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Black Eyed Peas Launch First U.S. Tour

Multiplatinum L.A. hip-hoppers hit the road on their own

January 9, 2006 12:00 AM ET

Black Eyed Peas will headline the sixth edition of the annual Honda Civic Tour, set to kick off on March 23rd in Fresno, California. Surprisingly, given the Peas' multiplatinum and Grammy-nominated Monkey Business, the tour marks the Los Angeles hip-hop ensemble's first-ever headlining trek in their own country.

"I'm excited about going out in the States and doing our own thing in our own venues, our own stage, people there for us," frontman Will.I.Am told Rolling Stone following a Friday press conference at Honda's American headquarters in L.A. The band performed five songs at the event, including "Let's Get It Started," "My Humps" and "Where Is the Love?"

Traditionally the tour — previously headlined by Incubus, Blink-182 and Dashboard Confessional — is a package deal, and this year will be no exception. Will says the band has given a lot of thought to who they'd like to take out. "We've had long conversations about who we gonna bring, what's smart, what aesthetically is cool. We just have to think about it and do it right."

As part of a ubiquitous 2005 that saw them perform at the Grammys and Super Bowl, the Peas opened for the Rolling Stones, when the latter kicked off their record-breaking world tour at Boston's Fenway Park last August. Perhaps the Peas could get the rock legends to return the favor? "Yeah, we'll be like, 'Yo, look, we hooked you all up. We'll give you guys fifteen minutes,'" Will says with a laugh. "No, I'm kidding! That'd be funny as fuck, though."

As part of the tour, one fan will win an eco-friendly Honda Civic Hybrid — the car runs on electric-power and fuel — customized by the band. The super-supped-up Peas-mobile features custom metallic paint designs, Black Eyed Peas graphics and the band members' autographs, a multimedia system and a special Peas PA system. Before being given away, the car made an appearance in the video for "Pump It," which the group filmed this past weekend in downtown L.A.

But while the band's headlining the tour, that doesn't mean they get their Hondas for free. "I'm like, 'Give me eighty Hybrids!'" Will jokes. "No, I'm gonna buy me one."

"Hey, we're always getting free stuff," adds Peas diva Fergie. Fellow MC Apl.de.Ap says with a wink, "It's better to buy for the tax purposes."

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