David Dallas: New York state of mind

By David Dallas

David Dallas takes in the sights and sounds of New York while shooting his new video, Start Lookin Round. Photo / Leilani Momoisea
David Dallas takes in the sights and sounds of New York while shooting his new video, Start Lookin Round. Photo / Leilani Momoisea

Flying between New York City and Auckland, inking a deal with Duck Down Records, having Just Blaze spin records at the launch party for the just-released The Rose Tint Deluxe ... Papatoetoe son David Dallas has had one of his biggest years yet.

Dallas checked in from Harlem with some of the highlights of his NYC tour diary.

THURSDAY 8 SEPTEMBER
I'm a massive tennis fan so one of the highlights was getting to see the GOAT, Roger Federer, kick Jo-Wilfried Tsonga's ass at Arthur Ashe Stadium. It was choice too 'cause I got to walk around Flushing Meadows and see the Globe, not just famous for being in many a rap video, but also a famous skate spot.

THURSDAY 29 SEPTEMBER
The night before the Start Lookin Round video shoot we rolled to the launch of the NBA 2K12 game. Saw Jadakiss and Busta Rhymes perform and caught up with Freddie Gibbs who's always a cool dude. It was meant to be a chill night, but with the free drinks flowing, of course the Kiwis are the last to leave.

Got home four hours before we had to get up for the shoot.

FRIDAY 30 SEPTEMBER
This was a crazy long day. From six in the morning til' 10 at night we shot for the 'Start Lookin Round' vid, from Harlem to Liberty Island to Coney Island. You're not allowed to film on Liberty Island without a permit so we had to shoot that part of the vid guerilla styles. To even get on the island you have to go through airport-type security, and they almost didn't let us on with all our cameras. But our directors are pretty slick and told security that the missus and I were newlyweds and we'd hired them to take pictures of us on our honeymoon. Was pretty crack up trying to rap in front of the Statue of Liberty undercover styles.

MONDAY 2 OCTOBER
I grew up watching Buckshot videos - I first saw a Buckshot video when I was 12 years old, so to shoot a video with him in Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy in Brooklyn was crazy. It's one of those things that, when you start to think about it, it becomes quite surreal. I was a kid in New Zealand taping Black Moon videos off Max TV - I try not to think about that sort of shit too much, otherwise you start to vibe yourself out. But yep, shot a video with Buckshot today - ended the day with a feed at Amy Ruth's soul food spot. I was the healthy guy eating the catfish - everyone else got fried chicken on waffles.

TUESDAY 4 OCTOBER
This was one of those "only in New York" type nights. Started the night chilling with the owner and barbers from Frank's Chop Shop, then for some reason unbeknown to me a stretch limo pulls up on the side of the road to take us to a club. We get inside and there's Rick Ross and DJ Khaled just standing 'round in the middle of the dance floor. We end the night at this ridiculously hipster bar in the Lower East Side where I see Chad Muska leave the club, unchain his bike outside and cycle off into the night.

SATURDAY 8 OCTOBER
Whenever I'm in New York, I get Tyson Kennedy from Stereogram to cut my hair. He told me that he was MCing for Mt Eden Dubstep and invited the crew and me along to their show at Best Buy Theater in Times Square. I thought we were just going to watch the show, but halfway through they start calling me onstage to do a verse. I've never been to a dubstep gig before, except for festival sets, so I was kinda dropping my nuts. Was all good though - dropped the 'Not Many' verse in front of a New York crowd wearing my vintage All Blacks jersey. Then watched the All Blacks beat Argentina that same night - good times.

WEDNESDAY 12 OCTOBER
Got the New Zealand crew together for some Vietnamese in Chinatown at our favourite spot, Pho Grand. In a spur of the moment decision we headed to a dive karaoke bar, where me and Isaac Hindin Miller of Isaac Likes fame do a mean Boyz II Men rendition of End of the Road. Had to cut that shit short though 'cause I told everyone back home to tune into my Ustream. We grabbed some beers, chilled the Maggi Onion and Nestle reduced cream dip that my mates Che and Shirl brought over for us, and played everyone the bonus tracks off The Rose Tint Deluxe album for the first time. People seem to be feeling it.

SATURDAY 15 OCTOBER
Relaxing in the Air New Zealand Koru Lounge in LAX on my way home - makes me feel like I'm doing something right with my life.

* David Dallas' The Rose Tint Deluxe is out now on Dirty/Dawnraid/Frequency.

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