Rocks Off had a feeling that last night was going to be a good night when we checked out Fresh Entertainment's "The Power of the DJ" show at Reign Lounge on Washington. With DJ Motiv8 of the Black Eyed Peas headlining the event, beats were bumpin' from start to finish.
Presented by Fresh Entertainment, DJ Tony Styles of 104.1 KRBE got the party started by doing what he does best; spinning some of the hottest tracks and names in hip-hop today. DJ New York followed up by adding some reggaeton into the mix. Then came Motiv8, fresh off a four-month tour in Europe.
Though you'd think he would be tired of playing the Peas, that didn't stop Motiv8 from opening up with a couple of tracks from the group's last album, The E.N.D. Along with partner in crime Rhett RhFactor, Motiv8 showed his range when he deviated from hip-hop into mash-ups and Latin sounds like reggaeton and salsa - heck, he even threw in a little swing just to change things up.
Before he hit the tables, Rocks Off sat down with Motiv8 for a short Q & A.
Rocks Off: Now that you're back in the States, can you reflect a little on your tour in Europe?
DJ Motiv8: I was over there for four months, and it was actually really great. I think a lot of DJs from America should go and see how Europe is, because the crowds are really crazy and there are very packed places. Europe is definitely interesting because it's got history. I love being there, I liked it.
The hardest part was traveling from LA to Italy; and then staying there and being away from your family. It gets really hectic.
RO: What is the difference between America and Europe?
DJM: In America, when you need something, boom, it happens. Over there, everything is more laid-back and sometimes takes a little longer.
What really makes a difference is the history in buildings, that's the interesting thing about Europe that is different from America. America is all new, Europe has all the history. I got to see a lot of interesting buildings; we got some interesting buildings in America, but it's a different thing.
RO: What country in Europe was your favorite?
DJM: Portugal. That country is crazy; those kids are crazy over there. I love going to Lisbon, though.
RO: What do you like about Houston?
DJM: I just got here today, a couple of hours ago. I think my plane landed at 7:30, so I haven't seen anything. But hey, that airport you guys have is pretty impressive; that's the only thing I've seen so far.
RO: Do you play DJ Hero?
DJM: No, because my gear is like DJ Hero. DJ-ing on the technology that they have today is kinda very easy. I've never tried it though; I've seen the setup and was like, "What? What is this?"
RO: Can you reflect on your career with the Black Eyed Peas?
DJM: What makes it interesting is that I've been with them since they were like 16, 17 years old. We've always been friends, so it's been like growing up with your younger brother. It's a real family; it's not like what you see on TV.
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None of us in Black Eyed Peas have father figures, so that's what brought us together and kept us together so long. Being a mentor to these guys and seeing them grow up was an experience. I knew will.i.am had talent, but I had no idea it would zoom to the magnitude that it is today. It's more than an honor; it's like seeing something grow up. It's a dream come true.
RO: What's one thing Houston doesn't know about DJ Motiv8?
DJM: Probably a lot of people don't know I'm married. We met because apl.de.ap of the Black Eyed Peas was graduating from high school, and her friend was the girlfriend of apl.de.ap at the time. I was introduced to her in 1993 in an underground hip-hop club by apl.de.ap.
Motiv8 will be at it again tonight when he takes his tunes over to TOC Bar downtown.