel song. After a gig a woman asks Robb to pray with her as her life is in turmoil and she unwittingly started dating a married man. Then a homeless man tells Robb his hard luck story. Robb says to stay strong and tell 'em "Please don't judge me/If you're not walking in my shoes/Please don't judge me/God ain't finished with me yet". It's truly an inspired concept for a song. Not one you'd see coming a mile away. Elsewhere: The title cut is a slow, sexy bedroom jammy and the album is also filled out with several hot remixes including "Sugaa Shack (Extra Long Remix)".
"Got My Whiskey Party" (Over 25 Sound 2016)
1 Got My Whiskey
*** This album effectively collected various single releases and remixes over the past twelve months released as downloads. Nevertheless, "Got My Whiskey Party" doesn't sound like a collection of un-matching parts but works as a cohesive album. "Party N' Step" was one of the new tracks cut for the album and ignited some dance floors in the South. It does repeat some tracks from other albums so I can't say this is as essential as his other albums.
"Born 2 Do This" (Over 25 Sound 2017)
1 Born (Intro)
"Good Music" (Over 25 Sound 2019)
Robb Loves U
"Smooth Grown & Sexy" (Over 25 Sound 2020)
and Sexy Jazz
"Fantastic" (Over 25 Sound 2021)