Living Life Large in Lubbock
West Texas Local Returns to Lubbock to Raise a Family & Start a Career
As a lifetime Texas local, Byron Smith, also known as Booga Bradshaw, has repped the 806-area code both in his music and lifestyle — even during his time spent living in other cities. As years passed, Smith nurtured and grew two profitable careers and a family, yet he still found himself craving something more. He dreamt of his return home, his return to Lubbock. After years spent away from the “Hub City,” this goal-driven local ultimately followed his heart home to launch his business and raise his family.
“I decided to move back because it’s in the middle of everything and near my family,” said Smith. “Being in the ‘Hub City’ and working with LEDA (Lubbock Economic Development Alliance) made it possible to meet the people that I’ve met. I don’t think I would have been able to do that in a smaller town or a different setting. Lubbock has offered me a lot of opportunities that put me in the mindset to want to continue my life here.”
Growing up, Smith turned hard work and skill into a college sports scholarship, where a basketball injury would fortuitously end his career as a college athlete, and allow him to find his talent for making music. Later, Smith would channel his creativity into an entrepreneurial venture. Through combining and building upon his tech know-how, his love of the community, and experience as a professional musician, Smith would eventually also launch the youth development and adult improvement institution, The Heir Academy.
Anyone who knows Smith will tell you his lifestyle is an active one, spent juggling multiple careers and a family — in deciding to return home, he sought a community that could equally support his family, as well as his careers.
A powerful force on stage and a fun-loving family man behind the scenes, Smith values time with his two daughters, enjoys living near extended family and the small-town feel of Lubbock. His family also appreciates the great climate and year-round opportunities for outdoor fun.
“My daughters love being active. My oldest, who is nine, plays a lot of basketball,” said Smith. “My two-year-old really enjoys hitting the playground at the park. Like me, she loves music and likes watching dance videos on YouTube. When we’re not training or traveling, they both enjoy going to places like Altitude Trampoline Park, or out for ice cream anywhere in town.”
As for his idea of a good time in “Hub City,” Smith said, “For a young cat, I’m not so much into the nightlife scene. But I like to watch my friends perform at comedy events and music concerts. I have fun with visual artists and friends at paint days and I really love spending time with my two young daughters. If we’re not home cooking or doing puzzles, we’re out eating, bowling, playing in the park or on the basketball court having family fun. The 806 has a lot of family-friendly things to do, and it’s only expanding.”
For Smith, his time performing on stage in Lubbock was focused on encouraging everyone to follow their dreams regardless of age, gender or race. With lyrics that inspire people to lock in, focus and be open minded, his music conveyed that to change things together, people must change the way they think. Smith sees this attitude reflected in the “Hub City.”
“The people of Lubbock work together as an ecosystem of resources, from sound studios and expert professionals, to individuals at Texas Tech University and LEDA,” said Smith. “LEDA has helped me numerous times, with advice and opportunities to reach new fans and audiences. It’s a big thing for artists to have these types of organizations to provide support and exposure.”
Part of the appeal of Lubbock for Smith is that residents can take a chance and do what they love. Smith found his inspiration from his previous experiences to launch his startup, The Heir Academy. The advent of this organization, he says, is ultimately in conjunction with his vision to uplift others.
“I’m committed to putting myself out there to share ideas and find solutions, and the opportunity to give back has always been my life goal,” said Smith. “That’s why I launched The Heir Academy, one of the first digital self and wealth growth platforms in the area.”
The motivation to create The Heir Academy was inspired by the idea that the true wealth gap is the gap that lies between knowledge and ignorance. It’s also based on Smith’s belief that legacy means nothing if not coupled with education.
“The core mission at The Heir Academy is to provide easy access to education such as self-love, financial literacy and social awareness early on in life,” said Smith. “We understand that youth is the future, so we also provide adult improvement courses and curriculum to make sure the kids have accurate and powerful guidance for growth.
“Ultimately creating a stronger and smarter economy and society, creating positive growth opportunities for all. It was a great experience to start this business here, addressing the same things I talk about in my music, what I care about and have lived through.”
The Heir Academy offers curriculum, quizzes, discussion opportunities, guest speakers, films and other events to assist members. They also provide expert advice from educators, realtors, bankers and legal experts to equip underserved individuals with a financial education to uplift them, their families and futures.
This West Texas visionary sets goals as fast as his rhymes, which is why he has big plans for the future of his career, family and community through The Heir Academy. For Smith, it will all happen right here in Lubbock.
“As fast as we are growing, I see the Lubbock of the future in competition with some of the biggest cities in the U.S.,” said Smith. “I believe in our city and I see us doing huge things in the next five years.”
Smith is more than a hip-hop talent, entrepreneur and a fan of his hometown. He’s a father, a neighbor and an advocate for positive change in his community.