We took a moment to talk with our co-founder of Beat Sessions that's being aired bi-weekly on the iTunes Podcaster & Acast. Including beat makers from all over the earth in a mix that lasts 60 minutes. Please press play on his mix and read the full article!
How did it all start for you?
First off, I want to say I was blessed to have a father with great music taste growing up. He introduced so much to my siblings and I when we were little, which was key for us developing an ear for music. This is what basically led me to where i started becoming involved with music. Throughout my life, I always loved sharing music with anyone I knew. It was just so fun finding a new songs, sharing it so everyone had new music to listen to. Eventually it led to me starting up my ig as a page to post up music I would find on soundcloud. It was fun for a while but I felt like I wasn't doing enough to spread all this music around. That’s when I started getting curious about DJing officially.
Who is your biggest inspiration? / Who do you have a lot of respect for?
My closest friends are my biggest inspirations. Seeing them go after what they want and dream of, that really influenced me to do the same. They aren’t afraid of putting their creations out there and I have so much respect for that. They aren't making music or making art for the mass, they are doing it for themselves. They inspire me every day. Proud of you guys.
When did you start DJing - and what or who were your early passions and influences?
To be honest, I haven’t been in the scene for that long. I’m still quite new and this month marks my one year since I’ve began DJing officially. So, last year would be when I first started. As I mentioned before, one of my early passions was digging for music and posting them on IG to share with everyone. During my digging, I would come across mixes on soundcloud and thats when it sparked my interest. The way these DJ’s would put all these songs together that would take you on a journey amazed me. It’s like I understood a story they were telling through each song. All of this influenced me to start spinning the tunes I would find. Something that I can do to contribute to this scene. One DJ that had a huge influence because of the way he would spin tracks is Taimles. The way he would spin tracks is so smooth. All of them just flowed so well right into the next track. He set a standard for me on how to transition one track to the next.
What are currently your main challenges as a DJ? What is it about DJing, compared to, say, producing your own music, that makes it interesting for you?
A couple of my main challenges as a DJ is being able to transition different styles of music than just what I usually spin. Another main challenge would be not to be so critical on myself. A lot of the time, I feel like I’m not where I want to be on how I put together a mix, which can also be beneficial to me since it just makes me work on my craft more. Other than that, not too much. I’m just learning as I go along.
What makes DJing interesting for me is that I get to help spread music from the mixes I put together.
What do you usually start with when preparing for a set?.l
When I’m preparing a set, I go off of how I’m feeling at the moment. I think of a concept of what kind of story the mix is going to tell. It’s vital to making a good mix I believe. After thinking of a concept I find tracks that fit that concept and put them in order by bpm, as well as being able to flow together if that makes sense.
How would you describe your style?
I would describe my style as a mixture of boom bap and lofi!
What is it that you love about the scene?
One thing that really stands out to me in the scene is how open minded it is. From my experience so far, everyone I have met, isn't just stuck on one style of music. Everyone is just creating what they are feeling and I think that is awesome.
What is one track that never gets old for you no matter how many times you hear it?
Ooohhhh man. One track that I can listen to that will never get old is memory lane by Nas. That track takes me back with my friend Divine. Too many good memories from that track haha.
How is the beat-scene in Los Angeles as of right now?
From what I’ve learned, it has grown so much than what is used to be back then. It’s really nice to see more shows happening now. It still has a long way to go, but I’m really glad to see where it has grown now.
Thank you for the interview Donovan, is there anything you like to add?
Yes I would. For anyone out there, it’s never to late to start making music or being involved with music in any way. If it’s what you want, go after it, go create. You are never too old to start. Something my friend Divine told me when I was getting into DJing and putting thoughts behind starting to produce music.