DaCav5’s b_Roc: from Birth to Beats

Brian Jenkins (aka "b_Roc") from DaCav5

I am a DaCav5 fan.  I’m almost embarrassed to say that, as a “young” lady in her thirty somethings, but their story is near and dear to my heart now.  I’m surprised that they haven’t been picked up by a record label, so here’s my personal pitch.

Sony BMG, Universal, Roc-A-Fella, Atlantic, etc…you need to scoop up DACAV5 right now!

Now onto my regularly scheduled program  😎

After talking to Mikey P, it was clear to me that b_Roc had a lot to do with getting the group together and was the brains behind the sound for DaCav5’s music.  Naturally, I wanted to spend some time with b_Roc, too, and thankfully, he was open to it.

The word I was fishing for in the interview to describe b_Roc was modest.  I wasn’t expecting that (based on his and all of DaCav5’s myspace and other online personas), but when you strip away all of that, I see b_Roc as someone with ambition, a few insecurities, even some regrets (like not going to college), and not totally caught up in the online success they’ve gained so far.  Take it from me, B (can I call you that? …lol), you have come a long way already and the big leap is just around the corner.  Stay the course, stay humble (that means don’t get hood rich on us…lol), and count your blessings.

First off, I noticed b_Roc hasn’t had a ton of press about him out there nor a bio, so I wanted to get just some basic info.  Ladies, this part’s for you…

How did you get into music?

When I was a little kid, I used to drive around in my grandpop’s van all the time, and he used to always have the oldies on, and there was like just this one song…I don’t know what the name of the song was, but it was one song that caught my attention, and then when I went home that night I just started writin’ raps like…I used to put two boom boxes together and I would record off of one and play the music off the other and then I would put them both together and I would rap in between it…

…and nobody knows this until now hee hee!  😛 but I used to pretend I had a rap group and I used to rap in like three different voices.  So I always wanted to be a part of a group and finally it happened…

b_Roc was into making music as a hobby for years, and I wanted to know how things progressed from there to success he and DaCav5 have now.

At the time it was just a hobby…myspace came along we uploaded all our songs to it, and I guess like…we took myspace by storm, and we just started getting a lot of attention, a lot of feedback.  I guess that’s when I really started taking it serious, you know?…We started making songs like “Tetris” (huge online hit for DaCav5)

Walk me through the history/evolution of DaCav5.  I know there was a group before that parted ways and then somehow back together.

Me and this kid named o8o (you can find o8o at myspace.com/thunderkatz), we started the group back in senior year of high school, that was 2000, and we came across Benofficial, so it was us three.  Then Benofficial and o8o both went to college. So when they went to college, I started working on my solo material and then o8o started working on his solo material.  At the time, o8o signed an [record deal] with Wall Street Entertainment, and then I met Mikey P a couple of months after that at an amusement park.

That’s funny.  What amusement park?

It was at The Falls in Mt. Laurel.

continuing with the story…

So we met there and, you know, we started making songs together, and then Ben and o8o both came back from college so we said ‘hey, why don’t we just start the group back up?’ and then as soon as the group started, o8o said he’s under contract and he can’t really take DaCav5 serious…he got signed to Murder, Inc.  So we had to let him go.  He didn’t want to go, you know, but we didn’t want to play tug-o-war…

…so then it was me, Ben, Mikey P, and then we decided to get some younger blood in the group and added Mike-EEE, and that’s DaCav5.

Was it always called DaCav5?

DaCav5 is short for Da Cavalry…people kept messin’ up the name and calling us like The Calvary, like a church calvary…so we decided to just shorten it up and call it DaCav5, but people keep butchering that so we’re like gonna just make it “Da” (laughs).

continuing…

You mentioned that the direction and the sound is different in the new DaCav5 as opposed to your original group.  Tell me what that means.

I think that before we wanted to…test the waters and just kind of do stuff that we wanted to do, but now like you know that we’ve got a lot of feedback from the core fans, like the people who have been around us for a while, we have an idea of what we want to do.

We’re from the suburbs, so we know we can’t just go out there and be a hip hop group because we’ll never be accepted by the people from the street or anybody from the hood.  So, we decided we look like a pop group.  We can rap.  So let’s just do some hip pop stuff, you know?  Uptempo club, radio friendly stuff, and just tone down our image a little bit because we know we’re going to have a lot of younger fans so we can’t be on a song with racy lyrics.

…My mom…wants to hear my music, and I’m like ‘uhh, when I get you a radio edit’…so I want to be able to make my music for my moms and make her proud, you know?

So, are you a mama’s boy?

When I was little, I wasn’t, but now I am because…when I was livin’ with her, we were always at each other’s neck…but [now] I love my mom.

Naturally, after hearing b_Roc speak of his mom, I asked about his dad.  That question came with a story that I wanted to be sensitive to, but he is allowing me to share with you readers and fans.  How many of us have daddy issues to varying degrees?  Thank you, b_Roc, for letting us take a peek into you the real person behind the beats.

My dad actually left when I was four.  He just came back into my life recently, so we’re pretty much just trying to piece things together…he was an…alcoholic.  The way I saw it when I was younger was that he chose like to be an alcoholic rather than to be there for his kids, like I never got a phone call for my birthday…a call to say Merry Christmas…so all that stuff is still embedded in my head…It’s just gonna take a couple of years to get over that…

I forgive and forget, life’s too short...

Those are some big words that all of us need to be reminded of from time to time.

As if my last question didn’t bring about some unanticipated insight, b_Roc’s response to my next question was a shocker, too.

Staying along the family tip, do you have fans in the family?

To be honest, dude (I’ll have to forgive and forget that he called me ‘dude’…lol), my family like, they never ask about my music ever.  Never ever, ever.  Because I’m the type of guy like when I do music, I do music, but when I go to my social life, like when I go to kick it with my family I don’t ever tell them that I do music.  I guess I’m just like weird like that…

After some more probing, his response essentially boiled down to feeling that he had not lived up to his family’s expectations like going to college which he regrets (perhaps the fact that o8o and Ben also went to college played a role in his feelings, too).  So, he wants to involve them with his music once he’s made it super big time.  You know?  That point where he feels he’s compensated for his perceived missteps.

Enough of my armchair psychology…Let’s talk about the personalities of all the DaCav5 members…

b_Roc? (you)

I’m a big goofball, but there are times when I get serious…when people get out of hand…I like to make sure that everybody’s focused and know what’s going on ahead of time, like these are everybody that I recruited…so I have to look out for them like a big brother just to make sure that they’re doin’ what they need to do without b.s.’n

Mikey P?

Mikey P is a goofball, just like me.  That’s why we’re good for each other.  Mikey P is the ‘pretty’ one.  Real pretty, real pretty, real pretty.  Mikey P loves attention from women…When we’re out in public, like he’ll get the most attention, but everybody in the group, they don’t have egos or anything so they’re all cool with that…I can’t get into the Mikey P stories…

Ladies, I could not squeeze a story out of him, so you’ll have to ask Mikey P himself what b_Roc’s talking about, but it definitely sounds juicy.  However, he did elaborate a little more for me…

…Out of everyone in the group, he’s the one that talks to the fans the most, and the one that takes the most pictures…

Do you think Mikey P being on From Gs to Gents made him even more of a hit with the ladies or was he that way before?

He was that way before…even before DaCav5…

Mike-EEE?

He’s the young one, but he’s like real shy when it comes to interviews.  He doesn’t talk.  He’s the type to get real choked up during interviews.  He’s a rockhead. He loves rock music.  He loves gettin’ in the mosh pit and hittin’ people and stuff.  Personality-wise, he loves women.  Loves women.  Loves, loves, loves, loves women.  He’s the type of guy that would come to your door with like a rose…and he irons his boxers.  He’s real pretty.  He’s more pretty than Mikey P, like when we’re on the road, he takes the longest to get ready…I think he’s more pretty than Mikey P to be honest with you.

Mike-EEE, you’re next!  You can thank your boy, b_Roc for that.  😉

Benofficial?

Ben is the cocky one.  He’ll tell you that himself…It’s just a part of his attitude like when people be talkin’ stuff about Ben like Ben’s too cocky…I just tell them, look, Ben is Ben.  There’s nothing else I can say good or bad, you know…He’s a comedian…and he’s a good talker, too…He graduated from Rowan University…he’s a really good speaker.  Like, whenever we have interviews, we just let him talk.  Every interview we’ve done like on radio, you’ll always hear him talk the most because he’s just so good with communicating with people…Also, he’s our stylist…he likes to make sure we look good when we go onstage.

I closed out with some basic ‘my favorite…’ questions.  Here’s how he responded…

Watch out Mikey P!  You might have met your sexy match after the girls catch peep this post.  😉

Thanks again, b_Roc, for giving me such a fantastic interview.  Thanks, Dove and Status Management for continuing to networking with me and your clients.

Muah!

~Ifelicious

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Comments

  1. SolidMastery says:

    I am currently heavily under the influence of:

    Music: The Streets’ four albums
    Book: Eric Jerome Dickey’s Pleasure
    Beverage: Coffee Tea

    After having been dragooned into checking out DaCav5, I have this to say…

    Congratulator Bread:
    It warms my heart to hear hiphop-based groups step out of the traditional sound and explore other things. Kudos to them Tetris is a good tune.

    Hater Meat:
    The lyrics did not grab me at first listen. I would like to say that I am an objective listener and that there is a method to my madness when selecting my music. But there is not….I like what I like. Stuff that underscores my previous experiences…

    Also, somebody tell this ifelicious to diversify her interviewee list to include some sultry women-based artists.

    Congratulator Bread:
    After listening to a few tunes, I could see me vibing out to DaCav5 placed along my Streets and Burial rotation (provided I am in the mood). Hopefully I will get a chance to hear what the evolution of the DaCav5 sounds like over time.

  2. Oooh I luv this group. It’s exciting to see you do the interview with the brotha who does the beats! He is crazy talented, I super luv his beats! Crazy talented. Yo’ ‘felicious I luv your interview style, I never seen nothin like it! So much character comes through like I am talkin to B Roc!

    B Roc you crazy hot sexy talented brotha! Much luv and holla at a sista!

  3. I see that this whack nut SolidMaster is applyin them toastmaster skills to yo’ interview. starting good, then doing critique, and wrappin up good. I like the meat SolidMastery! I’m under the influence of deez nutz.

  4. T to the Odd says:

    B to the ROC is pretty cool, but not as cool as T to the ODD. Peace bro!

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