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Archive for #WesSmith

Do the Uprock by Wes Smith

Back at it again with not just a Califunkya but a Califournya version of “Do The Uprock”. Both tunes pack enough heat to have the crowd bouncin’ all night. As always, the Califunkya Mix breaks the beat while the Califournya Mix features four on the floor action.

Related Links: [Get Email] [Get Social]

 

 

 

 

It’s Wes Smith Yo – The Album Remixed Vol 1 : DJ Hero Interview

Next up in the interview series is DJ Hero.  I’ve always enjoyed the variety in his sounds and was pumped to have him jump in on the remix project.   While we have not met in person, we’ve connected through mutual friends over at XeroTribe and chat in bits and pieces over the last year.  I’ve found his perspective on music refreshing and worldly insights fun to follow.

Interview by Kelly Ross | Agent 137

Where does the name “DJ Hero” come from?

When I was young, I used to draw comic books. One day, when I was 19, I was sitting at my house with my roommate, doodling. I had just recently started DJ’ing. I wouldn’t even consider myself a DJ that point. I sat there, at the table drawing, while my roommate sat across from me reading. I had set my drawing pad down, and gotten up to go refill our coffee cups. When I returned to the table, my roommate had drawn the Superman “S” on the chest of the little DJ character I had been drawing. Before I could say anything, he said “that’s you, you’re DJ Hero”. I erased the “S” from the shield, and added a DJ. It just sort of stuck. To me a hero is someone that sets an example and is an inspiration for people. If I was the normal guy, then DJ Hero would be my muse to be more than I was; to be a better person. I hope that over time, as DJ Hero, I’ve inspired other people to be and do more with their own lives through my music and hopefully the example I’ve tried to set.

DJ Hero - Shield Logo

Your label is named Solitude Studios – what’s in a name?

I have been a bit of a loner all my life, and not a fan of big crowds or busy places. My studio is my place to get away from the rigors of the outside world, or packed clubs, venues, and festivals. I tend to think more clearly, and more creatively when I sit in peace. When I finally built my studio it seemed only fitting to call it “Solitude Studios”. Later, a friend of mine pointed out that Superman’s home is called the “Fortress of Solitude”, making me that much more of a nerd.

I listened to a few Solitude Studio podcasts today. Tell me how that started.

Several years ago, the podcast started as a radio show on United Breaks FM. From there, it moved to Party 95 out of Orlando. After several years on Party 95, and shortly after I started Solitude Studios, the record label, I changed the radio show to a Podcast I aired myself, once a month. Originally, the weekly radio show spotlighted the most popular breaks of the time. I tried to make the show put breaks in a good light. As my tastes evolved, I started adding other sounds and styles. Today the podcast is my way of showcasing the latest Solitude Studios release. The podcast’s sound each month, directly reflects the style of the release. As my own sound grows and expands, so will the podcast’s.

Solitude Studios Logo (JPEG), with slogan, Alternate

Talk to me about Denver. How you arrived, why you stay, what the music landscape is like etc.

In 2007, I was touring with Huda Hudia. The last stop on the tour was Denver, Colorado. I loved it. I loved the climate, the view, the city, and instantly clicked with the group of people we had met at that gig. At the time I was living in Atlanta, Georgia, and had been in the south for upwards of 12 years. I hated it. I was tired of the dirty south. A little over a month later, I had moved to Denver. I thought I wanted to move back to Florida in 2014. After getting there, it took me about 7 months before I was back in Denver, I missed it so much. This is my home now.

Denver is the birth place of Beatport, so the music scene has always been pretty hot. We’ve also got some pretty famous clubs, from Vinyl that over the past 20 years has hosted just about every one of the biggest DJ’s, to The Church, which is a gorgeous converted Catholic church, to Beta, which is now one of the country’s super clubs. We’ve also got some pretty successful promoters that have had their hands in some massive events.

There really isn’t much to complain about out here from a musical stand point.

When you sit down and listen for tunes to play or remix, what do you look for?

I look for originality and production quality. I look for tracks that are unique. As the use of premade and purchased sample packs increases, I’ve decided I would rather steer clear of them. I applaud the companies that have created successful businesses around selling the packs. And, I feel there is a place for good sampling, that’s what so much of my generation’s music is founded on, from hip hop, to pop music, to dance music. But I feel relying on sample packs and construction kits is lazy, and ultimately decreases sound quality. You can’t alter the effects already on the samples, so producers are limited in how much they can manipulate their sounds to specifically fit with the sounds they produce themselves. When I look for tracks for my own virtual record bag, I look for tracks that don’t sound they’ve come from those packs. When I look for tunes to remix, I try to choose tunes that I can’t use my own original production to make the remix sound top notch and unique.

Aside from that, when I’m looking for new music, I try to avoid blatant drug references and sexists or abusive lyrics. I don’t do drugs, I don’t party like that. It’s just not my thing. And, the bad lyrics and vocals are just annoying. I don’t really want to hear some MC demoralizing woman. Again, that goes back to the “DJ Hero” name sake. I just don’t think either is a good look, and doesn’t set a good example.

DJ HERO LOGO

What’s the Hero/Wes Smith connection?

A while back I was listening to a mixed set online while hiking with my dog. In the mix was a pretty cool track that I couldn’t ID. I reached out to the DJ that posted the mix, and he said it was Wes Smith’s remix of his track. I heard a new/different remix in my head, so I asked if I could have a go at a remix. The DJ agreed, and sent me the remix pack. After going through the remix pack, I noticed it was missing one of the pieces I really liked about Wes’s remix. At that point I reached out to Wes for the part I wanted. Once Wes sent it to me, I completed the remix and sent it to the original producer of the tune, and to Wes (because he had given me a pieces from his remix of it). Wes seemed to enjoy the remix quite a bit, and, later, asked if I would remix one of the tunes on his album “It’s Wes Smith Yo!” The rest is history.

DJ Hero 4

What’s some advice you would like to pass on?

If I could say just one thing to every would-be producer looking to make music, I would say “be you”. Make the music you want to make. Don’t try to make something that sounds like the other guy. Don’t make music to be cool or successful, do it to express yourself. But, I never want to say just one thing, so let me add this; Take your time, make mistakes. Suck for a while, because you’re supposed to. Learn your craft. Prevent yourself from taking short cuts. Learn humility, because not everyone is going to like you, people are going to lie to you, blow smoke up your ass, hate on you, etc. And, that is OK….be you.

Beyond that, don’t send a label an unfinished track. That’s the fastest way to be skipped over when the label goes to listen to the demos in their in box. Label your work properly; Artist Name – Track Title (Mix Title). If the label doesn’t know who and what they are listening to, they won’t follow up and try to find you. Instead they’ll find another track. Take some pride in your work.

After Turntable Sax, what’s next for DJ Hero?

I’m going to keep making new music. After really contemplating who “DJ Hero” is over the past two years or so, I’ve come to the decision that I love far too many sounds, and too many genres to limit myself to just ‘breaks’. That said, I’m going to make whatever inspires me, be it breaks, house, trap, or anything else for that matter. The goal is to create music that can span the genres in one mixed set.

Related links:

[DJ Hero : Soundcloud] [DJ Hero : Mixcloud] [Wes Smith Original]

It’s Wes Smith Yo – The Album Remixed Vol 1 : DJ Smooth Interview

Hey hey friends, today I’m kicking off the interview series for my forthcoming remix album.  First up is DJ Smooth out of Orlando.   I met up with Mike about 6 months back b/w of the Funky Flavor crew who brought me out in the summer.   He recently reworked “Hands Up” and then had a nice chat with our head field agent about all things BASS…  Peep the interview below…

Interview by Kelly Ross | Agent 137

Tell me about your start:
I started the Scratch Academy in Miami about 4 years ago where I learned the basics on vinyl, etc for 6 months and then I moved to Orlando.

How did you come to do a remix for this album?
I met Scotty Frazier [Funky Flavor Breakbeat Culture] and I showed Scotty a few projects so Scotty introduced me to Wes Smith and he hit me up to do a remix.

What’s the DJ Smooth spin on the remix?
My style brings in electro and trap elements with a breaks flavor.

Smooth logo

What else are you working on right now?
Goldillox [Danielle Wells] and I have a new project called HYPER MONK3Y and we have about 20 tracks together already. We are looking to drop that closer to the Winter Music Conference in Miami, it’s really high energy and a lot of fun. Also, I have another collab with a friend in Tampa we just did a show together for Halloween as HardCastle & McCormick. We work really well together and have a darker trap style.

HYPER MONK3Y33

Thank you, Mike! Good luck on your new projects, the release and see you in Miami in March.

Related links: [Get Notified on the Release] [Support the Original] [Website : Wes Smith] [Facebook : DJ Smooth] [Facebook : HardkastleNMcormick] [Facebook : HyperMonkey] [Soundcloud : DJ Smooth] [Soundcloud : HardKastle&McCormick]

Interview with Trenton Thompson of Tech D Records

Aloha friends…A few days ago I made a post about Heart Break feat. Goldillox, my latest remix project to hit the streets.  Here’s the much anticipated full interview with Tech D label boss, Trenton Thompson.

Interview by Kelly Ross | Agent 137

I sat down with Trenton Thompson Owner/Operator/Producer/DJ at Tech D Records aka Aeon Flex to discuss their new release Heart Break EP Feat. Goldillox by Aeon Flex & Shade K, what it means to be a label owner and more.

Why did you decide to start a label?

I started with a marketing degree, I knew I wanted to be in business but at the time I didn’t go into it fro music related purposes but it seemed like a degree that would make sense. The hands on experience really helped me start the label. Also being a DJ the better part of 20 years,  I realized the market was being flooded by producers. I was submitting tracks but had become sick of the bureaucracy waiting for release dates just to hope that it may get good exposure. At that point I decided to start my own label to speed up the release process myself. I started slow with 3 artists and went on a mass marketing spree, I ordered hundreds of giveaways and just gave them away. We will be 2 years old come January and we now we have 125 people on the label.

Tech D2

Tell us in layman’s terms what it means to be on a label. What do you do for the artists on Tech D?

It depends on the artist level, we do everything from signing aspiring artists to get a portfolio started, to catapulting established artists on world tours. Some like Noel Sanger and Shade K manage themselves but usually we manage the up and coming with artist development to prevent what I call a “failure to launch”. Developing them in ways they do not know how to do or access.

Do you have any advice for aspiring producers and djs?
If we reject someone’s tune we try to do it with finesse and send out tutorials because some people take it as the end of the world. My advice is don’t be discouraged if you don’t hear back, everyone is busy it may take time. You may have spent all this time on one track but ready to come back with 3-4 more tracks if the first one hits and don’t stop promoting yourself. Build up a portfolio and doing that comes with experience and confidence, just don’t expect a lot of royalties when you are building your résumé.

Let’s talk about the release how did you choose Goldillox for the vocals?

I had already been working with Shade K and Royal Blood but when I first got to Florida I saw Goldillox perform at the Old Firestone. Her stage presence was absolutely jaw dropping and I knew I wanted to work with her immediately. Once we started working with her I realized she didn’t need much development at all and the rest is history.

GOLDILLOX

How did you choose Wes for the remix?

I have been playing Wes’s tracks since I started playing breakbeat and I kept seeing more and more Juice shirts around. I thought it would be a great political musical move to bring him in and do a track with him. There is a reason why he is winning awards, he is versatile and has been building a tremendous status along with people of great stature giving him global support. Even so, he has great humility and doesn’t have a cocky bone in his body. We even met his mom – most people need to realize we are all just people. Usually the ego is all on the DJ side but if this music machine went bankrupt tomorrow it would simply just bring everyone together – again we are all just people here.

What’s your motto?
FAMILY VALUES, we are all one, it’s NOT A competition.

I want to mention that we talked about supporters and family during the interview. Trenton and I both would like to give out a special shout to Adam Butterfield (_040_)  and Angel Dejournett-O’Dell:

Angel & Adam – they know to put on the game face and Tech D is indebted to them, they have definitely helped me grow and mature. All people have a role in this and they are true conduits and are just as important in that role to make connections.

You can find the Heart Break EP Feat. Goldillox (Wes Smith Remix) by Aeon Flex & Shade K here: [Buy it here: Beatport]

Related links: [Tech D Records] [Aeon Flex] [Goldillox] [Wes Smith] [Alekay] [Shade K]

Big Ups to Australia’s Big Bass Party show for feat. Killa Sound (Wes Smith Remix) by Dub Pistols

How cool is this? …along with the super awesome release of my remix of Killa Sound for the Dub Pistols, we also snagged this phat premiere with Australia’s Big Bass Party.  They have interviewed all kinds of awesome bass music producers but for this one we flip the script and interview them.  Kelly Ross | Agent 137 takes on the mission to wrangle them from the outback and find out what they are all about!

Interview with Sang Pham [Sangers] by Kelly Ross | Agent 137

Tell us about Big Bass Party:

Big Bass Party is a radio show on Radio Metro 105.7FM on the Gold Coast in Australia. It reaches Brisbane as well as the two cities are very close. The show airs weekly and is recorded and podcasted on iTunes. We have over 2000 subscribers to the podcast and it’s downloaded in something like 80 countries around the world, but most popular in Australia, USA, Russia and Germany. We play every kind of Bass music and focus on brand new music. We never repeat a song, unless it’s a special episode like a finale, and sometimes feature interviews with Bass artists or premiere their new music.

Big Bass Party

How did it all start?:

We’ve had had the opportunity to run a radio show on Radio Metro for a while and we had always passed it up as we felt we were too busy with our production and shows. After I guest hosted a radio show in Perth one weekend, I realized how fun and easy it could be; there were lots of benefits, so Ra and I decided to give it a go. When the two of us started the show, there was dance music on mainstream radio (in Australia) but not as much as there is now. These days, dance music dominates the airwaves here. Australia is very isolated so our music scene has its own trends; we take leads from the UK and the states but often a genre can be more popular here. I didn’t feel Bass music was getting enough exposure on the air here and saw that as an opportunity for Big Bass Party to fill that gap.

radio-metro

What music works on the show?:

Genre-wise, all kinds of Bass music, from Trap to Breaks, Hip Hop to Drum and Bass – everything. As DJs, we tend to collect music that’s dance floor focused. We tend to ignore or sleep on tunes that are too chill or in the wrong key. The radio show has given us a completely different perspective on dance music as it’s an opportunity to play music that just sounds cool. Some of the best songs we’ve aired have just been very pleasing to the ears and not dance floor bangers at all. So personally, hosting the show has really expanded my musical palette.

Three seasons in, has the show evolved?:

The approach is quite the same, but the genres we play more of and the presenting cast have been through some changes. I started the show with Ra. Right now, we’re going in different directions musically. We’re still great friends, we talk heaps and we still work on projects together – we just put an original song out recently. But musically we’re on different paths. Ra stopped doing the show towards the end of Season One, so I asked Dave from Datadex, to come on board. Dave is an old friend of mine from ADICTS – an events promotion business that we started about 10 years ago here in Brisbane. Dave and I did the show for a season and a half and had Katie Karma as our interviewer / field reporter. Whenever Dave was away, Kaite would fill in. Dave moved to the US after Season Two, so we decided to swap their roles and have Katie in the studio and Dave do interviews from LA. Katie brings a different dynamic to the show with her love of Bass House and it’s always nice to have a female voice on the air.

Katie Kama

How do you choose your tunes for the show?:

We’re always on the hunt for tunes that fit all the different sub-genres of Bass. We try to represent all the different demographics and cover the entire globe. If there are tracks that cross genre barriers, that’s a bonus. Often we’ll be inspired or excited by a new artist we’ve just discovered, we find a few of the tracks they’ve just put out and we’ll play one on each show over the next few weeks. Also promos come through from labels and sometimes an artist will hit us up directly with an opportunity to debut one of their tunes.

Tell me about your connection to Wes Smith:

It seemed that Wes came out of nowhere. As a breaks fan, I’m generally aware of who’s doing well in the scene and who’s doing well in the Beatport charts. But I only started really paying attention to him once he hit #1.

Since I’ve been exposed to him, Wes has been pretty solid in my eyes. When Barry [from the DubPistols] sent us the remix pack for their new tune, Wes’ remix was the one that really stood out. We also featured one of his tunes on the Punks Special and that episode was on track to be the most listened to on the Big Bass Party SoundCloud page, until it was taken down.

Wes has established his position in the Breaks scene in a very short time, which is pretty hard to do these days since the Breaks scene is fairly well established now. For anyone that was at that top tier when Breaks reached its peak – like Stanton Warriors [Punks], Plump DJs, Krafty Kuts etc – they’re always going to hold position on that top rung. I can’t see anyone breaking that top tier of Breaks really. It’s all about getting on that next rung down and somehow Wes came out of the pack and very quickly established himself at that level, which is HUGE. Breaks is starting to see a bit of a revival and if it gets back to where it once was, I can definitely see Wes rising to the top along with the scene.

Big Bass Punks

What advice can you give to someone breaking into the industry?:

One thing, is perhaps taking lead from Wes: he’s genuinely a great guy; he’s very approachable, great to speak to, is passionate about his music and seems genuine. It’s a small scene and everyone knows each other very well, so getting along with one another is vital. You’re not going get far if you are an asshole – being a likeable person really helps. We’re all trying to help each other and push something together and if you’re easy to be around and supportive of others in the scene, people will tend to want to be around you and want to see you succeed.

Do you have any advice for new producers?

You really have to love the music and I urge you to really consider if you really want that life. It’s going to be hard – passion is the only thing that will push you through. You have to act on every opportunities you’re given because they might not come around again. Even if you think you’re not 100% ready for an opportunity like a remix or release, do the best you can and let the label or artist you’re remixing decide if it’s not good enough. These things have a habit of spawning other opportunities. Production wise – find a balance of doing what you love but also make sure there is a market for it. In order to break into a scene, there has to be a scene to break into. You might be lucky if you’re a genius producer and are able to create a whole new genre, but in most cases, if you want to play gigs, you’re going to have to fit into gigs that other DJs are already playing. That said, don’t sell out and lose yourself and your style – it’s all about balance.

Dub Pistol

Whats next for you?

Touring the USA! I have wanted to do that for a long time. I’ve been touring Europe every year for the past four years and the gigs keep getting better and better there but I’ve realised it’s now or never to try to break into the US scene. The bass scene in the states is growing quickly right now and I really want to be a part of it in its early stages. Musically I’m going at my own pace right now. I don’t set any production deadlines for myself like I use to. I don’t put any pressure on myself to get a release out at any regularity. I just hop in the studio whenever I’m inspired by something or get an idea. I’ve learned over time that I used to overcommit and place too much pressure on myself to meet self-set goals. Learning to say no to remixes or production requests was really hard to do at first but finding that balance has made me happier and in turn made it easier to make better music. So I have a few things in the bag both by myself and with Ra but I won’t promise you’ll see anything soon, I’ll just surprise you!

 

Related links: [Beatport link] [Website: Big Bass Party] [Website: Wes Smith]

 

Revelation @ District 3 this weekend w/Freestylers, Kimball Collins, Wes Smith, Huda Hudia, Jesse Perez, Martin Flex & More!

Check me out in Tampa this weekend @ Revelation featuring a gaggle of international, domestic and local talent.

Tampa 2

Get warmed up with some fresh beats from my Soundcloud.

Costumes are encouraged to rock your favorite Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Comic Book, Cartoon, Original Alter Ego Anime or Superheroes costume with cash prizes for the winner!

Tampa 1

Related links:

[TICKETS] [District3 Website] [Facebook Event Page]

 

It’s Wes Smith Yo! Tour Burning Man 2015 @ Camp Charlie

Unicorns are not an illusive myth at Burning Man, this one is real and if you look out into the distance and see the magical Charlie horn blowing fire you will find it. You just have to believe the fugu is real. My last (but definitely not least) interviews are with our fearless leader of our camp, DivaDanielle and Sarah S. a long time unicorn and co-organizer (also with Travis Payne) of Wes Smith’s Thursday event, Noodlecorns.

Charlie 4

Tell me a little about Camp Charlie and the fabulous unicorn art car:

Danielle: This is Charlie’s 5th trek to the playa. We pride ourselves on having top-notch music with a silly vibe. We like house and breaks – always with a funky twist. Charlie was originally built in 2011 and we’ve made some major upgrades this year including a Danley sound system (provided by ChinoSound), all new fabrics, a ton of structural upgrades and a brand spankin’ new fire system.

Sarah: I was a HUGE fan of the cartoon already. When two of my best friends and roommates Adam & Niles (of Fleetwood Smack) told me that someone was bringing a Charlie the Unicorn Art Car to the playa, I just went nuts! I knew I HAD to be involved.

Charlie 3

What is a Noodlecorn?

Sarah: Our good friends Tasty Noodles have a really fun event out in the Mojave desert a couple of times each year. So many of the Camp Charlie Unicorns go or have gone, that the lines between Unicorn and Noodler have become quite blurred. We’ve started referring to ourselves as NoodleCorns if we identify with both groups. Additionally, quite a few Noodlers have joined Camp Charlie, and vice versa. Both camps are now part of the Sunset Trip village on playa, so we’re all quite close, literally and figuratively.

Charlie Noodlecorn

Tell me about the Noodlecorn event: 

We’re starting off our Thursday Night (September 3rd) on Charlie with a bit of house from SomeKindaWeirdo (Jake Dempsey), then comes our Breakbeat Smackdown with Co-Host Friskie Business (Travis Payne), Wes Smith, and Lou E. Bagels. The NoodleCorn Sunrise kicks off before dawn with NoodleCorn favorites Liquorbox, Leo Altmann, and Juneau. Rounding things off and taking us fully into the light of day are Erik Nelson and John Kurtz & Reavis, with extended morning sets.

Who is your team for Thursday Night?

Sarah: Travis (Payne) and I go back about 17 years. We both worked for Buzz in Washington, D.C., I was heading up promotion for Buzz, Fever, and Ultraworld, and Travis was doing design work for Buzz. I lived in Baltimore but came down to Buzz every Friday to run my promotion team and handle anything else that needed doing. Working for such an amazing club with a multi-decade run and working for Scott Henry, one of the best promoters and DJs I know, was an incredible learning experience. Travis and I both threw solo events off the heels of Buzz, and Travis was becoming a pretty amazing DJ. Travis moved to LA 5 years ago, went to burning man, and joined Camp Charlie. Travis and I co-hosted the March 2015 Camp Charlie fundraiser at King King with Adam Rowe of Fleetwood Smack. Travis and I have similar tastes in music, so doing a night on the car together was a natural progression. We’re really excited to bring this lineup together on playa. It’s just the right amount of funky and driving beats, we think this night is going to be pretty special.

Charlie - Sarah Travis

How did Wes Smith became involved in Camp Charlie?

Sarah: Wes and I go way back from the DC/Baltimore days. At some point I realized he moved to San Diego and messaged him. I’m pretty sure I asked him if he had been to burning man, and he hadn’t yet. At that point I think as-per-usual I wouldn’t shut up about it and he got really excited. Wes ended up going with us last year and his Tuesday night set on Charlie was for lack of a better word, EPIC. There were people holding their heads in confusion, they couldn’t figure out how those breaks just kept coming. Wes proved himself as a valuable member of our work team as well, so we were thrilled he was coming back for 2015.

What led you to Camp Charlie?

Danielle: Wellllllll, I had this obsession with unicorns. Before Charlie was built, the original creator, Ken Feldman (who is now building the 747) ran a Kickstarter campaign. In one day, about 5 people posted it to my Facebook page. So I emailed him the following:

Hello my name is Diva. I think we need to meet.

1) I love unicorns

2) I am a DJ with loads of shameless self promotion skills.

I think I can help you.

After that, we met and literally then talked everyday for the next 6 months while we built Charlie 1.0 in 2011.
Charlie 6

Sarah: The Charlie the Unicorn Art Car of course! Haha, but also the amazing DJ talent we bring each year, and the amazing work ethic of the talented camp organizers and campers. Our camp is built and our Unicorn is improved mostly through the ingenuity and sweat of the amazing people in our camp. We don’t do Sparkle Ponies (they’re pretty but useless) but we DO sparkle

What keeps you coming back year after year?

Danielle: I keep telling myself I am gonna take a year off but then something comes up and I just am saying to go. Once I got a unicorn to ride around on, I pretty much gave up on taking a year off. I feel like it’s not very common that you get complete freedom to do whatever you want on a creative endeavor. I came from a career as a video editor, constantly working with clients. Burning Man and this crazy unicorn, gave me a creative outlet and then the courage and confidence to change my life and my career (now I’m making music and touring as a DJ full-time).

Charlie Danielle

Sarah: The fun, the work, the sense of community. Being part of something greater than yourself and seeing your hard work come to life. This amazing and talented group of people. Being a part of an Art Car, and especially Charlie is just an incredible feeling. Everyone LOVES Charlie. People see him and come running. It just brings a huge smile to my face.  

Charlie 2015 line up

Thank you, Ladies. I look forward to joining you both at Camp Charlie and experiencing all of this first hand. Where can the rest of Burning Man find Charlie?

Camp Charlie is located in the Sunset Trip Village with Tasty Noodles and Dirty Beetles at 8:30 and Ersatz. Nights, Charlie can be found out and about on the open playa, so if you see a really bright unicorn with his head sticking out of Candy Mountain with flames shooting from his horn and some pretty incredible beats being played, you know you’re in the right place.  

Related links: [Juice Recordings: Facebook] [Wes Smith : Unicorn Sightings] [Burning Man]

Location: 8:30 & Esplanade

It’s Wes Smith Yo! Burning Man 2015 Tour @ the Dusty Rhino

Burn baby burn!  Next stop on the clock for the magical buggin’ fugu brought me to Brian Nuggets Cox (aka Nugz, Nuggets and B. Nugz) and our discussion about the fiery one they call Dusty Rhino.

Tell me about the Dusty Rhino camp and art car:

It’s awesome! We keep it low-key at our camp and then when we take out the Rhino we find an art piece to park at or bring it around to different places for variety. Our mission is to show people a good time with consistently great music. It’s usually house and breakbeat with the edgy grungy good stuff (haha no dubstep).

There is fire button to smash on in the DJ booth and driver has a fire button as well. With a 165 gallon propane tank, it’s a large rhino barreling through the desert with a horn that shoots FIRE – there really is nothing like it.

Dusty Rhino 1

Let’s talk about the Wes Smith connection/show with the Rhino:

Sure- we try to get producers, friends and people who are crushing it in breaks to bring out a well-rounded roster. We saw Eric Riggsbee (of San Fransisco’s “Faultline”) brought him out here and we hit Wes up on Facebook. I handle bookings and am also on the Dusty Board of Directors. There are 3 guys doing the music programming and we all came to a general consensus. He is playing 3-430am Tuesday/Wed morning and we have confirmed DJ DAN same night.

Wes tour photo

Tell me how you first made it to Burning Man:

I was in Boulder at the time and I heard about it in 96-97 from a college friend. Eventually I made the decision to move and I had just moved to to San Fran with a only a trailer in tow. in 2004, I was sleeping on the floor at a friend’s house and they were going to the burn and they invited me to go. I went down to Haight Street in San Fransisco and actually purchased a physical ticket. We went, had a good time and loved it so much I haven’t missed it since.

What led you to a Dusty Rhino?

In 2009 the Dusty Rhino asked me to be a part of the camp. It was one of my fave art carts out there … I loved the clean lines, simple, white stretch fabric and halogen lights.  Since then I have become one of their main DJ’s as well as the sound guy responsible for maintaining and breaking down the art car.

Brian has been a DJ for 20 years and he plays house, breaks and drum&bass – this is the mix I have been grindin on this week while writing up this article , check out his soundcloud for this and other genres for a sneak peak to your burn. If you are not going- go outside grab some dust and bugs, grab a neighbor to dance with, hit play and make believe!

 

What keeps you coming back year after year?

The Dusty Rhino is  there for the community first and foremost. We don’t discriminate, we want as many people to have an experience on the there to share good music and art.

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We do 3-4 fundraisers a year to get it out there. We did pride this year the picture below includes 4 of our resident DJs; myself (NUGZ), and Clarkie, Alvaro Bravo and DJ Dane.

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Where can we find you when you are not barreling through the desert shooting fire?

Location 10 & I – Look for the 30 feet LED giraffe!

Brian, thank you so much for the sit down, for sharing your music with us and for all that Dusty Rhino does during the year and at the burn. We will be looking for the Rhino on the horizon to come get our dusty hugs and boogie to great music. Check out Wes Smith mashing fire and que buttons 3-430am Wednesday morning on the Dusty Rhino art car.

Related links:

It’s Wes Smith Yo! Burning Man 2015 Tour @ Dusty Poon Saloon

Wes Smith kicks off his broken beat tour of Burning Man 2015 @ the Dusty Poon Saloon.  When Chuck Wheeler (of the Dusty Poon Saloon) and and I finally caught up, he was just getting back from fishing with a big yellowtail catch in his cooler for dinner.  With Burning Man coming up soon, the buzz and excitement was clear in his voice.  We sat down and talked about Burning Man, Wes Smith and what makes a Dusty Poon.

Dusty Poon Saloon

Tell me about your history with Burning Man camp “Dusty Poon Saloon”?

I’m one of the co-creators of the camp. Myself and 4 other close friends started it back in 2010 and this will be my 5th burn since 2009.  The Saloon has been growing and growing each year, we started with 20 camp mates and today we have 55 people with us.
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 What is the camp about?
Our theme camp is definitely for the people of Burning Man and the community.  We are a bunch of givers and have a multitude of things to offer.  In addition to having some of the best cocktails on the playa, we set up an old Western photo booth and provide 1000s of costumes with different backdrops.  Back in 2009 we were brought car buffers to the playa since then we have been buffing people’s buns for them to combat what the desert does to them.  We also do a lot of theatricals including wild western showdowns, we do communal burn pits and throughout the week we throw parties.  We bring a large sound system and equipment to the playa so our camp is one for people to come in to enjoy, dance, have a great time and stay awhile.

Dusty Poon Saloon

How did you meet Wes Smith and decide to include him for Poon shenanigans?

We went to Electric Poncho in Mexico and Dusty Poon put together a renegade camp on the side of a cliff that overlooked the whole canyon. We brought down an bunch of booze and put up our saloon doors and threw a RAGER all night with DJs playing.  My buddy Ben met Wes and they hung out together and got along well.  I also ran into him at Kava Lounge (San Diego) at a event and we hit it off there.  He showed a lot of interest and we consider our camp a breakbeat camp. His style really fits with what we like so we invited him to play this year at the saloon.

Wes Smith

Tell me about the events you are throwing at the Dusty Poon:

We have 2-3 parties throughout the week and our big blow out feature party with Wes is called “The Poon at Noon” on Wednesday from noon-6pm.  We are going to have a giant cactus that blows fire out of the top and this year we are going to try to do a ghost pepper Russian roulette wheel…spin the wheel with one ghost pepper shot.  Anyone who wants to step up though we have ghost pepper bourbon or vodka all week. It gives you a euphoric feeling once you get past your mouth burning but then the endorphins come out that gives you a natural high.

Well I can’t wait to meet you on the playa and get down and dusty at the Poon, Chuck!  

Come join the crew all week and especially Wednesday for the Poon at Noon and Thursday at 9pm for Chuck’s birthday. Happy Birthday!

Playa placement: 4th & C

Related Links:

[Dusty Poon Saloon : Website] [Dusty Poon Saloon : Facebook] [Juice Recordings: Website] [Burning Man : Facebook Event]

It’s Wes Smith Yo! Tour Swims Upstream to Lay Down Beats for Electric Love Festival [Canada]

Wes Smith continues his magic Fugu journey this time by swimming upstream from the current to lay down his beats at Electric Love. I met up with Joshua Allen, owner of Regime Entertainment, to see how the passion translates to the love.

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Tell me about Electric Love:

This is the first year for Electric Love, but I have been doing promotions and throwing shows for 15 years now. I went to a show in 2001 and loved it so much that I decided to DJ, however, once I bought the equipment and tried it out I thought I also want to throw parties/shows. Currently,  I Dj with my girl Danielle Wilson. We are Neon Gypsy and Average Citizen and we become Average Gypsy. You can hear us at Electric Love!

How did you get your start throwing shows?

 We used to throw a one night show called Summer Break 7 years ago but unfortunately we lost the land where we threw it and had to go on a hiatus.  It had a really diverse lineup one year it boasted Snoop Dogg and Freestylers on the same bill. This is the first year we were able to acquire land again that fit for us and a show of this scale. We wanted to bring back the one night all night party again. It doesn’t happen out here that much anymore, most raves/festivals are a huge time and financial commitment. This being one night is a smaller commitment and importantly a very short distance from most Vancouver and if you are in the valley it’s in your backyard.
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Tell me about the festival/show:

We are bringing back the one night banger with 18 hours of sound. It’s on a river at the base of the mountains in a beautiful spot and there is huge campsite if you want to camp. We have 4 stages with themes-  like the main stage (aka the Love Shack) decorated in an Arabian nights theme with Cats Eye doing the lighting –  it’s going to be sexy just like a Love Shack. The Zen Den will have black lights with themed paintings and a dreamy PsyTrance/Trance feel, the Arena stage is hip hop and The Nest is going to be a huge nest for the DJ’s to play in, it’s exciting. My team all are in charge of the stages and have worked hard to bring something for all.

Electric Love

What size show is Electric Love?

We are capping sales at 3000 so it’s not too crowded but we plan to grow in the future… for the next 10 years plus. We have Vancouver’s best graffiti artist coming in for an art installation and last month we held a DJ contest that resulted in two winners. We will see Carl Crawford opening the main stage and Henry Pope (LA) opening for headliner at the Nest Stage. It gives Dj’s that are actually really good a chance to be heard, especially those that may not know anyone in the area and despite being really talented are not able to be booked.

Thank you for your time, Josh, we appreciate your time for the magic Fugu tour and wish you the best of luck at Electric Love. 

 Thank you, I am really looking forward to Wes’s set. His album is awesome, we are all really excited. Gates open at 2pm – see you all there!

Related links:

[Facebook: Event Page] [Electric Love: Ticket Link] [Electric Love: Website] [Juice Recordings : Website]] [Facebook: Average Gypsy]