‘Baby’ got longevity: Sir Mix-A-Lot’s game-changing hit to turn 25 in 2017

Anthony Ray — aka Sir Mix-A-Lot — still loves an intimate rap show, which is why the man who made the big butt immortal will perform at Seattle’s 475-person-capacity Nectar Lounge on Thursday and Friday, Feb. 2 and 3.

“I’ve been playing a lot of big arenas — especially over the last three years,” Ray says. “Don’t get me wrong, they’re cool and pay real well, but if you truly care about your craft then you gotta get in front of a crowd that’s right in your face.”

In other words, for Ray, live music is still very much about being up close with the people. And he’s noticed this same quality in other Emerald City (Hall of Fame) stalwarts.

“I saw Pearl Jam at KeyArena a few years back, and the show was sold out. So they did a bonus show the next night at the Showbox,” recalls the Seattle native. “That’s what I’m talking about! I like to get down and dirty — that’s where real performers are made. Give me James Brown in his prime in a theater that holds 800 people.”