Watch DJ Premier’s Tiny Desk Performance and Genius Interview

DJ Premier

DJ Premier
DJ Premier performs on NPR’s Tiny Desk series. (Photo source: NPR)

After close to 30 years in the game, the legendary DJ Premier is still going strong. This year alone, he started a new record label, dropped his Miguel-assisted single “2 Lovin U,” and completed a 16-city tour.

Despite his many projects, Premo recently took the time to perform on NPR and speak with Genius. Both his set and interview are available to watch below.

On Monday, the Houston-native became the first DJ ever to perform on NPR’s Tiny Desk series. Accompanied by his touring band, The Badder Band, Premo delivered a nine-song medley of some of his classic productions. He and the five-piece ensemble gave the tracks new energy.

Premo also sat down with Genius for their conversation series, Genius Level. The insightful hour-long interview covered most of his illustrious career. The former Gang Starr member reflected on his early days with the group and working with Nas, JAY-Z, and The Notorious B.I.G. He also discussed his new label, TTT (To The Top), as well as his production process.

Watch his Tiny Desk performance:


KRS-One — KRS-One Attacks
KRS-One – MC’s Act Like They Don’t Know
Das EFX — Real Hip-Hop
Nas — Nas Is Like
Jeru The Damaja — Da Bichez
Gang Starr — Step in the Arena
Gang Starr ft. M.O.P. — 1/2 & 1/2
Royce Da 5’9″ — Boom
Gang Starr — Moment of Truth

Watch his interview with Genius:

Topics covered:

– His favorite beat (1:20)
– Producing Nas’ “N.Y. State of Mind” (2:30)
– His beginnings (5:30)
– How he started with Gang Starr (8:50)
– Working with Guru (15:30)
– Rumors of a posthumous Gang Starr album (18:50)
– What it’s like being an in-demand producer (21:00)
– Working with Biggie (22:40)
– Working with JAY-Z (26:45)
– Rumors of working with Kendrick Lamar (29:18)
– Working with D’Angelo (31:30)
– Working with Christina Aguilera (35:00)
– His current production process (37:20)
– His current projects and plans for the future (50:00)

Related: Watch DJ Premier and Miguel’s ‘2 Lovin U’ Video