In the age of Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, Willow Smith and the cast of “Glee,” teen group sensations have slid off the radar after the boy band and girl group hurricane of the late ’90s and early 2000s. Mindless Behavior are here to change that.
Filling the hot slot of Janet Jackson’s opening act, Mindless Behavior are currently traveling the country for her Number Ones Tour. MTV News caught up with Roc Royal, Ray Ray, Princeton and Prodigy in their dressing room at the legendary Radio City Music Hall in New York City to find out what it means to be “mindless,” what it’s like opening for Janet and what we can expect from the 13-year-olds as they strive to headline their own tour someday soon.
“Two years ago, we all auditioned for the group,” Princeton explained from behind his large designer sunglasses. “Our managers took us to Interscope, and they signed us to Streamline Records. And then, after that, we started working on our album, #1 Girl.” Mindless Behavior’s yet-to-be-released debut album will include featured artists Ciara, Lil Twist and Tyga.
Regarding the band’s name, Princeton explained, “Mindless Behavior is our movement that we want everybody to join.”
“Being mindless is having confidence and being yourself,” Ray Ray added.
The boys intend for their album to find mass appeal. “Our music is very R&B and pop,” Princeton described. “When you listen to our first album … there are a lot of songs that adults and kids can relate to.”
As far as subject matter, Ray Ray noted, “All of our songs talk about girls. We love the ladies.”
With inspirations including Diddy, Eminem, Michael Jackson, Kanye West and Usher, the boys of Mindless Behavior bring wild synchronized dance moves, some high notes and some serious rapping to the stage.
“When our manager told us that we were going to be on tour with Janet Jackson, we couldn’t believe it!” Ray Ray gushed. “The first time I met Janet, I was stuck. I couldn’t move.”
Princeton recounted, “I kept telling them, ’Is it just me, or is the room warm?’ I think it was just me because I was so nervous.”
“When we walked in her room, it felt like we were in heaven,” Roc Royal remembered.
Prodigy was tickled by the experience: “She’s really relaxed and quiet, and she looks gorgeous.”
Janet even offered the young hip-hop artists a bit of advice: “She said to keep doing what we do and we’re very talented,” Princeton said, beaming. “Coming from Janet, that was big.”
The boys said they have felt very welcome on Janet’s stage thus far on the tour. “Janet fans are amazing!” Roc Royal said.
“There’s not one person in the crowd that’s sitting down or looking away or texting or doing something else,” Princeton added. “They’re always looking at us.”
The fact that Janet was the headliner didn’t stop dozens of Mindless fans from waiting outside of Radio City on the three nights of performances, screaming toward all windows in sight with the hope that the boys were in one of them.
“Every time we’re in New York, they’re outside waiting,” Princeton said, gesturing toward the nearby open window through which screams repeatedly traveled.
“They inspire us to do better onstage,” Roc Royal noted.
“And they like to give us gifts!” Ray Ray said, referring to the mountains of merchandise from the M&M Store piled around the dressing room.
The boys of Mindless Behavior hope to treat their fans with a full headlining tour of their own sometime soon. “When we headline our first tour, it’s going to be something that people have not seen before,” Princeton promised.
“It’s going to be something that the fans love,” added Prodigy.
Roc Royal exclaimed: “Everything’s going to be mindless!”
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