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‘Teach Me How to Dougie’ rappers living the dream

courtesy Big Hassle Media

Everyone from reality star Kim Kardashian to NBA player John Wall has danced it.

But where exactly did Cali Swag District, the four-man rap group from Inglewood, Calif., find inspiration for their hit song “Teach Me How to Dougie”?

“The idea came from one of our friends we went to high school with and he graduated and went to school in Texas,” rapper/DJ C-Smoove said in an interview with The Miami Hurricane. “He said we should do a song about the Dougie and we took the idea and ran with it. We made it happen.”

Naturally, the next question on many people’s minds is what exactly is a “Dougie”?

According to C-Smoove, “Dougie” comes from Doug E. Fresh, who was also known as the “Human Beat Box.”

“It’s the hand movement when he used to put his hand over his head to wipe his head,” C-Smoove said. “That’s where Dougie came from and people just turned it into a dance.”

The dance originated in Dallas (WHEN?) where it would go on to be called the D-Town Boogie.

The first time C-Smoove, Yung, Jay-Are and M-Bone heard their song on the radio, they were in the studio.

“We got on the phone calling people, jumping up and down and recording everything,” C-Smoove said.

They never expected it to become so huge; their music video has currently received more than 26 million views on YouTube. It has even sparked popular parodies.

“We just were making a song. We had made songs individually before,” C-Smoove said. “This song, we were like, ‘Let’s see what happens’ basically.”

Checkmate Music Group co-owners Big Wy and Dairold Potts, along with Checkmate executive Poly Rob, brought the four together.

The name CSD came from a “visionary” named Tony Dillard because “We like to get fly our own way,” C-Smoove said.

In a few weeks, Cali Swag District will be announcing a tour to promote songs off their album, “The Kickback,” which comes out Feb. 15.

“It’s for ladies, of course, because we’re a group of dudes. It’s a lot of music you can move to, some of it you can groove to,” C-Smoove said. “We’ve got slow songs for the females and we’ve got our party music and club bangers and we have a couple of fist pump and rock ‘n’ roll stuff. It’s real diverse. I can’t wait for it to come out.”

Since “Teach Me How to Dougie” went platinum, CSD has had the chance to meet Kardashian and Wall. The rapper 50 Cent, someone C-Smoove would like to work with in the future, struck him as being a humble guy.

“It’s crazy. It’s like you don’t really think about how much you’re these people’s peers now. We went from watching these people, and admiring them, to actually being one of them,” C-Smoove said. “It’s a good feeling at the end of the day.”

As CSD make TV appearances on George Lopez’s show in Los Angeles and prepare for a cross-country tour, the busy lifestyle seems like a dream.

“Our lives right now, it’s like a movie. Everything is just fun,” C-Smoove said. “We’re living out our dreams and it’s real crazy when people come up to us all over the place and want to take pictures with us when we’re eating and all that. It’s what we love to do, so we do it.”

Christina De Nicola may be contacted at cdenicola@themiamihurricane.com.

February 2, 2011

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Christina De Nicola

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