No group hopes to fall into the category of "one hit wonder." Those who are fortunate enough to achieve a certain level of popularity through a hit song wish to maintain that buzz so that they can hopefully produce more hit songs, and hopefully popular albums.
Los Angeles' "electro-hop" group Far East Movement is one of those groups that have had a #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, but have yet to follow up their monster song "Like A G6" with another top 5 song. The album that "Like A G6" is from, 2010's "Free Wired," did yield another solid single with the #7 Billboard Hot 100 song "Rocketeer" but it didn't come close to the aforementioned 2 million-plus selling "Like A G6" in sales or popularity.
Far East Movement, a group that consists of four Asian-American men, also holds the title of being the first Asian-American group to chart a top 10 hit.
Though "Free Wired" has only been able to move around 150,000 units, the group has had the opportunity to work the record on the road with a consistent tour schedule.
On their latest tour, they join platinum and gold artists Lil Wayne, Rick Ross and Keri Hilson for a tour hitting many major markets, including Milwaukee this Tuesday at the Marcus Amphitheater.
As they continue to work with large name artists, both on tour and in the studio, it's yet to be seen whether or not their stock will continue to rise and if they will be able to have real staying power – something that pop acts rarely have because of their novel nature.
But, these four hardworking young men by the names of Kev Nish, Prohgress, J-Spliff and DJ Virman, have the desire and work ethic to do what it takes to remain relevant in today's most disposable art: music.
OnMilwaukee.com: The tour that you are on is a monster, with several gold and platinum artists bringing their hits to the stage. What does it mean to you to be among those hit makers?
Far East Movement: Grateful to be on such of eclectic tour of hit makers. We can remember sneaking into clubs around L.A. and grabbing the mic to try and get gigs. The tour is definitely a mash-up of all the genres we love, just like our album so every night's been cool. Shouts to Lil Wayne and Young Money for inviting us.
OMC: It's been very difficult for Asian-Americans to reach the level that you are currently at and maintaining in music. Why is that?
FM: That stat trips us out. It's definitely an honor to be recognized like that especially 'cause when we make music it's never based on race. We grew up as L.A kids from a generation that messes with everyone so maybe we're in a time where people don't care. When we bump music, we listen and enjoy anything with a different visual or story.
OMC: What do you bring to the table in respect to your performance?
FM: Our live set is "Free Wired." It's live, a mash-up of all the sounds and genres that inspired this album. Whether there is five people or 20,000 people in the crowd, we just zone out and have fun.
OMC: Blending electronica and hip-hop is something that's becoming more and more popular. Why do you think those two genres are fusing together so organically?
FM: They fused for us because of the energy and production. The instrumentals have been rocking raves and festivals for years and with the right words over them it makes a fulfilling song to us. More and more artists and fans have both genres in their playlists so the demand for the mash up is there.
OMC: What is the best thing about being on such a big tour? What is the worst?
FM: Sharing the stage with amazing acts and the catering is the best part. The worst is the high security restrictions, which make sense with headlining acts. But, we got fam in every city that we try and look out for and can't. The security is cool folks though. If we had our own headlining tour we'd bring them out.
OMC: What music do you have in the pipes right now that fans can look forward to?
FM: We just released our homage to the Beastie Boys called "So What" where we sampled their song "So Whatcha Want" and flipped our sound on it. To us, they are that group that pushes the limits on what people hear and see. They changed culture, so we were excited to put this out as a single and thanks to them for letting us. We've got a studio bus on tour with us, so we've been recording non-stop. We recently got in the studio with Will.I.Am, Pitbull, David Guetta, Benny Benassi and more so some new stuff is brewing, but for now we need the fam bumpin' that new "So What."
Born in Milwaukee and raised in the Milwaukee suburb of Brown Deer, Concordia University Wisconsin alumnus Poppe has spent the majority of his life in or around the city and county of Milwaukee.
As an advocate of Milwaukee's hip-hop community Poppe began popular local music blog Milwaukee UP in March 2010. Check out the archived entries here.
Though heavy on the hip-hop, Poppe writes about other genres of music and occasionally about food, culture or sports, and is always ready to show his pride in Milwaukee and Wisconsin.