Imagine if you became famous, but some other famous person used your name, too. This is what is happening with Fergie (the Black Eyed Pea) and Fergie the DJ — who now lists his name as “Fergie DJ.”
“The DJ on the end is to make people aware,” Fergie DJ says, “so people won’t get confused and wonder why I don’t have long hair and a set of tits.”
This Fergie-Fergie thing has been going on for a while.
In 2010, Fergie the DJ flew to Las Vegas for a holiday, walked off the plane and saw a big billboard advertising an upcoming nightclub appearance by Fergie the Black Eyed Pea.
“That (expletive) annoyed me,” the Northern Irish DJ says without malice and with a laugh.
“So when she came out and said she was pregnant and wasn’t going to be performing, I was like, ‘Thank the Lord. I hope she has many’ babies.”
That’s right. Fergie the Black Eyed Pea went on hiatus. And Fergie DJ performs at MGM’s Hakkasan nightclub so frequently, he is a signature act there.
This weekend alone, he and Tiesto will spin Friday night at Hakkasan . Then Fergie plays Saturday at MGM’s Wet Republic day pool. And then he headlines Saturday night at Hakkasan.
Fortunately, he is back to performing as “Fergie.” Last year, he moved from Europe to Henderson (to be closer to the Vegas action), and he briefly changed his performance name to Rob Guson.
Rob Guson isn’t even Fergie’s real name. His real name is Rob Ferguson.
But the Black Eyed Pea thing had got to him, so boom, he was Rob Guson.
Another reason he changed his name was to fit his evolving DJ style. He used to spin underground house party music. Now he spins party hits.
But Fergie fans weren’t buying the “Rob Guson” thing.
“I was playing” a gig, Fergie says. “I was on the megaphone, and I was like, ‘This is Rob.’ But I couldn’t believe how many people came up to me and said, ‘No, you’re Fergie.’
“It just felt so weird.”
So now Fergie is Fergie again.
I saw Fergie perform last year at Wet Republic for Prince Harry on the weekend when the prince went all crazy with ladies and cameras at the Wynn. Fergie and I even strolled over to the prince’s cabana.
Last weekend, I saw Fergie again, and he was stellar, as usual. The guy moves a crowd with big tracks. And Deadmau5 swung by to hang in Fergie’s DJ booth.
“I just play things I like, and things I would like to hear if I was at a party,” Fergie says.
He has a new visual show at Hakkasan. It’s sort of a cross between the robe-and-mask movie “Eyes Wide Shut” and Marquee’s old “Party Rock” Mondays.
The “Eyes Wide Shut” part: Fergie, and cocktailers, and stilt-walkers and little people wear robes and masks and such.
The “Party Rock” part: Clubbers can show up in colorful outfits.
“They can just wear whatever they want,” Fergie says.
Fergie himself will mix things up.
“I bought so many weird costumes, it’s unbelievable. We’ve got loads of Care Bear heads and all these weird things.”
To me, though, the thing that stands out most about Ferguson isn’t just his partying ways, or his DJ prowess, but how nice the guy is.
Fergie has been performing for screaming fans for two decades, so you might think he isn’t impressed by fame. But he is, and you can hear the humility in his voice.
“They put me on the front page of the paper in Northern Ireland. That was something I never expected. I couldn’t believe it,” he says. “Like, ‘Holy (expletive)!’ ”
And now his face adorns those giant video billboards all over the MGM.
“For me, seeing my big face on the side of the MGM Grand — the boy from Larne — is something I never thought I would have seen,” he says.
“It’s surreal,” he says. “You go through all these years of watching movies and seeing the Rat Pack, and all of a sudden, my (expletive) face is on the side of it!”
Doug Elfman’s column appears on Page 3A in the main section on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. He also writes for Neon on Fridays. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He blogs at reviewjournal.com/elfman.