Far East Movement
Far East Movement at the 2011 MuchMusic Video Awards. From left to right: J-Splif (formerly), Kev Nish, Prohgress, DJ Virman.
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, United States|
Far East Movement (abbreviated FM) is an American hip hop and electronic music group based in Los Angeles. The group formed in 2003 and as of August 2018 consists of Kev Nish (Kevin Nishimura), Prohgress (James Roh) and DJ Virman (Virman Coquia). Their single "Like a G6", featuring pop-rap duo The Cataracs and singer Dev hit number one on both the Billboard Hot 100 chart and on the iTunes chart in late October 2010, making them the first Asian-American group to earn a number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Among their other chart toppers are: "Rocketeer" featuring Ryan Tedder of One Republic (peaked at #7 on Billboard), "Turn Up the Love" (#2 on the UK Charts), and their 2012 remix to the song "Get Up (Rattle)" by the Bingo Players, also hit #1 on the UK Charts.
The group's latest album, Identity, is the first release under their own record label Transparent Music. Identity focuses on bridging Eastern artists with FM's Western dance music roots. The album received a positive review in Billboard Magazine; the single "Freal Luv" with Marshmello featuring Tinashe and Chanyeol from the chart topping K-pop group EXO, received 31 million plays on YouTube. Far East Movement has also branched out with a number of collaborations on labels Ministry of Sound, Dim Mak, and Ultra.
In 2016, Far East Movement's company, Transparent Arts (TA), moved into artist management. TA manages seven artists of various genres, including Korean pop superstar Tiffany, rappers Dumbfoundead and Year of the Ox, producers Yultron, Autolaser, Rell the Soundbender, and singer/ songwriter Satica. The artists have garnered millions of social media plays, sold out national tours, and have released tracks through labels OWSLA, Spinnin', Armada, and Universal. FM also has a joint label, BredNButter, with Trap City, a large YouTube dance music channel with more than ten million subscribers. BredNButter's many releases have amassed millions of plays in total in a little over a year of existence. They also founded Identity Festival, a festival celebrating Asian American Heritage with the City of Los Angeles on the steps of City Hall that gathered over 10,000 attendees in 2018 with headliners Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park and k-pop star Jay Park. Far East Movement is in the process of recording their next full-length release.
The three original members of Far East Movement, Kevin Nishimura (Kev Nish), James Roh (Prohgress), and Jae Choung (J-Splif), grew up in the Downtown Los Angeles area. They were close companions in high school and shared a passion for music together. The trio promoted their music online and began performing at local clubs and events in Los Angeles; soon, they began their musical career with the name "Emcees Anonymous" by 2001. However, they later changed it to Far East Movement or FM, originating from a song that they produced with the same name. In 2003, they organised an event called "Movementality" in Koreatown, Los Angeles, featuring ten different performances with all the proceeds sent to a local youth drug rehabilitation center.
In 2005, Far East Movement released a mixtape called Audio-Bio, which was one of their first CDs and contained many of their earliest songs and many songs not available anywhere else. Their first album, titled Folk Music, was released in early 2006. The single "Round Round" was featured in the film, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, appearing both on the self-titled soundtrack and video game. This critical breakout was the catalyst that cemented their decision to pursue music as a full-time career. Their songs "Get Offa Me" and "Make Ya Self" were featured in The Fast and the Furious video game. They proceeded to perform on two world tours (including USA, South America, Canada, and Asia), and they signed distribution deals in Japan and Korea with Avex Network and JF Productions for their album.
In 2007, they were featured in the Sundance Film Festival film called Finishing the Game, making the song "Satisfaction" for the film. They also released the single "You've Got A Friend" featuring Lil Rob and Baby Bash, which became their first song on major national radio.
LA's radio station Power 106 DJ, DJ Virman, came to the group as their official DJ. They released another single titled "Lowridin" that received heavy airplay in 2008. Soon after, they planned on showcasing a second album, releasing Animal later on in the same year. Animal featured three hit singles that frequently won national radio play: "You've Got A Friend", "Lowridin", and the successful "Girls On The Dance Floor". "Girls on the Dance Floor" reached 27 on the Billboard chart for the Latin Rhythm Airplay, which marked their debut on the Billboard's charts.
There were several collaborations on the Animal album, including The Stereotypes, Lil Rob, Baby Bash, Bruno Mars, Wiz Khalifa, Bionik, 24/8, IZ, DB Tonik, and Jah Free. Their songs from the Animal album were featured in major film and television on multiple occasions. FM's single "Girls on the Dance Floor" has been played on MTV's America's Best Dance Crew on the Season 4 Finale during a performance with Artistry In Motion, Vogue Evolution and We Are Heroes. It was also featured on Get Him to the Greek, FOX's So You Think You Can Dance and on the 7th episode of CSI: Miami Season 8. In addition, "Dance Like Michael Jackson" was aired on ABC Family's Lincoln Heights on November 10, 2009 and on the Gossip Girl episode, "Dan de Fleurette". "I Party" was highlighted on FOX's TV series Lie To Me and "Fetish" was on Spike TV's Guy's Choice Awards 2009. "Girls on the Dance Floor" has attained over 5 million hits on Myspace while attracting over 8 million views on YouTube.
Streetwear company Orisue teamed up with Far East Movement and helped shoot a music video for "Lowridin". In May 2009, Far East Movement joined the Korean hip hop group Epik High on their "Map the Soul" tour throughout the U.S. Then they held their first headlining concert at the Roxy Theater in Hollywood by July 2009, which resulted in a sold-out show. Together with Wong Fu Productions, FM has established another three sold-out "International Secret Agents" concerts titled as "ISA", hosted in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York in order to promote Asian American artists in the media with performances by Quest Crew, Poreotics, Jay Park, and others.
FM's mixtape Party Animal was released on the first date of LMFAO's Party Rock Tour. Their two singles, "Girls on the Dance Floor" and "2 is Better w/ Ya Boy", garnered successful radio airplay. They later announced that they were working on a new album with Grammy nominated producers, The Stereotypes, who had produced their hit track, "Girls on the Dance Floor".
In February 2010, Far East Movement signed a major record deal with Cherrytree Records, a subsidiary of Interscope Records. They were managed at the time by Ted Chung and Russell Redeaux of Stampede Management.
Later in the same year, the group supported Robyn and Kelis on their double headlining tour along with Dan Black, in addition to being announced as the opening act of Lady Gaga's tour on the Japanese leg of The Monster Ball Tour. Furthermore, their previous hit track, "Girls on the Dancefloor" & "Fetish", was featured in Piranha 3D, yet it was not slotted into the film's soundtrack.
Their 2010 "ISA" shows in New York and LA were held on August 28 and September 5 respectively. They performed their songs alongside acts by AJ Rafael, Jay Park, Wong Fu Productions, Poreotics and Quest Crew (both winners from America's Best Dance Crew), David Choi, Jennifer Chung, David Garibaldi, Lydia Paek, and more.
Free Wired, their debut album from Cherrytree/Interscope Records, was released on October 12, 2010. The album includes collaborations with Keri Hilson, Lil Jon, Snoop Dogg (their song co-written by Bruno Mars), Mohombi, Colette Carr, Natalia Kills, Koda Kumi, and Ryan Tedder from OneRepublic.
In the October 30, 2010 edition of Billboard Magazine, their single featuring The Cataracs and Dev titled "Like a G6" peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 as well as iTunes. While gathering success for both their album and single, they were featured in a series of tour dates with their Cherrytree/Interscope Record label mate, La Roux, in November 2010.
On November 20, it was confirmed that the group had reached the double Platinum status for "Like a G6", collecting two million in sales. Their second single which was released for airplay as a follow up to "Like A G6" was "Rocketeer", which featured Ryan Tedder.
The group toured with Rihanna and Calvin Harris from late February to early March, as part of Rihanna's Last Girl on Earth Tour.  Right after the tour ended, the group began headlining their own tour, The Free Wired World Tour. The group visited Manila, Jakarta, Taipei, Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Hamburg and Bangkok. The group were due to tour selected venues in the UK in early July but cancelled these dates due to recording commitments. However, they performed at the Barclaycard Wireless Festival on July 1 in London.
Their second major label album, Dirty Bass, was released on May 18, 2012. The lead single from the album was "Live My Life", featuring Justin Bieber. It was more successful than the original first single "Jello." The single was released on February 28, 2012, with the release of the music video on March 23, 2012. The video was shot on the streets of Amsterdam, and directed by Mickey Finnegan.
Far East Movement also worked with producers such as David Guetta, Cherry Cherry Boom Boom (aka Cherrytree founder/president Martin Kierszenbaum), will.i.am and RedOne. In September 2012, the group performed in Charlotte with Perez Hilton as part of the 2012 Democratic National Convention. On October 22, 2012, they released a new single, "For All" which they then performed at then President Barack Obama's re-election inauguration.
In 2012, "Get Up (Rattle)," a song by the Bingo Players on which they were featured, hit #1 on the UK Singles Chart. "Turn Up the Love," a track from "Dirty Bass," reached the top 5 on the overall singles charts in over a dozen countries.
On April 29, 2013, Far East Movement released the song "Lovetron," featuring Travis Garland. On June 2, 2013, they released the song "The Illest", featuring Riff Raff. On January 9, 2014, they released the song "Bang It To The Curb", featuring Sidney Samson. Their EP KTown Riot was released on October 28, 2014.
On September 21, 2016, S.M Entertainment, one of the largest entertainment companies in South Korea, announced that Chanyeol, from popular K-pop band EXO, would be collaborating with Far East Movement in their track "Freal Luv", also featuring Tinashe and Marshmello. On October 10, 2016, Starship Entertainment announced that Hyolyn, from K-pop girl-group Sistar, would be featuring in a new song titled "Umbrella".
Both songs were included in the band's fifth studio album, Identity, released on October 21. It features various Korean artists, such as Tiffany from Girls' Generation, rappers Yoon Mi-rae, Jay Park, Loco and R&B group Urban Zakapa, along with American singer-songwriter Macy Gray, rapper Soulja Boy and credits from British singer-producer MNEK. Identity debuted at #1 on the global iTunes dance charts and the music video for "Freal Luv" has garnered over 30 million views on YouTube at last count.
|2009||on YouTube||Themselves||Evan Jackson Leong|
|2010||on YouTube||Mobsters||Natalia Kills|
|on YouTube||Themselves||DPD, Casey Chan|
|2011||So Random!||Musical Guest (Themselves)|
|2012||America's Best Dance Crew||Musical Guest (Themselves)|
|Mac & Devin Go to High School||Detention Students||Jeff Hard|
|2015||Hell's Kitchen||Dining Room Guests (Themselves)||Sharon Trojan Hollinger|
DJ Virman joined the group in 2007. Before joining them he was working as a DJ for the Power 106 radio station in Los Angeles.
On 23 June 2016, Far East Movement announced that J-Splif had left the group due to family reasons.
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