IT IS not often that one meets a well-known artiste who makes good-humoured jibes about his weight in relation to his love for food.
Hip hop artiste Yogi B of Poetic Ammo confesses to having only one other love at the moment music.
He is raring to re-enter the local entertainment scene with a Tamil hip hop album guaranteed to rock your world.
I toyed around with the idea of coming up with a Tamil hip-hop album seven years ago when the Vallavan track in Poetic Ammos first album received rave reviews, said Yogi when we met for lunch at Chilis Grill & Bar, Suria KLCC.
But I had to shelve the idea after the group took off in a way we never anticipated.
Ive been lying low the past year, focusing all my efforts into putting together this album which I dare say is unique for its genre, he smiled broadly while perusing the menu.
Only Yogi and pal Point Blanc remain of the original quartet well known in Malaysia especially among hip hop loving youth.
Point Blanc is working on his own Chinese rap album, while Yogi, who founded the group, has a regular job as Boombox Records director.
His popularity as an artiste has not waned because he is accosted by fans at the restaurant and graciously obliges their requests for autographs.
Yogi is a tireless advocate for positive channelling of the energy possessed by youths.
Till today, there is no proper venue for youth to gather, socialise, perform and channel their thoughts and energy in the right direction. Given the right amount of passion and commitment, such a project can be set well into motion, he said.
On a lighter note, while munching on fries from his favourite meal, the Triple Play, Yogi makes funny faces for the StarMetro photographer Sam Tham who is pleased with his candid poses and light banter.
At Chilis, Yogi always orders the Triple Play, comprising a platter of deep-fried chicken crisps, buffalo wings and thick-cut fries with all the trimmings and sauces.
It goes without saying that as an American grill, the portions at Chili's are hefty.
His beverage of choice for lunch however was Pineapple Juice because of its great thirst-quenching ability and free refills.
He single-handedly downed four glasses during the meal and unabashedly said that he had room for more.
He also lets us in on why he prefers Chilis at KLCC and why the mall is almost his second home.
I just love the absolute openness of KLCC because hip-hoppers are basically mall rats and the habit defines urban youth.
We are also fashion mongrels and malls are ideal for gauging the current trends, he said.
Chilis offers a great view of the fountain, which has a hypnotic effect on me, and as for the party atmosphere after sundown, I just bask in it.
I can sit here for hours with friends. My pals and I are currently on a quest to sample the entire margarita menu, he said.
When not dining out, the 32-year-old artiste, who lives with his mother, eats at home because he cannot get enough of the traditional Indian dishes she lovingly prepares for him and his two younger sisters.
My mums spicy Sardine Sambal is to die for and her rasam (pepper stew enriched with tomatoes) is out of this world.
Theres no way Im going to slim down any time soon if she keeps feeding me the way she does, he said.
As an artiste, Yogi is hugely talented and, as a lunch companion, he is an equally entertaining barrel of laughs.
n CHILIS GRILL & BAR, Lot 346B, Level 3, Suria KLCC, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, Kuala Lumpur (Tel: 03-2164 1400). Business Hours: Daily (11am-midnight).