The BC-One Interview
We recently met a lovely young man by the name of TJ, who is the driving force behind BC-One, a promotions company here in Pittsburgh. You might notice some of his events from time to time – he hosts a 3B series at Wingharts in the South Side once a week and throws EDM events from time to time. We were curious about where this cat came from, so what better way to find out than to ask him a few questions. Become acquainted with TJ!
Kymbo Slice: Where did you get the idea to start BC1 and were there any other key individuals involved at its formation? How about now? Is this a one man operation? If not, who else is involved?
TJ: The idea for Bc1art.com was my brainchild for the most part. I’ve been promoting myself and my shows for years, so why not help promote my friends who are trying to build themselves and their respective scenes as well. Once I started the collective it was just a matter of time before I knew I’d be throwing shows again. I had taken a few years off after my last band split up “due to artistic differences.” I enlisted the help of my good friends and partners (Ryan Witness, Alex Avakian, and Charlie Horowitz) to produce the event GET ROWDY June 1st at the Moose. Ryan has about 5 years of DJ experience and has played shows all over the country as a Bc1 representative, including Lucidity Fest in Santa Barbra, CA and Euphoria fest in Austin, TX. Alex is new to event promotion but has a ton of great ideas. He’s also half of the clothing company Daily Bread. Charlie is just a crazy good helper. He’s been a huge part of our street team as well as a big influence in creative. Another key member of the BC1 productions family is Will McLaughlin from Versed Design. Will and I have teamed up to create a new 3D video mapping project. We’ve been working together for about 6 months now on this project and plan to make the service available to promoters in the Pittsburgh area in the near future.
KS: You promote events in Pittsburgh and Cali. What’s the connection there? Do the types of events differ in each city?
TJ: The PA to CA connection… That happened about 6 years ago a small hip hop group, The International Nutz who compiled of a slew of former Pittsburgh residents. They needed a DJ and I was looking for a change of scenery. Before moving to CA I threw strictly EDM events. My events in CA quickly became live performance shows. I threw a weekly event at Jasper O’farrels in Sebastopol, CA for about 8 months to a year. These events were strictly bands and monthly themed based on genre.
KS: According to your website you used to be a DJ – do you still play out? Who are some of your favorite artists?
TJ: I am a DJ still. I currently play almost every Monday at 3B (burgers,beers, and bass) in the Southside at Wingharts between 15th and 16th. I started my DJ career around the end of 2000 in Pgh as TAO. I played strictly reggae/jungle/jump up. Between 2000 and 2006 I worked closely with Pursuit of Happiness. We threw the Topia series as well as Merry X-mas and Party in Your Pants. I also worked with VJ Jeff Brick doing visuals for events like Unity and tons of others. I held down a residency at PD’s pub for the event PUSH along side fellow resident RSK.
Favorite artist. That’s a hard one. I’m kind of all over the place musically. I love 90s hip hop probably more than most other genres ( Biggie, Wu Tang, Eazy E, Outkast, anything from the Rhymesayers crew). In the world of EDM it’s all glitch, juke, trap, jungle, and older dub heavy dubstep. Oh and electro swing like Caravan Palace. I love that swing step gypsy sound right now. Memorable shows…. Unity 2000, Bunny from Rabbit in the Moon almost ran me over with a golf cart. My favorite show I was involved with – there are 5 that come to mind right away.
The final show my last band played. I deejayed for a Sublime tribute band Johnny Butt and the Bad Fish. Our final show was at the Pheonix Theater in Petaluma, CA. The same venue Brad and the rest of the members of Sublime last played together. The crowd was amazing, probably the most surreal show. Having everyone singing along and showing thir love for the music that they had left us was just amazing. Other good ones were my first show in Puerto Rico, Euphoria fest in TX( I emceed for DurtySneakz), and my first show ever – Club 205/Liquified. I played the second stage headlining set 12-1 and killed it, IMO. I did well enough that I was booked to play almost once a week for the next 2 years.
KS: What’s next for BC1? Future events? Any plans on branching out or collaborating with other promoters in the near future?
TJ: The future has a lot happening. We’re currently putting together shows with LAB Therapy. The events are called the After Party, a low cost 18+ after party located at the Tilted Kilt on the North Shore right next to Stage AE and following almost every Stage AE concert.
I’m currently in talks with another local company and a company from Ohio to bring in more live music to our events. Nothing is set in stone yet but I’ve been having talks with artists in the hip hop, funk, and jam band scenes to incorporate more sounds and to break down the musical segregation we all have to suffer.
KS: What’s your favorite part about doing what you do?
TJ: I love the energy of the crowd the excitement and anticipation bouncing off of everyone as they wait for the doors to open and the bass line to drop for the first time. It’s magical to see the smiles on their melted faces when they get blown away by music they probably would have never heard if it weren’t for my event introducing them to it. I get the biggest sense of blissed out love anytime I get a message from someone telling me how one of the artists I booked changed the way they listen to music or opened their minds to a new genre or sound.
Get Rowdy happens June 1 at The Lawrenceville Moose. $10 presales. $15 at the door.