Transforms into Dub Shine & Forms A New Songwriting Partnership
by Brad Balfour
On the surface, music creator Delon Scott Williamson might not seem like someone to be making hot dance music. While he inherited his computer programmer dad’s work ethic, this former Tallahassee, Florida, native re-directed it towards a readiness to make his dreams of music business success come true.
So, when he’s pushing out the music he makes, he goes by the moniker Dub Shine. And why Dub Shine? As he explained, “Dub equals sparse vocals and Shine means bright tracks.”
As Dub Shine, he’s becoming a new voice on the scene, forging a bright example of a recent trend in music — a cool sound that’s chill and hot simultaneously, the blend of house and deep tribal techno genres. Currently, he produces mix shows for East Coast Energy Radio, USA Dance Radio, and mix93fm.
Said Williamson, “My Dad did computer programming, so we had computers around the house, and I was into gaming. He worked on PCs. These days I’m on PC and Mac.
“Thanks to him, I got interested in technology and computers, so electronic music was a natural fit for me. Around age 15 – 1983 – I also got into sci-fi movies such as Star Wars, Star Trek, Alien, etc. and they used futuristic technologies and sounds as well.
“Early on I was influenced by electronic producers and discovered that music is my passion. I got into deejaying since I was always fascinated by electro, house and hip-hop music.”
Thanks to Mike Greenly, a former corporate exec who just happens to be a lyricist, Dub Shine moved on to another level in creating a collaboration of sound and words.
But long before that, he developed a career as a live deejay.
“I got interested in radio mix shows. We used 12” vinyl back then. In my early performances, I did regular block parties with my future brother-in-law, Kevin Sheridan, when that kind of thing was in vogue in the mid to late ’80s. Kevin had the sound system and I had the two turntables, mixing console and my crates of records. We would throw down every summer at my apartment complex on the southside of Richmond or get hired to do parties and weddings all over the place.
“Later on, I performed at club venues in the late 80’s through the early ‘90s. At the time, separated from my first wife, my parents were living in Germany. I went to visit for a few weeks and got a job there with a German I.T. firm contracted with NATO.
“So, I moved to Germany in the late ‘90s and performed as a deejay at various outdoor German festivals with German rap artists like Down Low, Freestyler, Fruendeskreis and Absolute Beginner.
“I teamed up with my brother Shaun (who’s four years older and became lead singer for a Southern Rock band) and super guitarist Kai Portolano and cut demos for a rap/rock project called Silver Bullet Theory. The sound was along the lines of Rage Against the Machine. We never really got it off the ground, but it was fun bonding with my brother, and having a great friendship with Kai who taught me so much about recording with Pro Tools and mixing instruments to sound clean and beefy in the mix.”
He continued, “I met my future wife Fiona in Heidelberg, Germany, a Kenyan-born entrepreneur. She was into the import export business and had a few clothing boutiques in Italy and Kenya at the time. We eventually got married and relocated back to the States, where I soon got in contact with Curtis Urbina for releasing music on his Quark Music Group label. My first release with Curtis was ‘Disco Bitch.’ Fiona has been an inspiration and helped co-produce tracks such as ‘I Am Who I Say I Am’ and ‘Egyptian Spirits’ – both of which hit the number one spot on different record pools and deejay portals.”
All of that, in and of itself, might not warrant any special story other than as a footnote, but their work together has become a perfect example of the state of music creation today: these two are doing all their production remotely. They’ve never met in person, pressed the flesh, or jammed in the same room.
Dub is now based in Los Angeles; Mike is here in the heart of Manhattan. Explained Greenly, “I was introduced to Scott by Curtis Urbina, a friend and business exec now heading the Quark Music Group. He connected us in the belief that we might discover synergy, which is exactly what happened. I’ve now written lyrics to three Dub Shine tracks.”
Williamson takes up his part of the tale. “I would create original dance tracks early on with my little setup. I began collaborating with longtime musical friends and partners on a variety of projects. Eventually, I put out my first 12” record with Pacific Time Entertainment, headed by Urbina – a legend in the dance music world in his own right. This record was called ‘I Want Luv’ and was produced by myself and Tony Fernandez, a DJ/producer. We called ourselves Deep South since we were producing Deep House music tracks.
“I also collaborated with another longtime friend of mine, Scott Baily, on an electronic music project we called Electrosonix. We released a few tracks independently and with IceMedia, plus a few remix projects for other labels in South Florida.”
Later on, Urbina relaunched his classic house label, Quark Records. Quark released dozens of dance tracks over the years – including several in which Greenly had authored the lyrics.
Williamson continued, “Through this venture I’ve met many great artists and songwriters. I have also recruited the production skills of Judd Skinner (known as Dappa Don), who is a great musician, songwriter and sound engineer in Vancouver, Canada. He has worked with many huge stars in hip hop and R&B like TLC and other big names.”
Out of that came the Greenly/Williamson song, “You’re the One,” the team’s first collaboration to get released. The international music label, Bentley Records, put it out on November 4th, 2020.
Headed by award-winning R&B recording artist, singer and songwriter Luca Dayz, this company has the kind of support system which lends the song a possibility of major success.
Once Williamson and Greenly started working together, they came up with tracks which begged for a good vocalist, so they sought her out online as well. Again, in this age of COVID, that work was done remotely.
As Greenly explained, he had co-written the song with Scott and Audrey Martells, an artist and songwriter who had worked with Celine Dion, Mary J. Blige, Jewel, and others. Since she was already committed to other projects, Mike created a video of her initial demo recording with his words and posted it to a private link on YouTube declaring that a singer was needed who could commit time and effort to developing the demo further.
Rochester-based Deborah Magone saw the post and quickly responded. She fell in love with the song and, in fact, is now a partner with Scott and Mike on other songs in development. This multi-hyphenate recalled, “I was actually rushing to get off the computer for an appointment. But I saw a notification pop up on Facebook from our private Grammy group page and it looked interesting. In a rush, without even thinking, I expressed interest and asked if they could please send me the song so I could give it a listen. Then I ran out the door without giving it another thought.
“I’ve been a professional singer, songwriter, guitarist, instructor for a long time trying to go the usual route in the business. For me as a woman, the barriers can still be great and disappointing, especially in the blues rock genre I was in. So, in the past few years, I’ve shifted my focus. I decided I only wanted to work with people who are doing good, positive things globally with their music.”
That decision led to her being invited to play on the soundtrack for “One Little Finger,” a multi award-winning independent film by Rupam Sarma, scored by Quincy Jones and Julian Lennon among a long list of many other talented creatives. Then came an invitation to perform in a weekend concert sponsored by the United Nations Center for Peace.
She noted, “When I heard ‘You’re the One’ I was inspired by the hook, and the positive, empowering energy of the music. I saw in my mind the song’s potential for inspiring others and the overall good feeling the song generated. I contacted them and it was, ‘Game on.’ As I learn more about these two, I discover how much we have similar goals and values. I’m looking forward to a positive, productive collaboration that will have a global impact.”
Added Dub Shine, “When I first started, vocals were sparse and under-tracked. Now working with Mike and Deborah, I enjoy full vocal tracks. I really feel that our project is a winner. It reflects top notch talent and love of the music for sure.”
Dub Shine’s list of recommended dance music makers:
John “Jellybean” Benitez
Arthur Baker and John Robie
And hip hop artists:
Afrika Bambaattaa & The Soulsonic Force
Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five
Kool Moe Dee
Eric B & Rakim
Big Daddy Kane
Copyright ©2020 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: November 28, 2020.
Photo ©2020. Courtesy of Scott Williamson. All rights reserved.