Million Dan - Photo by Acer One TCF
Interview with Million Dan/Mike J
of The Legendary "Demon Boys"
Demon Boys Logo
Million Dan aka Mike J first exploded on the scene as kid - as a member of the groundbreaking UK ragga hip-hop outfit The Demon Boyz. Anyone who knows anything about UK Hip hop will tell you about legendary Tottenham crew The Demon Boys, the epitome of everything a new School London B-Boy represented. They rhymed in their OWN accent, dressed in their OWN way, plus coming from a Dancehall tradition, their flows were flavoured with sound system vibes. Coming up on North London based Saxon Sound; they successfully fused the reggae toast style with Hip hop MCing, a style that many US MC's made Millions biting!
Recognition Demon Boys 1st Album
Their first album Recognition released on Music Of Life, with its mash up of b-boy chops and Bashment riddims, stood up tall next the US classics of the time. Personally I feel it was as important as Ultramagnetic MC's first album Critical Beatdown, and like that crew, its now recognised that The Demon Boyz were ahead of their time also.
Original Guidance - Demon Boy's 2nd Album
Demon Boys 12" of the Rebel MC's Tribal Bass Record Label
Many people feel that this Album helped blend the UK Hip-Hop and the Hardcore/Drum&Bass genres in a relevant and genuine way.
After wining some of the industries most respected awards, huge singles, two albums and several years of touring, when The Demon Boyz went their separate ways, Million focussed on his dream of becoming a solo artist. It was a long journey of personal development that allowed him to travel all over Europe, Jamaica and Canada and truly come into his own as a vocalist, developing a huge following for his distinctive lyrical style.
In 2004, Million struck it big on the circuit once again with the massive club anthem "Dogz and Sledgez"; a tune that rammed dance floors across the globe, with an infectious energy that must be heard to be believed. Dogz and Sledgez was play listed on Radio and Music TV around the world and led to Million being nominated for several awards in the UK.
Million Dan, Skinnyman, Inja, Kela - Photo by Acer One TCF
Since then Million's progress has been steady and strong. He has been extensively touring with well-known hip-hop and reggae artists and assembled his own independent record label "Million Dappa Records". Million Dappa is distributed by Boombox Distribution and has already spawned a major hit through "Pull Up", one of Million's heaviest releases to date. The charging club anthem peaked at number 3 on the Radio 1xtra Worldwide Hip-Hop Charts.
InfraRed, Million's first ever mixtape is mixed by Daddy Skitz, and takes the listener on a journey through Millions influences from reggae to hip-hop, and sees his rhymes pitted against some of the biggest names in Urban music worldwide.
When he's not on tour doing shows with Skitz and Rodney P, he's ciphering with MC D or shocking out with fellow Junglist pioneers The Ragga Twins. So tracking him down can be quite a mission. Having had the pleasure of knowing Million Dan for a few years, I managed to spar with the big man for you all at ukhh.com. (He's also a Kung Fu Black belt… don't chuck it!)
Easy Brother please tell the people some of the exciting recent developments in Dappa-world?
Yes Shucks! Good to see you maan! Developments?!!! Where do I start?! 2006 has been the biggest year in my career so far man, it's consisted of big single releases, big video releases, big touring, and the BIGGEST thing... the birth of my own independent record company - MILLION DAPPA RECORDS. We joined forces with one of the biggest urban music distribution companies in Europe 'BOOMBOX DISTRIBUTION' and from the word 'GO' it has been success after success!
I've been following the success, but for the readers that may not know. Please tell them exactly what's been happening?
Our first release was the Million Dan single entitled 'PULL UP'. Also on that single was my groundbreaking 'DOGZ N SLEDGEZ' tune, and a new joint called 'TEK MICROPHONE', and of course the 'Pull Up Remix' (the mix featured on the Pull Up video). The Single went straight into the Radio One World Hip hop Chart at number THREE!!! The song instantly got play listed right across the Radio One network. Other radio station also championed the song, along with the biggest club DJs bangin' the tune hard on the dance floors. The Pull Up Video also had the same success, with the video being playlisted on MTV Base and Channel U, which is now the most viewed Hip hop video channel in Europe. Channel U ran phone in competitions for the Song and Video, and all together the whole project was a complete success. We're now really looking forward to 07
So what's the story with the InfraRed Mixtape man? Give us the low down?
During the summer of 2006, Million Dappa Records and our distribution company thought it would be perfect to drop a hot mixtape at the beginning of 2007. While having big success with the single, we then thought, "yo! Now would be a good time to debut my first ever mixtape to the masses." So that's exactly what we did! I jumped into the studio with my good bredrin DJ 'Daddy' Skitz - who I was touring with at the time. We went straight to work man. We took some of the biggest tunes, and assembled the biggest Hip hop/Bashment artists in the known Universe, then I said " Yeah, let me go in wid dem!!!" Even before the project was finished, word went around the industry like FIRRRE! I had niggaz callin' me at all time of the day and night asking me for early exclusive previews to dat shit!!! I was like yo man, you're gonna have to waaaait!!!
Siiick! On a more serious note though, just to get it correct people have to understand that The InfraRed Mixtape is more like a pre-album, rather than a conventional mixtape right?
Most definitely! It's a musical journey, which allows the listener to hear some heavy tunes, as well as get to know and understand Million Dan. It features some of the most talented MC's EVER to hold a microphone, and reflects Million Dan's musical influences, which range from Hip hop to reggae.
DJ Daddy Skitz
D2ed - Million D & MC D - UK Foundation Rocks! - Photo by Acer One TCF
I don't think people are ready!!! Can you give us an idea of some of your guests?
Infrared features some true heavyweights from around the world. To name but only a few, from the U.S. there are artists like Busta Rhymes, Nas and Mobb Deep. From Jamaica we've got Bounty Killer, Assassin and Sizzla. Last but not least, back to the UK's finest Demon Boyz, Rodney P and MC D. Of course to top it off, its mixed by the one and only DJ 'Daddy' Skitz from BBC Radio 1xtra. The InfraRed Mixtape is the beginning of a concept, of which the heavily anticipated 'Spektrum Ride' album will follow later in 2007.
Million D & MC D - Photo by Acer One TCF
You also recently had the big song and video "Devon Cream" with MC D, Rodney P and DJ First Aid. What's the deal with that?!
Yeahhh Shucks, that was the other BIG current news I knew you were gonna ask me about! Yo, I've played the leading role featuring on another smash tune hitting ALL the major, and pirate radio stations across the board. The song features me alongside two of the UK's finest RODNEY P and MC D. Produced by a bredrin of ours - DJ First Aid; this song is hurting everything in its wake! I had a strong feeling the Devon Cream song was going to do well. So prior to the release I asked the biggest Hip hop producer in the U.K right now BABY J and Baby Knotted Films his video production company to make the video. Baby J agreed and Baby Knotted Films then went on to creating one of the BEST urban videos of 2006. MTV BASE and CHANNEL U have also play listed the video.
It seems like you are not slacking off at all man! Put the listeners out of their misery, when is the album coming out and what can we expect?
Hahahah! The Spektrum album is simply gonna be an absolute show stoppin' killerrrrrrrrrr!!! The songs I have recorded for Spektrum so far, and the artists featuring on the album are gonna have people saying; "yeah, it's about time we've had a REAL album hit the streets." I'm still putting the finishing touches on the album, and believe me… It's gonna be a Juggernaut when it drops.
Million Dan on the Set - Photo by Acer One TCF
That I do not doubt! As a well travelled artist, could you briefly give us your thoughts on the state of reggae and hip-hop culture at the moment?
I love the growth and the development of Reggae music, and I am so happy that Reggae music has now become a new form of Pop music. Remembering that Pop music is simply short for Pop-ular music. When you look across the worlds music scene, alongside some of the biggest artists on the planet like Beyoncé, Eminem, 50 CENT, and even U2, Red Hot Chilly Peppers etc; you have names equally as big, like Sean Paul and Damien Marley. Hip hop Reggae the two genres that I was born and raised on, is the music that everybody NOW wants to be a part of. So yeah man… I love it.
Million & Family - Photo by Acer One TCF
Can you give us an impression of who are some of the artists out there you are feeling at the moment?
Yeah definitely, let me break that one down into countries...top three from each...
Top 3 artists I'm feeling from the U.S right now are Busta Rhymes, Mobb Deep and Talib Kweli
From Jamaica they are Bounty Killer, Sizzla and Assassin
From Canada JB (and the GCP Crew), Kardinal Offishall and Mc Nai
From U.K they are Taskforce, MC D and Rodney P
And from France they are Sain Super Crew, Sunka andMissill
There are more artists I could mention, but I'll leave it at that!
Where do you see your career going?
Upwards, skywards, elevation in its true form. Our moves in 2007 will simply speak for themselves. I want all my fans and supporters out there in the UK to keep there eyes firmly placed on this movement, ca biiiiig tingz a gwarn!!!
Lastly, I want to dedicate ALL of my successes to the loving memory of my mother and father - Phena Deleta Dunn and Hubert Dunn.
And to ALL myspace users, come and link us on myspace and our other various websites
The Infrared mixtape is released with the Spektrum Ride album out now. The Demon Boyz 'Vibes' re-release is out now on Suspect Packages with 'Recognition' being re-release on CD.
Interview by Shucks One
Related Links:Million Dan
Million Dan on myspace
Demon Boyz on myspace
Million Dan on Youtube