Black Eyed Peas “BEP Empire” (2000)

DJ Premier: “I remember when we did that; Steve Stoute was here because he was overseeing their project for Interscope before he started doing branding stuff for artists. I remember when I played the beat for them, and [Steve Stoute] came into the room, and said, ‘Aww, man, ya’ll got to rhyme hardcore to this beat.’ And Will and them were like, ‘We ain’t hardcore. We are who we are.’ Then Steve said, ‘Yeah, but that beat is hardcore.’ I was like, ‘Yo, Steve, let them do what they do, man.’ I like the fact that Steve thought it was raw, and he liked it, because I got to please him as well. But lyrically, let them do what they do. And they did a good job. I even liked the infomercial video they did.

“We toured with [Black Eyed Peas] in ’98 at the Smokin' Groove Tour. I remember seeing them dancing their ass off. They usually just have like a jazz drummer, a bass player, and that was it. They’ll have a horn player, and they’ll do all these crazy Scatman dances. With the crazy clothes, and killing it. And nobody in the audience was there by the time they were on. It was so early in the show. But they were real cool, and we never acted funny with them. We always treated them with love, and never changed on them. Now look at them; they’re huge. I’m proud of them.”

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