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Interview with DJ Qualls from Memphis Beat

DJ Qualls, who plays Davey Sutton on TNT’s Memphis Beat, recently spoke to the press about his role on the show, how it is to work with Jason Lee, and some of what we can expect this season. He was a really nice guy to interview, and it was obvious he loves his character and his job, which is always great to hear. If you haven’t seen this show, check out what it’s about now, and then read on to see what DJ had to say!

Memphis Beat centers on Dwight Hendricks (Jason Lee), a quirky Memphis police detective with an intimate connection to the city, a passion for blues music, and a close relationship with his mother. He is ‘the keeper of Memphis,’ a Southern gentleman who is protective of his fellow citizens, reverential of the city’s history, and deeply rooted in its blues music scene.

Despite his impeccable instincts as a detective, Dwight’s loose, relaxed style of police work rubs his demanding new boss, Lt. Tanya Rice (Alfre Woodard), the wrong way. But Dwight may eventually win her over to a Memphis state of mind, especially when he takes the stage at his favorite hangout to perform a legendary song or two.

Davey Sutton (Qualls) fancies himself to be Dwight’s protégé, but he still has much to learn about being a cop. He often tries too hard in his quest to be successful and appreciated. Folks like Davey so much because there’s never any question that his heart is in the right place. And every once in a while, Davey’s homespun philosophy and his insight regarding Memphis and its people prove to be valuable.”

On what keeps him challenged about playing a police officer

DJ Qualls: Well, this year we had – this show has totally changed. We shifted more to a more serious, I think, procedural kind of show.

We’re still trying to keep the quirks that we had last season but this year we’re focused, I think, more on the crime, a little less on, sort of, the quirk of being in the south. And also, last year, my character was – he was more, sort of, finding his footing you know as a brand new cop. And this year, I’m actually getting to do more cop work.

And I find that more interesting because I don’t often get to play a lot of serious roles. And especially with the next episode, which is – every year, I get one episode that’s a Sutton episode on my character.

So episode 4, which is next week, you really see – I find a baby. And it’s probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. But it was beautiful. I’ve seen it and I’m so excited for the audience to see it.

[Note from Jenny: That is tonight’s episode.]
Jump with us to see what else DJ had to say. Continue reading

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