While looking for a place to film the video for his new track, rapper and Riverhead High School alum Dashah Prince knew there was only one place that embodied everything he loved about his hometown — and that place is Spicy’s BBQ.
The West Main Street eatery, where Mr. Prince, now 31 and living in Brooklyn, and his friends would grab a bite to eat during his high school days, will be featured in the upcoming video for “Move the Crowd.”
“It’s one of the best places to eat in Riverhead,” Mr. Prince said Saturday, the morning of the shoot. “It’s just a landmark.”
Old school rap fans will recognize the track title as a Rakim song, a Long Island born rapper Mr. Prince and the other half of his rap duo Fresh Vetz, Michael “DJ Pause” Cariello, are quick to admit is a major influence. The Fresh Vetz version is not a cover, though it does use the same title for its hook.
They said they were also inspired by Wu-Tang Clan, De La Soul and LL Cool J. Mr. Prince stresses their style is not gangsta or commercial rap, “just dope hip-hop.”
Mr. Prince and Mr. Cariello, a 2000 Riverhead High School alum from Flanders, have been rapping together since they were teenagers, though this is their fourth professional project together.
“We’ve been doing it since we were in my parents basement with two turntables, a microphone and a tape deck,” Mr. Cariello, 29, said.
Today, the pair estimate they have sold thousands of albums and countless free downloads. Their tracks have gotten play on the New York City-based radio station Hot 97 and they say their live shows, including a recent performance at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, are packed.[nggallery id=198 template=galleryview]
“Once people see us live, they really get it,” said Mr. Prince, whose given first name is Demetrius.
Though Mr. Prince has appeared in a half dozen other music videos, “Move the Crowd” will be the first time he appears in Riverhead on screen.
“I was listening to a track and what these guys were talking about was Long Island,” the video’s director, Alex Escobar of Creative Control TV, said of choosing the Riverhead location.
Though Mr. Prince has paid his bills working as a waiter, he hopes to soon be able to fully support himself with his music career.
“We’re getting to the point where we can make a living,” he said.
Fresh Vetz’s new album “Fresh to Def!!” will debut on iTunes next month.