Breaking Beats: Interview with RJ Mitte

Matallana_RJ Mitte_030114_0856

Last week I had the pleasure of interviewing RJ Mitte before he arrived in B.C. for his show in Prince George on his Breaking Beats tour. As a huge fan of the show Breaking Bad, I was really interested to see what RJ Mitte a.k.a. Walt Jr. a.k.a Flynn of Breaking Bad was up to. His new project Breaking Beats sounds awesome, and RJ himself is completely inspiring. He is constantly on the go, and he kills it in the PMA (positive mental attitude) department. He was super genuine and a great guy to chat with- he even put up with me being a huge nervous dork! I’m stoked to share this interview with you! If you get the chance to check out Breaking Beats in a city near you, don’t miss it!


Matallana_RJ Mitte_030114_0730

Congratulations on the success of Breaking Bad. You played an amazing role. How has your life changed since being on the show?

RJ: It gave me a career, and a different opportunity that I was able to be a part of. Not a lot of people are lucky enough to be given a role that gives them a career and that’s what Breaking Bad did for me. It gave me a chance to learn and grow in so many different directions.

What was the biggest lesson you took away from being a part of Breaking Bad?

RJ: You can learn from acting classes and take as many courses as you want but at the end of the day what really matters is being on set and putting the work in, and being a part of a crew and everything that comes with that.

You’re coming here to Prince George, BC, for Breaking Beats, which is a totally different direction for you. Can you tell us about Breaking Beats?

RJ: I started on this tour, and I’ve done four gigs so far- ever, working in this type of industry. The tour started in New York, and then went to Jersey, and then to Vegas, Arizona, and now to Prince George. I’m always working, I’m always doing something- if it’s not acting, I’m doing modeling. If it’s not modeling, I’m doing work with non-profits and other organizations. I’ve been working like this for a while now and constantly going in all these different directions and it’s always important to step out of a realm of comfort. When I do speaking tours, and speak at universities, one of my main focuses is always on stepping out of a realm of comfort and not allowing yourself to be manipulated by the fear of that.

Have you always been like that? What gives you the motivation to pursue all these new things even though they it might be scary sometimes?

RJ: I think my main motivation is that I don’t like to be stagnant for too long. I always like to keep going, and keep moving forward on something. This [Breaking Beats] was an opportunity for me to learn, and I’m learning so much, but I still have such a long way to go. It’s such an important aspect to be able to learn, to absorb, to take in information and I always find that is something that is forever changing.

Have you always had an interest in DJing or is this a more recent discovery?

RJ: I was interested in doing this when I was younger. I was 14 or 15 when I got into mixing. I was mixing just shorts and little clips that I was using just for personal stuff. So I was into that and I got a bunch of equipment and I was learning to do it, and all my equipment actually got stolen and then I just stopped doing it. I mentioned it to my agent one time… and the next thing I know it just kept evolving and it turned into what it is now.

You have a DJ that opens up for you on your Breaking Beats tour. Can you tell us what it’s like to work with her?

RJ: I do, I do. I actually just saw her yesterday. Her name is DJ Mia, and she’s actually who I’ve been working with for the past couple months now. She’s awesome, she does a 30-minute set before me, and then I come on.

What kind of music do you play in your set, and what kind of music do you like to listen to?

RJ: I listen to everything from classical to heavy metal to hip-hop and trap and RnB to house and acid and trance. The set that I’ve been playing is mostly trap and house- I find that that is to a degree what people want to hear more. But I try to mix it up as much as possible, and I try to add Breaking Bad music to it to keep with the theme. But I’m forever changing and learning and trying to understand, so I’m still trying to find that sound… This is the thing, everyone has this opportunity. You can go and do whatever you want to do, you don’t have to be stuck in one area, but the thing is, you do have to work at it- you do have to take a major risk. I think the risk is what people are afraid to take, but more people need to.

How do you get over that fear of taking risks? What is it that gets you to cross that line?

RJ: I just feel it’s important. If you don’t allow yourself to take that risk and evolve and learn and grow with that, and have trial and error, you’ll just grow so much slower. You need to be able to fall down to learn how to get back up.

You’re a great role model, do you feel any pressure that comes along with that- being in the spotlight, and having people look up to you?

RJ: I don’t always try to be a role model. What I try to do is to show people who they are themselves. That’s what I think is the most important. I don’t find that is as much as my other responsibilities. I have a few of them, so I’m mostly concerned with those, and from that, fuels everything else- I feel. You always have that one thing that motivates you and trickles over to everything else you do.

So you mentioned that you work with some non-profit organizations. Can you tell us a bit about those and how other people can get involved?

RJ: Yes, but I think the one thing is that people shouldn’t just support any cause. Make sure you support a cause that you personally believe in- not so much my cause. I think that’s one of the things I’ve discovered is actually finding people that really care about not so much someone else’s cause, but their own personal cause- what they believe in, and finding an organization that represents that. I’ve been lucky enough to find that, and I work with Shriners Hospital for children and other hospitals. I work with SAG-AFTRA, I’m on the diversity committee. I often sit on a board out of Austin, Texas, and I’m always doing something with different organizations that are trying to bring awareness to diversity in the media and stepping out of a realm of comfort.

As if you aren’t busy enough with all that…do you have anything else on the go?

RJ: Well, I’m learning DJing and mixing better and practicing that a lot right now. I audition, audition, audition, and I’m looking at possible new projects that I’m able to be a part of. Just keep moving forward, I do modeling, and I’m just always trying to create something that we can enjoy.

Do you ever have any free time? What do you do to relax?

RJ: I do and I don’t. Right now, I’m kind of free at the moment, but I leave tomorrow to head up to Prince George. I play video games- Call of Duty, mostly, and then I sleep. Lots and lots of sleeping, and I’m trying to recover from all my previous trips.

Lastly, going back to Breaking Bad…you’re known for you scenes at the breakfast table. Are you really a breakfast fanatic? What’s your favourite?

RJ: I am, and I’m not. Most of the time I end up eating breakfast between 2 and 4am. But I’m a bacon fan, I do love bacon. Bacon, eggs, sausage, hash browns- the whole nine yards, man.

Matallana_RJ Mitte_030114_0962

Keep up with RJ Mitte on Twitter and Facebook and Instagram

Photo Credit: Daniel Martinez Matallana