While chillin’ in his hometown, DJ Tsunami Papi explained to the Top View TV audience what his stage name means. “ A Tsunami Papi is the biggest wave in the ocean,” he began. “Then, I added Papi Daddy as the last part. Yeah, we are in Houston. What, ya’ll don’t feel the heat!? (laughs)”
Many around the region respect Tsunami Papi as a DJ and an artist, and he has always believed in giving a show that has value. He frowns on artists who just lazily put in work, and feels that the energy that the crowd will have is dependent on the person who is playing the music or performing. He likes to be sure that the energy he gives off is infectious, and that the audience can actually feel how passionate he himself is about his musical craft.
Tsunami Papi Reminisces on Earlier Times
Those who are familiar with DJ Tsunami’s style know that his overall attitude is always upbeat and live. But what they don’t know from first look are the type of situations that he has gone through in order to get to his current, happier place in life. “I actually started doing the music when I was hustling,” he began. “I just went to a lil’ small studio on the North Side of the town on Antione Dr. & De Soto St. It’s crazy how I remember his name, but a man named Chuck had a studio, and we’d just go in there and record. We were just taking our CD up and down the block in the hood.”
For those who don’t know, the area of Houston DJ Tsunami Papi is referring to, Antoine & De Soto, is one of the rougher parts of the town. In fact, back in the days that he was talking about, The Houston Chronicle actually described that neighborhood as a “war zone” due to all the gunshots and gang activity.
Tsunami Papi actually wasn’t a rapper at first. “I really started singing, to tell you the truth,” he said. Yup, I sang first. And then, after a while, I started rapping, a lot of battle rapping. I just like music, period. Know what I’m saying? So it really wasn’t like I was doing just one thing, I was always rapping or putting some kind of melody on something. Anything with entertainment or music I’m on top of. God blessed me to be talented. I play piano by ear, I play drums, I played saxophone in school. I was always just musically inclined.”
He also reminisced about how he began DJing, and said he actually got started at a local soul food spot. “Shout out to Mr. Lee!” he said. “He’s an Ethiopian guy. That’s actually where I started to learn to DJ with American Habesha, which is a brand of Ethiopian music. That’s why my catalog is long, and I can mix a lot of what many Dj’s can’t really mix with.”
DJ Tsunami Papi lit up his blunt again and continued to reminisce on old times. “I was actually sleeping in the back of the restaurant at the time. During the day, I would clean the restaurant, and he would give me oxtail plates and blahzay-blahzay. That’s why probably to this day I still love oxtails so much (laughs). Later on at night, I would DJ. A huge crowd would come in, and we’d be in there til’ like six or seven in the morning, just going crazy drinking and having a good time. After the party, I would clean up as usual, and go to the back and sleep. I told that story because it wasn’t always like this, like how it is now, ya dig. I’m glad I went through that though. It was a humbling experience. Not a lot of people knew that, I didn’t wear it on my shoulder either, ya know. The Man Upstairs always kept my mentality and my personality strong.”
Recent Work From DJ Tsunami Papi
Tsunami Papi encourages anyone out there going through the struggle to keep going, no matter what anyone tells them or what kind of difficult position they are currently in. These days, things are much better, and he’s just having fun with continually developing good music.
He’s done work with Young Ro, for example, a Meek Mill Dreamchasers artist who was arrested in early 2020 after being beaten by police who wanted to send a message to Meek Mill about his Justice System Reform Campaign. “Free Young Ro! Free Young Yo!” Tsunami Papi chanted while pointing at the camera during his Top View TV interview. “He just got his state cases dropped. So, God is gonna have the last word.”
Tsunami Papi is planning to drop the song “Get Freaky” in September of 2020. It’ll be on all platforms. “I’ll put it like this,” he said. “If you play this song in the car, you might not make it to where you’re going. You might have to pull over for some back set sex! (laughs).”
You can easily find Tsunami Papi on Instagram along with his thousands of loyal followers.