This week we have Blu 9 in the Artist Spotlight. She recently played Transmit Tuesdays at Spybar Chicago and she was the opening act for Jerome Baker in Milwaukee, WI. Check out the interview we did with Blu 9 and be sure to check out her music below.
How did you first begin DJing/Producing?
I wanted to DJ when I was so young because every guy in the neighborhood wanted to be a DJ and of course I wanted to be like my older cousins. My cousin Marty got his first turntables (short lived) to get the girls and I remember him saying “Come on kid watch”. It wasn’t until my other cousin Mario (Mariomakeudance) DJ’d our cousin’s 16th birthday party (I was 8) that I became hooked instantly. Once I got older, I started to follow him around. Well that turned into being underage going into the clubs just so I can watch and dance. I remember him finally teaching me when I was in my late teens and he was like “Here if you’re going to learn, you’re going to learn with freestyle!” All I can say is, wow boots in dryer sound. It was so hard but I got through it. I just loved music so much and I loved to play. Now, I have one of the best guys as a boss. Julian Jumpin Perez is overseas us for our weekly residency at Rivers Casino. Right I am still in the infancy, learning stages of producing. I love creating tracks and learning how to put it all together. Carmen Fiorentino and Lary Saladin have been a huge help in starting to help me create what is in my head. However still, one of the best teachers is Amy Unland. Besides being an amazing friend, she has a way to help me understand and break down each step and teaches me step by step how to produce a track.
Who is your biggest influence(s)?
I have so many since as I seem to grow, so does who I start to focus on. Currently I really am paying attention to Metodi Hristov. I would love to his brain for one day. He is by far one of my favorite DJ’s and producers right now. His sets are always on point, smooth in their transitions and his overall ear for tracks is impeccable. And of course, Eric Prydz. His sound and being able to stand back and watch him live was just inspiring. Few artists can give you goosebumps like Eric Prydz. With just a few notes, he taps into your deepest emotions. Whether it’s the warm and fuzzy of “Call on Me” or release “Liberate,” the emotional impact of his music never fades. Prydz refuses to follow the typical build and drop formula, which can confuse new ravers, but his technical approach has its advantages. He builds tension to a maximum and releases it into complete euphoria with Generate being a new favorite.
What’s your favorite record of all time?
Something I have near and dear. Claro Intelectos: Neurofibro. The song in particular off that album: Peace of Mind
What was your favorite party of all time that you have played?
Oh this is easy. Hands down playing at Spybar for the first time for Amy Unlands Girl Tech night. It was the Dirty Dish girls and myself and it was the first one. One of the best, fun and amazing nights I ever had. And then Nick Jannite’s Transmit Tuesdays is a up there as well. So many to choose and so much more memories to be made.
Who do you want to collaborate with in the future?
Well definitely Stefano Noferini Eric Prydz, Metodi Hristov, ANNA, Nina Kraviz, and well the list would continue for days…
What’s the most embarrassing thing thats happened to you at a show?
Ugh really? On top of getting electrocuted at one show, it would have to be when I pressed the wrong the button and it stopped. Pulled a just kidding and started it back up. Well I know some don’t hear it, but I know when I’ve made a mistake and when there are times that I can’t get into a set.
What do you like to do when you’re not working on music/DJing?
This is where you can chuckle. I am a Pediatric Occupational Therapist. So I work with special needs kids all day long and DJ by night. I work with some amazing kids and being able to teach them music, especially my autistic students, has been nothing short of inspiring. Honestly, being able to see their faces when they find a sound they vibe with is just so awesome to watch. Plus I take care of my pre-teen daughter is another job. But as relaxing and not music related, I draw a ton as well as play sports, soccer in particular.
What is your opinion on the current EDM scene?
Definitely a loaded question. The term “EDM” itself is an umbrella term for dance, house and trance music, among other micro-genres. However, when someone says EDM, people automatically think mainstream. Electronic dance music (EDM) culture is stigmatized by substance abuse and escapism. The festivals around which it is centered are less focused on specific DJs than the experience of the festivals themselves. It’s hard because I don’t associate with the term EDM. When people ask or say you play EDM well yeah I play electronic dance music, but I play a specific genre which is typically techno and tech house. Insert strange look of someone that has no idea of the sub genres.
What do you think will be the next big thing in EDM?
Well this one is so hard, just because I pay attention to what is happening in the techno, underground house world. I could care less on what was played at 6:17 on Kiss FM. But just like any genre, things can get played out, sounds can be and are overdone. I pay more attention to the artists that evolve with the times and try to put a twist on something instead of recycling. Which is extremely hard. So in all, I have no idea who will be the next big thing.
What do you think about all these “frauds” in the EDM scene using ghost producers, buying likes and purchasing their own tracks on Beatport?
To that, I say goodbye and no respect for you. I see every day the hustle, the work, the heart, and let me say it blood, sweat and lots and lots of tears that go into a track or set, that things like that mentioned in the question make me so irritated. If you put the work in, patience and learn your craft you’ll go far. As well as be prepared to take the criticisms, correct mistakes and know the hurt that not everyone likes that style of music. However, I will say this. I by any means don’t like everything. Some things make my “ears bleed” sometimes. But just because I don’t like it, doesn’t mean the guy standing next doesn’t like. I may not like something, however I have an appreciation of it for what it is.
Is there any upcoming releases/shows we should keep an eye out for?
There is always my weekly residency at Rivers Casino-Lotus on Saturdays with the Jumpin Events crew.