After 12 years as one of hip hop and R&B's most influential music platforms, BET's 106 & Park looked as if its celebrated run was coming to an end last month, complete with an official Twitter announcement. Producers quickly deleted the tweet and assured viewers the show would go on. Nevertheless, there was worry.
Last Monday, just days after a star-studded send off for former hosts Terrance J and Rosci Diaz, 106 fans breathed a sigh of relief as four new personalities took to the stage — Detroit performers Shorty da Prince and Paigon along with rapper-actor megastar Bow Wow . . . and Houston's own Miss Mykie.
On Saturday night, CultureMap sat down with Mykie at the House of Blues to hear more about her journey from emerging musician to soon-to-be national celebrity. She was in H-Town briefly over the weekend to celebrate her new gig with family and friends, including a big party at Grooves.
CultureMap: How did you make this quick leap into television?
Miss Mykie: Growing up in Houston, I did a lot of stage plays as well as some commercials here and there. After I finished college [at Howard University in 2007], I came home and started to pursue music seriously. I did a nationwide tour and put out regular videos online. My YouTube channel actually has more than a million hits, so the Internet definitely helped me gain attention.
"BET contacted my m anagement about co-hosting 106 & Park after the tour wrapped up. I was excited about the opportunity, but never thought it would turn into anything serious."
BET contacted my management about co-hosting 106 & Park after the tour wrapped up. I was excited about the opportunity, but never thought it would turn into anything serious. They called me back for a few more times and then I saw myself on the show's website in a section saying that they were looking for a new host. I was like 'Wow, what is going on? This is getting serious.' . . . And here we are now. It's crazy.
CM: Where are you with your music career at the moment?
MM: Right, now music's on pause. Getting a hosting gig is a whole new thing for me. I'm pretty used to being interviewed as an artist and performer. But this role to being an interviewer definitely takes some skills. I'm a natural entertainer, so I'm hoping it won't take me to long to learn.
I'm really trying to focus on being the best TV personality I can be at this time. Music is always going to be there and it's not certainly not the end for me, I'm just concentrating on what's at hand.
CM: How has your first week gone on the show?
MM: The vibes are great. There are two girls and two guys — Bow Wow being one of them — and we all have different personalities, which makes things interesting and keeps the energy high.
"I'm still keepi ng my place in Houston. This is home for me and I'll always want to have something here."
It's cool because all four of us have followings from different places. My boss Stephen G. Hill, who created 106 & Park years ago, told us that when the show's changed hosts in the past, there's always been a slight drop in viewership. This time, he has they've actually gained viewers.
CM: How was the move from Houston to New York?
MM: I'm living in a hotel in New York right now, but I hope to be moved in sometime in the next week and a half. I'm still keeping my place in Houston. This is home for me and I'll always want to have something here.
Catch 106 & Park Monday through Friday at 5 p.m. on BET.