The Far East Movement, the hip-hop group known for chart-topping hits like 'Rocketeer' and 'Like a G6' used to intern at Interscope Records -- a gig that included making copies and fetching coffee and lunch for the higher ups.
Fortunately, their musical persistence paid off. The Far East Movement was picked up by Cherrytree Records in 2010, and the quartet have been cranking out catchy tunes ever since. Their fourth album, 'Dirty Bass,' dropped this year.
We caught up with Far East Movement's Kev Nish, Prohgress, J-Splif, and DJ Virman to discuss the latest in their worlds, including pushup contests with now-on-hiatus LMFAO and tracking down a Miss World contestant.
You guys recently toured with LMFAO. What was it like to be on the road with them?
Prohgress: Pretty mellow. Actually, we drank tea and talked about current events.
Kev Nish: You know, we watched CNN. It was wild being on the road with them. It was cool being with them in other countries because we kind of felt we grew up together. We were doing the same clubs out in Hollywood, out in L.A. and they were kind of the reason we got noticed by Cherrytree to get a record deal. They put us on our first tour, so it's cool to be here three years later doing what we're doing together.
Any interesting stories?
Kev Nish: They do push-up contests. There's like random people walking through our dressing room butt-naked with nothing but a helmet on.
Those are their people?
Kev Nish: We don't know who was under the helmets. It's a little weird. But it's all family. We joke around a lot. We'll bust into each other's locker rooms and just start spraying it down with champagne or whatever. It's really rowdy. This all goes down after the show.
When's the push-up contest?
Kev Nish: Well, see, Redfoo [of LMFAO] actually started it. He wanted to get everyone on a workout plan so they do this thing where everyone in the crew has to do 200 pushups, and you’re all on a text thread and you text each other, “I'm done, I'm done!”
So it's motivation. You see Redfoo finished, Shuffle Bot finished… “I better do my pushups!” It's motivation for everybody to get worked out and get that “I'm sexy and I know it” on.
So you're not all in the same room? You just commit to doing these 200 pushups wherever you are?
Kev Nish: It's funny ‘cause you'll be walking like at the airport and you'll look over and you'll see somebody at their gate doing push-ups and you're like, “Hey, I see you.” It's a constant thing -- at restaurants, libraries, on stage. Oh yeah, they did push-ups behind us while we were doing our set.
We saw on Facebook that there’s a video of a Miss World contestant singing 'Rocketeer.'
Kev Nish: She deserves to win for just having the amazing courage to do that and for actually singing 'Rocketeer' better than we can.
So she did the song justice?
Kev Nish: Oh, hell, yeah. We want to try to book her for a gig and bring her out as a surprise guest. We have a gig coming up in the Philippines so that would be the ultimate thing.
Is she from the Philippines?
Kev Nish: She was Miss Philippines. So we were gonna bring her out and everyone would go crazy.
She doesn’t know this yet?
Kev Nish: No, we're trying to get her information.
You're extending an open invitation on RedBullUSA.com?
Kev Nish: Totally. For Miss Philippines, Miss World.
Have you guys had anyone else cover one of your songs and butcher it?
Kev Nish: No, not butcher it. There was one that really touched our hearts. They were soldiers. They were in the Army in Afghanistan and you could see they were on a break. They were in their barracks, in the desert and they were like, “Let's have a freestyle session,” and the soldiers started singing 'Rocketeer' and freestyling over it. So we posted that on our Facebook two months ago, and it was heart-warming to see that this song connects the soldiers out there. It was really inspiring.
When you're not doing the music thing, do you guys have any hobbies?
Kev Nish: No, we're pretty boring. We're these super business guys, so we're on our computers designing merchandise and working our touring. We do everything pretty much in house, so we're constantly those grinders.
Do you design all your own clothes?
Kev Nish: Yeah. Well, all our merchandising with the team. We do all of our set designs -- everything pretty much. We geek out.
Who's the most fashionable in the band?
Kev Nish: J-Splif, by far.
J-Splif: You know, we all try to be as fashionable as possible.
Kev Nish: I'm on an L.A. trip.
DJ Virman: Trying to be comfortable.
What do you call your fashion?
Kev Nish: Dirty Bass... The most fun part is you produce and you write, but to actually bring the song and sounds to life, it's the second thing we love about being artists. It's that visual side. For this album, we're referencing a lot of the classics, so party hip-hop from Beastie Boys, the gold chains, Run DMC, old LL Cool J before he was super buff. It’s like taking that world and bringing it to now, to dance music.
What's the craziest thing you guys have worn on stage?
Kev Nish: DJ Virman wore our big Voltron head on a chain. He actually made a chain of his face. He thought that'd be a good homage to the old school. J-Splif, what's the craziest thing?
J-Splif: The iPad.
Prohgress: He turned an iPad into samplers and he actually did samples and beats on his chest like King Kong. There's been a fake Yeti that's made an appearance on stage.
Kev Nish: Little preppy. Little boring. I'm the boring one.
- Far East Movement home page
- Red Bull Soundstage: Discover Emerging Artists
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