The underground dance community is massive. They have their own stars, their own rules, and their own community. What's interesting is their lack of merging with the entertainment industry as a whole. Despite a handful of famous names, like those that were a part of MTV's America's Best Dance Crew and those who have gone viral, their stars are kept pretty much within their community. Business sense would dictate that these guys could be massive stars on a whole other level, and it's never quite made sense to those in the dance world that the rest of society has never caught on.
Brian Puspos is one of dance's biggest stars. A leader on the forefront of progressing dance styles, he's now looking to change the game in a whole new way- through making music himself. His singing is immaculate, his dancing clean, his style fresh, and his soul is on display. He's already caught massive attention- working with the likes of 88 Rising, Anderson .Paak, Josh Pan, and more.
Admittedly, the music he makes is not the type our site is used to covering, but his unique background and undeniable talent had us wanting to learn more. We sat down with the extraordinary artist to talk dance, singing, and what's next for him.
Hey Brian! Thanks for chatting with us. You've been in the dance community for years. What finally prompted you to take the leap from dance to making music yourself?
Brian Puspos: I think my obsession with innovation mixed with chasing the ultimate delivery of a story. I've always translated chapters of my life into movement, and I think translating those chapters into song would be kind of next level for me.
What/who are your major influences in both dance and music?
BP: Oh man, that's a hard one because my taste in music does range all over the spectrum. As strange as this sounds, I would have to say the first thing I think of is NSYNC and Dru Hill, lol. Just those two choices actually make sense in terms of matching sonically with my EP. My dancing influences will forever be Will Smith in Fresh Prince and Martin Lawrence in Martin. If you really think about it - they were always dancing or moving in some rhythmic fashion in their mannerisms and reactions. I grew up on those shows so I definitely feel like I naturally inherited those traits.
As an Asian American myself with family members that are part of the dance culture, I've heard your name a lot over the years. The dance crew community that I'm particularly familiar with seems to be overabundant in Asian Americans, and you're now entering a music-making community that (at least on the surface level) is lacking in Asian Americans (although entertainment world has arguably gotten better in including minorities). How do you think as we move into 2017, both communities can work on being more inclusive towards minority groups?
BP: I think why Asian Americans have excelled extremely well in the dance community, is because it's undeniable. If the work is undeniable - then the race generally doesn't matter to the consumer. I think my generation really opened those doors and showed fellow Asian Americans we can be more than just nerds, doctors, and karate kids. That's what I hope to do in the music. I want my work to be undeniable. Not just "oh, he is good for an Asian guy," or "for a dancer making music he's good." Once we show the world we are here to be taken seriously and our work backs that up, I think they will change the game. As for me, I just want the people to really enjoy the music just as they would any other mainstream artist. The reward is them finding out I'm Asian. :)
One of the other things that has surprised me over the years is still the lack of mainstream attention that the underground dance community seems to still receive from the underground music community. Off the top of my head, your new music and Troyboi are two major points where dance and music have intersected one another in the last couple of years. Where do you see the future of the dance community headed, and why do you think it's taken so long for these two communities to meet head to head?
BP: I definitely think it's taken this long for the two worlds to collide instead of being parallel from each other, because the dance community never really pushed beyond being a back up dancer. I think dancers succeeded very well in its own world, but I think my generation of creatives really saw much more. Now that we live in this dance revolution or now that dance has reached more to the general public with viral dance videos and dance movies - I think it will only spawn more opportunities and bridge more gaps. I definitely will be on the front lines doing everything I can to show the young creatives in any of the arts that there are no limits.
Finally, you've been pumping out music and visuals and it's only January. What can we expect in the coming 12 months?
BP: I'm definitely going to keep the momentum up and work hard and smart to make my stamp this year in the music industry. Just like my journey in dance - I busted my ass off to get to where the world has placed me. I will do no different in this chapter.