WIB Meets recently had the chance to chat with producer/Dj MentPlus and he was benevolent enough to share with us cool memories, facts and other things besides hip-hop. So keep it locked and go get his Stormy Nights EP because it’s highly recommended.
For the benefit of anyone who’s been living in an underground bunker for the past few years…who on earth are you?
What’s up, I’m Mentplus. I’m a DJ, Producer, Digger, ‘Lo Head…from Brooklyn, NY. Currently living in New Jersey.
How did you get started in music, and what drives you to continue?
I was a DJ for a number of years, and eventually I wanted to make music of my own, so I started to make beats. I have a tendency to push myself to the next level musically, and eventually I started to master my craft. In the long run, I want to be an asset to the Hip-Hop culture, or whatever genre I’m involved with.
Do you remember the first beat you ever made? How did you go about it?
Yes, It was something simple. No samples or anything. Just a basic drum pattern on a old Roland, Dr. Rhythm drum machine that I still own to this day. At that point it was the mid to late ’90s and I was already influenced by so much music. It felt natural to program drums.
If a movie about your life in music was to be made, what interesting/strange moments and stories would you share to make the movie cool?
There’s already a movie loosely based on my life, Juice. Actually there’s a scene in there, that elevator scene with Tupac and Q. To make a long story short, when my beats got stolen by someone who was supposed to be my friend, karma came back to them eventually.
Are there any other interesting facts about you that hardly anyone else knows?
I have a degree in the applied sciences.
What is the greatest thing about working in the music industry? And what would you change if you had the opportunity?
Just the opportunity to share my music with fans all over the world. If i could change one thing, only the truly talented would be heard. Not so called artists who misuse the culture, and don’t elevate it.
Looking back, what have been the most important moments in your life so far?
Competing in beat battles, and meeting really great people in the music industry. Building relationships with other producers and developing my own sound.
What have been the biggest highlights?
Being the opening DJ for Large Professor. Playing beats for Pete Rock and having him giving me props. I must be doing something right.
What has been your biggest challenge…and how did you overcome it?
Trying to balance my day job and music career. It’s an everyday struggle that I have to conquer. I just try to find a balance between the two. Music is my escape.
Who are your heroes? Why do they rock your world?
Pause (laughs). Mr. Len and SUCE (Sucio Smash) for believing in me. They are the foundation, if it wasn’t for them you wouldn’t of heard of MentPlus.
Who have been the coolest, most memorable people you’ve met along the way, and how did they make an impact on your life?
Same answers as before…Mr. Len and SUCE. They took a chance on me and invested into what I was doing to get my music out there.
When you’re sitting on the porch age 97, what would you like to look back on and smile having achieved?
Being happy that I toured the world playing music for people to enjoy. It’s not just a goal, I plan on doing it. I’m focused.
What has been your most memorable or inspirational gig and why?
The first time i got invited to DJ at Motown on Mondays in Los Angeles. It was a great opportunity for me and after that first gig, them inviting me back and telling me that I was doing something right and that I was in the right lane.
What has been your strangest celebrity encounter?
My first job at A&W root beer (which has since closed). I actually took Biz Markie’s order for burgers and fries. That was in 1995.
Who would be your ideal dinner guest, living or dead, and what would you serve them?
I would probably invite Ghostface and Raekwon over for whatever I have in the fridge. ha.
What are the greatest songs, albums, books, movies, TV shows, websites you’ve ever come across?
Greatest song off the top of my head, “SpottiedOttieDopealiscious” by Outkast. As for albums, Illmatic by Nas. My favorite book goes to Behold a Pale Horse by William Cooper. My favorite movie is Roboteck; Clash of the Bionoids. I don’t watch much TV, and my favorite website of course is: www.HighWaterMusic.net
Name 5 songs (yours excluded) that we would expect to find on your iPod or Music Player
- Pete Rock – “The Boss”
- House Shoes – “The Makings”
- The Pharcyde – “Y? (Be like that) (Jay Dee Remix)”
- Gang Starr – “ALONGWAYTOGO”
- Diamond D (feat. Busta Rhymes) – “This One”
What special-hero type skills are you blessed with?
I have the ability to make a room full of people move rhythmically through mental suggestion. Haha.
Where can everyone reading this interview keep up with your adventures?
Here’s where you can find me online…
Instagram : @MentPlus_
Twitter : @MentPlus_
Any final thoughts?
Don’t forget MentPlus is for the children, they are the future. Go get that Stormy Nights EP out now and look out for the LP coming soon. And lastly like I always say support your artists and local record shops. Oh and remember High Water IS Music.