¡Mayday!'s Bernz Talks Strange Music, Tech N9ne, Weed, Whiskey, and Women
|Photo by Derick G|
South Beat Records, the now-dead sex-business record label, placed the breakout music video for its main act -- ¡Mayday! -- on all of its free porn websites. And that's the story of how the hip-hop crew's song "Groundhog Day" got 1.5 million hits overnight.
Point is, Mayday's ascent was never an accident. It has always been calculated, assured, and poised for world domination. And years later, fresh off a 65-city tour caravan with their new label Strange Music, ¡Mayday! will be playing at Transit Lounge August 26. We spoke with MC Bernbiz about life on the road, the new album, and working with TechN9ne.
New Times: How was the tour?
Bernz: It was fuckin' crazy. Absolute insanity. We played a show every night, with one day off every 20 days. Just grinding every day.
House of Blues on the Sunset Strip in L.A. for a sold-out audience was really special. And then there were the places that you wouldn't really expect, like Denver, or Woosta [Worcester], Massachusetts, which was a really crazy show full of crazy juggalos.
What's your reaction to the juggalos?
They're great. I don't have any qualms with them. I think people give them a bad rap. They're just some kids tryin' to have fun, who might sometimes be outcast by all the cool cliques and all, which happens to everybody at some point. But they've been so cool to us and showed us nothin' but love. So for us, they're the shit.
How was the audience response and energy? Did you all start mosh pits and crowdsurfing and shit?
Hell yeah, all that. In Chicago, we had three huge simultaneous pits going at once. When you get out of Miami and even Florida in general, the crowd interaction tends to get rowdier.
Wasup with the new album?
It'll be out early next year. We're actually working on it right now at The Cave, our headquarters right next to Calle Ocho in Downtown.
Is there a concept to it?
Definitely. It's taking from where we left off on the last record, Stuck On An Island. We finally get off the island and see what this world is really all about. We're talking on everything from beautiful women to the passing of friends. The highest of highs and the lowest of lows. But it's definitely painted in a bit of a darker shade than our last one, though.
What was the lowest low?
We lost a friend out in Reno. His name was MJ. He was the MC and hypeman for the tour and one of the coolest dudes we ever met. After the show, there was a shootout and he was killed. We dedicated the whole tour to him as well as a lot of other things we're doing. He was a musician who went out on the road and didn't come back home.
What was the highest high?
Hanging out with TechN9ne and his saying, "I want y'all to produce my next shit."
Hottest girls in America?
Lots of beautiful women everywhere ... I really liked the girls in Austin, Texas. They were southern but still sophisticated with some city vibe to them. But you can't beat the girls from Southern California.
What do you all drink?
Whiskey and tequila, mostly. But on the road, all sorts of shit. Strange Music introduced us to the Ghettosa. That's a ghetto mimosa -- vodka, Sprite, and OJ. And I always have a shot of tequila before I go on stage.
Best weed on the road?
Let me put it this way. We did a show in weed heaven -- Humboldt County, California -- right in the heart of the Emerald Triangle. It was amazing.
When you all leave the island, we're all still here. I see that you still got love for the local artists, though.
Yeah, Miami Beat Wave, Saheed, GhostWridah, J Nics. Between every album we wanna do a mixtape project and get features and remixes and all that.
Wasup with that Bitch, I'm Back!?
Just letting Miami know that we back and down to party. We love Transit. They were the first to really let us do whatever we wanted to do. That's kind of our home for the immediate future.
¡Mayday!. Friday, August 26. Transit Lounge, 729 SW 1st Ave Miami. The party starts at 10 p.m. and it's $10. Call 305-377-4628 or visit transitlounge.us.
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