March 18, 2010

Bruno Mars and Phillip Lawrence

Bruno Mars

Bruno Mars

Phillip Lawrence

Phillip Lawrence

Bruno Mars and Phillip Lawrence - the songwriting duo behind the hit song, "Nothing on You" by B.o.B. - talk to "On the Come Up" about their growing success.

What was your inspiration for "Nothing on You?"

Bruno and Phillip: Honestly, at the time, we were both having some relationship issues and really wanted to express a point to our girls. We wanted to show an honest portrayal that, although there are beautiful girls all over the world, they have nothing on them. Originally, the song was called "We Don't Love Dem Hoes. Please Believe Me!!" Haha! But, I don't think radio would've played that. On the production side, Ari Levine (the Silent Bob of "The Smeezingtons") had programmed a drum loop with a real, old school Hip Hop feel. Bruno hopped on the piano and started playing. It's amazing how far four chords can take you. Simplicity, which is what we always strive for, is the hardest thing to capture. But, I think we did it with this one. It also doesn't hurt to have an amazing artist, like B.o.B, write and deliver incredible verses.

What are you working on, currently?

Bruno and Phillip: We just got signed to Atlantic Records, so we're in the studio recording our debut album. So, look out for Bruno Mars' music. It will be our opportunity to show the world our artistry. Of course, we're also going to continue writing and producing for other artists.

Where are you from, originally?

Bruno and Phillip: From Mars, duh. OK, Bruno is originally from Oahu, Hawaii and I'm [Phillip] from Evansville, Indiana.

Who is your musical mentor and why?

Bruno and Phillip: Ironically, we both grew up in very musical families, so I'd have to say that's where our musical education and encouragement came from. My dad used to be a DJ, so as a kid, we had access to all sorts of music. And Bruno's family being from Hawaii gave him a really diverse mix of Reggae, Rock, Hip Hop, and R&B. So, our inspiration is kind of all over the place, but I think it really helps us as songwriters to understand how to capture an authentic sound for many different genres.

What was your first introduction into the music industry?

Bruno and Phillip: We celebrated our first #1 last year with Flo Rida's "Right Round." So, in our eyes, that made it official.