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Mason performing at the Fillmore in San Francisco, July 2009
|Birth name||Vincent Lamont Mason Jr.|
|Also known as||Maseo|
March 24, 1970 |
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Occupation(s)||DJ, producer, rapper|
|Years active||1987 - present|
|Labels||Tommy Boy Records,A.O.I/ Sanctuary, A.O.I./Kobalt|
|Associated acts||De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest, Native Tongues, Radio Bums, Phife Dawg|
Kelvin Mercer ("Posdnuos", "Plug One", "Plug Wonder Why", "Mercenary") and David Jude Jolicoeur ("Trugoy the Dove", "Plug Two", "Dave") were already friends when Mason joined the pair to form De La Soul in 1987. The trio came to the attention of Prince Paul, then a member of Stetsasonic, with a demo recording of "Plug Tunin'". Paul facilitated a record deal for Mason and his colleagues with the Tommy Boy label and produced their first album, 3 Feet High and Rising.
Mason's role in De La Soul is primarily that of a DJ, with Mason stating that he is “a b-boy to my heart”, drawing inspiration from life experience and contemporary global events. However, Mason has also featured as a vocalist on songs such as "Ring Ring Ring (Ha Ha Hey)" (from De La Soul Is Dead) and for De La Soul's guest appearance on the Jungle Brothers recording, "Doin' Our Own Dang". Mason also recorded the introductory laugh for De La Soul's collaboration with Gorillaz, "Feel Good Inc.".
Mason is a native of Brooklyn, New York. Son of Dorothy Robinson and Vincent Mason. He is the oldest of two siblings. His younger brother is Anthony Mason. Vincent currently lives in West Palm Beach, Florida. Father of four children: Marcus, Tre, Chauncey and Dayo Mason. His son, Tre Mason, is a running back for the Los Angeles Rams. Tre was a finalist for the 2013 Heisman Trophy for the Auburn Tigers.
All three members of De La Soul have a variety of known aliases and nicknames used throughout the group's career. The following are the most significant:
- P.A. Pasemaster Mase – The first alias used by Mason, "Pasemaster" (or "P.A.") was used as an alternative to "DJ". Though "Mase" is simply a nickname for Mason, Mason noted in an early interview that the name can be an acronym for "Making A Soul Effort". Later, with the release of De La Soul is Dead, the nickname "Maseo" became widely used.
- Plug Three – An early concept for 3 Feet High and Rising involved music being transmitted from Mars by three microphone plugs (each one representing a member of the group). Though this idea was abandoned, the titles "Plug One", "Plug Two" and "Plug Three" still became relevant on the album.
- Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Biography: De La Soul". Allmusic. Retrieved October 14, 2010.
- shopdelasoul.com (2008). "Biography of De La Soul". shopdelasoul.com. shopdelasoul.com. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- Ashley Hyshka (September 21, 2011). "De La Soul member DJ Maseo hits up Saskatoon". The Sheaf. The Sheaf. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- "Ring Ring Ring (Ha Ha Hey) Lyrics". Lyrics Depot. LyricsDepot.com. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- "Jungle Brothers – Doin' Our Own Dang Lyrics". LYRICS007 – We Do Better Than James Bond. LYRICS007.COM, Inc. 2012. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- Stephen Carlick (October 15, 2010). "Gorillaz Air Canada Centre, Toronto ON October 14". exclaim.ca. Exclaim!. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- "Spitkicker.com". myspace. Myspace LLC. June 29, 2009. Retrieved May 4, 2012.
- Staff (February 14, 2011). "De La Soul’s DJ Maseo keeps it old school, just wants to be Tre Mason’s dad". The War Eagle Reader. Retrieved May 4, 2012.