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The Story Behind The Song: Justin Martin – Buggin

Justin Martin

BREAKING NEWS: Justin Martin has announced he loves tacos almost as much as he does pizza.

Follow the dirtybird superstar on Twitter for all of three seconds and you’ll understand how seismic this revelation is.

“Crazy, right?” he laughs. “It’s quite a recent thing. We have some really nice food in the bay area and I find myself craving them more and more. It will never beat pizza though; pizza for me is a way of life. The whole social culture around them is awesome. But tacos are pretty amazing.”

And so is Buggin, Justin’s latest percussion-heavy butt-shaker.

Just like pizza and tacos, it’s seriously tasty. So is the story behind it. Literally: it’s on dirtybird’s BBQ album! We’ll let Justin explain…

“The story behind it is this… I wrote it a while ago because Phife Dawg from Tribe Called Quest was a guest at our dirtybird BBQ in Miami two years ago. I was playing right before he was on and I wanted to put together a special tribute. Tribe Called Quest had such a big influence on my musical tastes as a child. I put it together, played it at the BBQ and it went off!

“We knew we had to release it but it took us forever to get clearance on the sample. It turns out Tribe Called Quest had sampled it themselves so we couldn’t get clearance off them, we had to dig deep to the original source – Jack DeJohnette’s Directions – Minya’s The Mooch…

“So it was locked away in the vaults since then and we finally got clearance just as we were putting the BBQ album together. How cool is that? I’m pumped because Buggin was written especially for a BBQ. It’s the perfect intro song for the album which I think this actually is the best dirtybird album yet. I’m stoked to be part of such a great body of work once again.”

In case you didn’t know, the dirtybird BBQ is where it all started for the San Francisco label 10 years ago. Taking over a meadow in the city’s Golden Gate park, their annual summer get together began with a humble crowd of 30. Within a matter of years, it escalated to thousands. Everything about the label – from their family-like spirit and carefree attitude to their raw, physical bass grooves – can be traced back to these chargrilled shindigs.

“We’re returning to our roots this year and doing a BBQ tour,” explains Justin. “So far we’ve got six different city shows in the work. The BBQs are where it all started for us; everyone getting together and just having a good time with no bullshit. For our Miami BBQs we’ve always tried to go back to our hip-hop roots and invited some of heroes to play. It was Phife Dawg two years ago, last year was De La Soul. This year we have Just Blaze!”

With a wishlist that includes Public Enemy and Slick Rick, it’s clear the dirtybird BBQ presence at Miami won’t budge any time soon.