The Discos of Tron Release by Justin Johnson (Remixes by Wes Smith, discObeta, Fire-Beat and DJ Loryn)

"The Discos of Tron" is the new release by Justin Johnson (with remixes by Wes Smith, discObeta, Fire-Beat and DJ Loryn). I sat down with the owner of the distributor label Barely Legal Records, Justin Johnson, to see what the heck a Disco of Tron was anyway and what led him up to this release.

Tell me a little background on Barely Legal Records:

I started in late 1990’s working at Satellite Records in NYC.  I had always played all styles but I was known for breaks and needed an outlet to put my music out.  I had a good resell perspective, knew many contacts and had good info on how it all worked, so I brought my skills to the table and my Dad funded the 1st two releases on vinyl.

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How do you pick your label artists? 

The thought behind all of them is to put out my own music but also for friends of mine in a casual low-key way. We are not trying to be a big label, I enjoy doing my own thing by supporting the music of friends and family as well as some artists where we have built up good relationships. If I get a demo from someone I don’t know well then I might have someone I know do a remix and package the whole thing.

What is a Disco of Tron?

Part of it came from when the second Tron movie came out and Daft Punk was djing in the club reminded me of the old stand up game from the 80's... The Discs of Tron. It was a nod to something I loved as a kid growing up - contemporary but with an old school flavor. You can hear that crunchy hip hop inspired breaks on the discObeta version you can hear the East Coast similarities that you would hear back at Limelight back in the day. Wes Fire-Beat and DJ Loren provided completely different flavors and spins with their contributions to the release.

discos of Tron

How did you choose Wes Smith for his remix contribution?

Wes and I knew of each other being involved in breaks on the East Coast and both living in NYC. For me it was awesome to see someone from back in the day holding it down and becoming successful. It’s on a whole other amazing level, I couldn’t be happier for him. He played one of our Faultline parties (actually the same one you and I played with DJ 138) and we started to build a friendship at that point. He played another Faultline event recently and from there we started talking about a remix option for BLR. It’s hard to get the artists involved after they have been paid, Wes is adding additional value to his product, which is something artists should learn from. I was really excited when you contacted me because I knew that another dimension to the release would be coming in the future.

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Any advice to producers out there wanting to submit to labels? Yours or others?

Spend a lot of time making your track sound as good as you possibly can in your chosen DAW. Whatever your friends tell you - don’t listen to them unless they have at least a somewhat professional perspective. It's because no matter what you make they will be positive because they love you and want to give positive feedback. The reality is that there is SO much noise (literally thousands of releases every week) you really have to figure a way to stand out musically. Not just key changes, but also how good the whole package is and it has got to sound original - it’s not easy. Also, no one is really making money producing tracks so don’t put a down payment on the mansion on your first release. Add value to your production skills by realizing that as an artist you are in the public eye. Basic social media maintenance shows you are active and that you care. Unless you are insanely talented and you do none of that, no one will know about you. Find an artist you respect and admire, follow their model and adjust it with your own voice and have it come from your heart. What works for them?
Ask yourself: What is it you think you have done to make you deserve the attention out of the 1000’s of tracks that are put out each day/week/month? Justin_Johnson_washed_out

You are living a lifetime of passion for music, are there any other words you want to say to all the music lovers and breakers out there?

Yes! Be kind to animals and be funky as fuck people! Those who truly love breaks need to continue to get the word out and preach the breakbeat gospel. It's a genre that ebbs and flows in popularity but it is well back on the rise, which is great to see. I would like to see it maintain a certain plateau and it is  up to all of us involved whatever level to bring it to the masses. If you are a dancer tell your friends about it... share a link, drag a friend out, don't assume they won't like it. Same for DJs, producers, everyone whatever your level/involvement. Start a monthly - do something! Back when we started "Faultline" [breakbeat monthly with DJ 138 and Eric Riggsbee] we knew there were fans out there and we were right the fans do exist. You just have to hustle and find them!

Also we just finished up our 2nd installation of "Foundation", [drum & bass and breaks monthly we do with the Dystopia crew] with Submorphics. We are building a following in broken beats on all levels.  It's a small venue with good sound and an indoor/outdoor space with breakbeats under the stars. The food is actually really good and the staff is great...we couldn't ask for more.

This coming Saturday (Sept. 19, 2015) we're doing a special SF edition of Faultline at Underground SF (the old Top on lower Haight) with guests ShOOey and BENN BA$$. No cover. 21+. 9pm-2am.

Rob Analyze of Jamvana hits Wiggle 9/19 with Wes Smith, Omega Squad and SpeakerGhost

BOOM! Thought it was over after Burning Man? Nope, Agent 137 continues her missions to talk with industry leaders to gather important intelligence. This intelligence is meant to bridge Wes Smith's audiences together with knowledge of what other promoters/labels/artists are doing in other parts of the country and around the world. This particular mission was to speak with Robert E. Leigh (Rob Analyze), owner of Jamvana, to hear what he is doing with this project and hype up this weekend's Wiggle in San Diego: Wiggle - Analyze

Who is Rob Analyze?

analyze

What is Jamvana?

Jamvana started as a music retailer in 2008 and in 2011 we began to focus on becoming a content platform to deliver content to music retailers. We have about 400 labels and 1000 artists that we do artist & label branding focus. Our focus is on marketing in motion and revenue and we are always going toward the cutting edge of what is next.

What is next for Jamvana?

We are focusing on development, creating apps, VST Plugins and also becoming a leader in the sample pack world.

jamvana3Tell me why streaming is the future:

It's changed from 10 years ago. You used to be able to throw a tune on Beatport and sell 1000 units. It's become over saturated with producers and it's just not as easy to find good music as it was before plus attention spans are shorter so the life of a tune is much shorter. Also apps like Spotify and being able to DJ off a stream has changed the game. We want to push good artists on a quality stream to both monetize for us/them and give the music consumer a better product. We can also then move to app growth, license it out and then offer quality customer support.

Jamvana

 

How did Jamvana and Wes start working together?

We love what Wes is doing and want to help him succeed. Juice Recordings is one of our first labels and Wes as an artist that is on point with every aspect of his game right now. Juice is doing everything a label should be doing and more . It's hard for an artist to accomplish what he has (and continues to do so) and it's what we look for as a company and ally in the industry.

Robert is the owner of Jamvana and is also known as the artist Rob Analyze. He has been a part of the scene for years and is heavily involved in several projects in addition to Jamvana. You can check him out at Wiggle this weekend in San Diego and if you are not in the area, click below and check out his Soundcloud.

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Thank you for your input, Robert- we appreciate what you do for our scene to make it better and look forward to what you bring to is in the future.

Related links:  [Wiggle Facebook Event] [Soundcloud: Rob Analyze]  [Juice Recordings Website: Free Stuff] [Jamvana Website] [Facebook: Jamvana]

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.

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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!

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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.

crew_n_DavidChui_Rhino_Pride2015

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.
 Dusty Poon Saloon 2
 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! Burning Man 2015 Tour @ Slut Garden

Dot Diggler is next for my "It's Wes Smith at Burning Man Yo!" interviews.  Dot resides at Slut Garden during his stay in the dust. This is a camp that I remember well from last year - it's colorful, fun and the music was always on point. Getting to see Wes play up on that stage is going to be a sight to see with the crowd dressed up in their space wear. BOOM!

Check out the video by clicking this picture!

Slut Garden is certainly an interesting name - tell me about Slut Garden and what you all are about:

We are the ultimate party on the playa and are a real interactive camp. Whether it is the shadow boxes, platforms, The Wet Spot (bar), dome or clothing exchange (Slutty Seconds). We have people who go out in the crowd to recruit girls to dance in the shadow boxes and we aim to never have them empty of sexy silhouettes dancing.

What’s your role for Slut Garden?

I’m in charge of staging build scaffolding, setting up the lighting and am a main residency DJ. I am based out of Seattle but the founding members and campers are mainly from Portland and Montana.

That’s great - how did you get involved with Slut Garden?

This is my second year with Slut Garden, after my first burn I played a hip hop set with my best friend Matt (Pressha) for a hip hop happy hour. Slut Garden was having some sound issues so I jumped under the sound booth and fixed what was wrong. They were appreciative and they asked me to come back to play. I started with an empty crowd and once I was done there was a huge crowd. I was offered to play a fundraiser in Seattle and it just exploded from there. I don't rep a crew or a label when it comes to Slut Garden...so I promo the heck outta it and get the word out about them.

SlutGarden 1

Speaking of promo - tell me about your biggest music events/parties:

Wednesday: Sluts In Space when Wes Smith is playing, it’s an astronaut/space themed event.

Thursday: Booty Wonderland with Deekline and Dot Diggler ++

Friday: Satan’s Schoolgirls that DJ Dan hosting with Donald Glaude ++

Slut Garden 3

You were the one that booked Wes. How do you know about Wes Smith all the way in Seattle?

I asked Wes if he would be down to play a set - he is one of my favorite producers. I found his tracks awhile back and the tracks went off really well at the burn one of my good friends Justin (Blacklist) Alson also plays a lot of his tunes out as well.

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Any advice to aspiring DJs/producers out there going to Burning Man?

It’s good to make connections in this industry it is very hard if you do not. Everyone is a dj/producers/etc so you really have to set yourself apart from the others.

Tell me why you do all of this and keep coming back to Burning Man:

One of the reasons why I love Burning Man is because breaks are reigning supreme (parallel with house). I have been a breaks DJ for 15 years ever since I heard Icey's Essential Mix and then started getting into Baby Anne, Fixx, Volume, Huda Hudia, Deeklline, Plump DJs, Freestylers and Stanton Warriors. I have been blessed to play with most of them except Deekline and that comes true this year.

Slut Garden 2

Also, I have never met such a hard-working group so focused on their goal. It's a camp full of Alphas and surprisingly-  it really works. The founder of Slut Garden, Brad, is the shit. He is a superb leader of people. It's why the camp has become as awesome as it is and it keeps getting bigger and bigger each year.

Check out the Dot Diggler mix I have been bumpin'in my speakers this week:

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This year’s Burn is going to be interesting and I can’t wait to meet you and see/hear all the awesome on that beautiful stage surrounded by those shadow box dancers - thank you sir, see you in the dust!

SLUT GARDEN

LOCATION: 9:15 & E

Related links:

[Slut Garden : Website] [Slut Garden : Facebook] [Juice Recordings: Website] [Wes Smith: Facebook] [Dot Diggler: Facebook]

Wes Smith's Cali Cuts EP Out Now on Punks Music | Interview with Label Manager Olly Gee

Another agent mission completed for the ItsWesSmithYo! interviews. This time I floated over to the UK for a chat with Olly Gee, label manager at Punks Music. Punks released Wes Smith's Cali Cuts EP August 3rd and trust -  they are all HEATERS.

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Tell me about your role at Punks:

I am the Punks label manager. I work with our artists, distributors, A&R people and designers to improve and promote our product. I also handle most of the day to day running of the label. Mark and Dom (Stanton Warriors) are very hands on with Punks so I essentially act as a filter between all of the contributors and them. Everything is signed off by the Stantons so I condense all the information into manageable portions for them to go through. We meet as often as possible to talk about how things are going and to make decisions on what is going to work for the label going forward.

Give us a little history on Punks and what direction you are heading:

The label has been around a long time, well over a decade. It has always been a slow burner though as the Stantons have released most of their music on bigger/major labels. Mark and Dom relaunched Punks early last year and it kinda blew up from the word go, they have built a great legacy musically and command a huge social media following with which helps us a lot. All the magazines and blogs have been really supportive of what we are doing and the Punks artists have really come through with great material for us. This has allowed Punks to grow quite quickly, everything is coming together as we hoped it would.

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Wes Smith/Punks, how did you choose Wes? Do you have a personal favorite on the EP?: 

Actually, Wes was picked up by Mark And Dom before I came on board. I know they are well sold on Wes musically. Wes carries himself well in the industry, he promotes himself very well as a brand and what he does really fits with Punks.

My personal favourite on the EP is "The Tribe”. I’ve been playing it out for a while now, those metallic sounding perc loops are on point. We’ve also been playing Techwerk and getting a good response on dance floors. People seem to enjoy the whole EP. The tunes are tried and tested so we know it's going to be a great release.

Wes Cali Cuts

Where have the tracks been featured?

Wes's tunes are a part of the Big Bass Party mix in Australia:

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As well as the Stanton Warriors podcast #38 they did for Triple J in Australia when touring for the Rebel Bass album:

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You mentioned that you had been playing Wes's tunes out. Tell us about you as a producer/dj - who are you as an artist?

I am one-third of the Freerange DJ's from Cornwall (UK). We’ve been DJing together for a lot of years and out 1st release came in 2009.

We all have our separate strengths within the group but we work together really well which is ace. We try not to put too much pressure on each other and things just always seem to work out well for us, its pretty cool like that actually.

We’ve been really lucky in that we have been able to accomplish the majority of our goals when ever we have set them. We try not to take ourselves too seriously but for some reason people keep on booking us. I think its because we like to party….  As long as we are having fun that all that matters to us really. So far so good!

We have some fresh new material finished which will be available in the next few months that we are really excited about. It's definitely the best material to come out of Ave’s studio to date.

Check out Freerange DJ's "Beat Goes On" remix here (free download). That BREAKDOWN WHOA! 

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What's next for Punks?

We’re constantly working on new ways to improve the way that the label runs and the extend the support that we offer to our artists.

We’ve had a great reception from DJs and fans alike from all over the world. Everyone's podcasts/mixes seem to be absolutely crammed with Punks tunes and some people are even having the Punks logo tattooed on themselves which is amazing.

The Stanton Warriors new Rebel Bass album drops soon. It's a fantastic record and the level of hype for it is huge, I think it will be a bit of a game changer. Although Rebel Bass is coming out on Central Station Records its going to bring a lot more eyes and lend a tone of credibility/exposure to what we are doing at Punks.

I think the next logical step will be for us to start throwing some Punks branded parties. Our artists and the Punks brand are definitely strong enough to make a good job of that and It would be great to be able to offer extra entertainment to our supporters whilst pushing the Punks sound out to new audiences.

We have a lot of ideas that we want to launch when the time is right. Right now Punks is enjoying a really nice period of organic growth, it's an exciting time all round really.

Punks

Any final thoughts/words?

We are looking forward to the Wes Smith release, its been in the pipeline for a little while now so we’re happy to get it out there for everyone to enjoy. Early feedback suggests that its going to be a hit!

All of our artists have some awesome new music on its way. Mafia Kiss, Marten Horger, Sly-One, Nixon and Left/Right all have wicked releases coming up in the next few months that we’re all super hyped on.

Punks has a lot of plans that I won’t go into now, but we have really big goals set for the label and artists. Everyone will see a huge push in the next 12 months to get as much progressive new music as possible out there for everyone to enjoy. We are really enthusiastic about the next phase, the wheels are in motion so keep an eye on our media pages for updates!

We here at Juice Recordings appreciate your time and thank you and Punks for keeping the beat go on and on.... 

It's Wes Smith Yo! It's Breaks Yo! Miami

What a perfect show for the next It's Wes Smith Yo tour stop...BreaksYo!  Ground Zero Crew presents Breaks Yo!The Social Lubricant. Breaks Yo - Bebe 2

Wes Smith is a DJ and producer based out of San Diego, CA. He is the Beatport Breaks Best of 2014 #1 Label Boss, #1 Track Producer, and #2 Artist. His floor filling single “Bring Back That Funk” camped out at the Beatport Breaks #1 spot for more than 30 days and nearly 150 days in the top 10.

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With official support from The Crystal Method, Lady Waks and The Armory Podcast, his DJ mixes and music are featured on top podcasts, radio shows and labels. His main floor live sets run the genre game with funk fueled beats, bass and vocals. Wes is also the Juice Recordings label boss, chief sticker bomber and creative force behind The Juice Squad.

[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/playlists/94325392" params="color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false" width="100%" height="200" iframe="true" /]

With support from:

JimiTheGenius (Kuad Recordings / Zone) * Bday Set! [Link]

Bebe (Digital Records) [Link]

Mas Inc (Culture) [Link]

Robotic (Bass Records) [Link]

JROC [Link]

G$Montana (Project Mayhem) [Link]

Related links:

[Facebook l Event] [Facebook l Wes Smith]

 

It's Wes Smith Yo! Trusts Unicorns? Next stop - Santa Monica, CA

The magic fugu tour keep breathing new life to the US and beyond packing venues to the gills and rocking the electric funkalicious. This time I catch up with Dave Loomstein, aka Dave Loomer, of The Cruz Coalition. Cruz Coalition (in conjunction with Camp Charlie) is present the 4th annual “In Unicorns We Trust”. This is a fundraiser for a famous Burning Man camp, Camp Charlie, this Friday in Santa Monica. Loomer - In Unicorns We Trust

Tell me of your first Burning Man experience:

A friend convinced me to go and I had an amazing life changing experience. I was a music aficionado forever but I was not into making music at the time other than mix tapes. When i returned from my first burn I started DJing and producing music immediately and have been doing it ever since. This year’s Burning Man will be my tenth in a row.

Loomer- picture

Camp Charlie is a theme camp and art car at Burning Man. Tell me a short history of this camp:

Camp Charlie was developed around Charlie the unicorn cartoon. The art car is a mainstay, it’s a huge car with great sound. It’s super fun and it is both a labor of love and of patience.

Loomer- Unicorn day

How did you become a Camp Charlie camper & enthusiast aka a Unicorn?

Charlie is my third camp so far. You could call me “polycamperous" with another camp called Nutz. It started as a no expectations journey, but it became about music so I go to the camp I am most closely aligned with musically. Also to get different flavors of the burn you truly need exposure to different people and experiences.

Loomer- Unicorn Night

Tell us about the Cruz Coalition:

This is my company and we manage events including local event production located in Santa Monica.

Loomer - cruz.logo.font

You just got back from EDC. Tell us what you did there:

Cruz Coalition has worked the last seven EDC’s in Los Angeles and five in Vegas doing the production aspect for EDC. From acquiring the entertainers to building the stages. It can be anything from building, staffing, biz management, booking, schedules, artist relations, etc.

Let’s talk about “In Unicorns We Trust”, the event this weekend:

This is Cruz Coalition’s 3rd co production of “IUWT” with Camp Charlie and we are really excited- the event is in an underground art and event space that only has rare and special events there. You have to work a lot of connections and relationships to even be able to throw an event here. The whole lineup is made up of a combination of resident djs, local headliners and guest djs. You will see that Wes is coming into his own as a headliner and we are really happy to see him join us for this one. He has been such an advocate for Camp Charlie since his first time last year.

We add a LOT of variety to offer the people a lot of possibilities throughout the night. It’s a really sweet event that brings a lot of community energy… we as unicorns bring a lot of energy and thunder to everything we do, it’s going to be one to remember.

Loomer- unicorn so hard

Any advice to me as a first time Unicorn this year at Burning Man?

Get there early and see it grow, a complete metamorphosis. It’s a pleasure to be a part of it and the community keeps expanding. Get into the spirit, enjoy and participate. It’s about the experience and while you are part of an ensemble, you still have to go and make your own great experience. When it’s like that - you need to be about you. If it’s not an experience you cannot immerse yourself 100% with then it’s not your experience.

Loomer- logo

Peace Out...

Thank you, Dave. We really appreciate your time and wish you the best of luck with the event. You can catch Dave aka DJ Loomer at "In Unicorns We Trust" and for those of you outside of Cali, here is his Stanton Warriors Rebel Bass Tour mix for your listening pleasure.

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Related links:

 [Facebook l Cruz Coalition] [Website l Juice Recordings] [Facebook l Event Page]

Its Wes Smith Yo! Saddling Up with the Space Cowboys for the latest RIPEcast!

In anticipation of the newest Wes Smith endeavor, I sat down with the curator of the famous RIPEcast, Keith Deckard (aka DJ Deckard) to talk about the show.  He is a member of the Space Cowboys, a San Francisco based Burner music and art collective.

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Tell me who or what are the Space Cowboys?

There is a really long history surrounding the Space Cowboys, I have been a part of them for 6 years now.  It is a collective in the true sense of the word that was born from a fusion of two different Burning Man camps. They found themselves at Burning Man in a "coming together" moment. They had the same temperament and needs/skills/equipment that complimented each other ... and the camp was born. Today we have about 17 active members, builders, sound guys, maintenance, etc and each has their expertise that is used during the year for our activities, shows and at Burning Man itself.

Space Cowboys

Explain to those who  have not been to Burning Man what the Space Cowboys do at the burn:

At Burning Man we have MOG which is an art car and last year we built a saloon. The MOG is a mobile party that is always on the move. We would rather be mobile and a bit harder to find than have a huge party that people plan on going to during the week. It’s part of the experience, you have to make an effort to find us. It’s almost a metaphor for breakbeat, a little off the beaten path. We want the people who love it to come find the art car or if you stumble upon it and have a great time listening to it and we gain new people, that’s great too.

I know we ended up in deep playa one early morning at the MOG. We were the first ones there but a whole bunch of people showed up and we danced for hours. That was a great Burning Man memory for me, thank you Space Cowboys! 

space-cowboys-unimog-burning-man

Who are the Space Cowboys outside of the burn?

Different parties we throw thoughout the year have different purposes. From specific Burning Man fundraisers to smaller shows that give our vibe and music but are most likely less of a production. We are a not-for-profit and we really try to back art projects.  For example we backed the Bay Bridge lights project [https://thebaylights.org] where a local artist Leo Villareal did a LED light installation on San Fran’s Bay Bridge. We also throw Ghost Ship which is a Burning Man type party but it also supports local artists. As we have been more successful with each show, we are able hire people/artists from other camps like Dusty Rhino (for example) and they are able to gain something from being there, helping their camp for the year.

What is RIPEcast?

Zach Moore championed the RIPEcast effort and spent a lot of time and effort getting RIPEcast to where it is now. It was born out of love and belief in the music from those with a love of breakbeats and ability to promote what we love. The sound has evolved a bit more from exclusively breakbeat, we play more house styles now as well. I’m even hearing more of that organic electro sound that we were hearing 6-7 years ago. We talked about it as a collective to widen the range of what is played and it has worked out really well- I feel like we have something pretty rare. Now Zach does the Armory Podcast exclusively and all of us involved in RIPEcast are figuring out how to get the word out on social media and in our communities.

Space Cowboy RIPE_web_HEADER_1b

How do you choose your artists/mixes for RIPEcast?

We are trying to record as many live sets as possible that we do during the year like our happy hours on Pier 70. Josh (8_Ball), a camp elder/leader, manages 1 mix a month plus a mixture of Space Cowboys DJS live, video or pre set mixes as well as other guest DJs. I am trying to curate producers/DJs that I follow and like to get more content. Even though I have a 9-5 job and limited time - it’s like being a radio programmer, I get to bring music I am really passionate about to people who really like it and what we do as well.

How did the July 24th San Francisco "The Space Cowboys present ShOONanigans with Wes Smith" show come about?

This is a really good example of how we have different people who take on different parts and roles. Jenny (ShOOey) has a relationship with Jeff (GM) of Public Works in San Francisco and she is a huge fan of Wes Smith. It’s her birthday and she was able to choose who she wanted to play. It’s very organic, we have the infrastructure and level of expertise/knowledge to propose a plan and throw a great, successful party. We also have a good track record so it feels good when you have everyone's backing going into it.  [Facebook Event]

How can we hear the RIPEcast?

It is available on Mixcloud, Soundcloud and for download on iTunes. Wes Smith's RIPEcast drops today at 11am pst.

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Keith is a Space Cowboy and is known as DJ Deckard. His “Definition of Chill” RIPEcasts are available on the links below (I’m listening to one now and it’s great). I thank him for his time with me today, it was a awesome and interesting conversation that helps bridge the gap for me on music and what others are doing across the country for the love of music. I look forward finding the Space Cowboys and  dancing with you all in Black Rock City in 2015. Giddy up!

Related Links:

[Wes Smith Website] [Space Cowboys Website] [DJ Deckard | Facebook] [DJ Zach Moore | Facebook] [DJ ShOOey | Facebook]

Artist Spotlight: Omega Squad

Who is Omega Squad and how did you became the "Squad" -  Skandar Rassas and myself (Brian Millar) make up Omega Squad, we met 11 years ago at a house party and became best friends instantly.

Skandar: Brian was into UK hard house back in 2008 when the digital format was coming up. Since he had built a reputation and played guitar in hardcore bands it was hard for him to abandon his brand and the reputation he'd build in the hard house scene where he was already producing hit tracks with Jon Bishop. We started playing parties together, each of us playing our own styles, and after many years of playing & producing events we finally decided to come together as a duo. Now we have spent 3 years as Omega Squad and each of us brings something different to the table. We manage to go all around the world of breakbeat and it works really well.

Omega Squad

How do you choose your DJ sets?

What works for us is variety and a flow that makes sense to the dance floor. In every genre you have the heads but then there are people who are just out to have a good time and not think too much about it. We play for people who don’t necessarily know exactly what they are listening to, but know they really like it. We range from booty to techy to electro to trancey anthems, which has even worked well in Mexico at an all techno party. Omega Squad logo

Tell me a little about Wiggle - your bimonthly residency:

We are trying to concentrate on a local event and to bring in quality talent. The focus is exclusively breakbeat which is unique to San Diego. Wes Smith (of Juice Recordings) and myself have lunch every week and discuss the logistics. We have each had a series of events and successes so we all bring experience to the table. We usually have 4 acts per night starting with someone local that deserves the chance and then add guests from out-of-town with Omega Squad and Wes Smith as the residents.  We market to all the different scenes and when it is show time, both the crowd and ourselves get loose and have a good time.

Wiggle

Tell me about the production side of Omega Squad:

Brian is the writer and Skandar sits in on sessions and gives input, then we perform together as a team. We have had 5 releases on both Diablo Loco & Juice Recordings, all of them making it into the Beatport Breaks top 100, and our first original track “Shake" went all the way to #16.

What about breaks production from the production side?

As the entire EDM scene has come up Breaks has gained a much wider audience along with it. The scene is not going anywhere anytime soon, people will always want to go out and have a good a time.

Tell me about your newest release:

“Get It On Up” on Juice Recordings - it’s the one Keith Mackenzie and Wes Smith both played when we were in Miami for Winter Music Conference. We also have releases coming out in July and August.

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Details below:

Get It On Up, the third single from San Diego’s Omega Squad is available now at Beatport!

“The third effort from Omega Squad on the Juice imprint is a fast forward trip into the San Diego based duo’s sonic versatility. “Get It On Up” leads off the breakbeat assault with a booty shaking 808 and set of twisted trap influenced synths. Wes Smith keeps the vibe smooth like butter hitting pancakes after a trip through the Mexican desert with his Short Stack Rebump. Cover art elements delivered with care by Sumo Fish.”

Thank you, Omega Squad - it was a pleasure. Good luck on your latest releases, I look forward to hearing and playing them on a dance floor nearest me soon.  All the <3!

-Agent137ReportingForJuiceRecordings

It's Wes Smith Yo! Album Tour Continues to Honolulu, Hawaii

This stop on the magic fugu tour, Wes Smith swims ashore to the islands of Hawaii while tripping the light fantastic. Agent 137 finds herself swimming along with Bret Shoopman to discuss the upcoming Honolulu show. Event_Hawaii_2015-06-13_IG, Wes Smith- Hawaii, #JuiceRecordings, #TheJuiceSquad, #StickyBumps,  #ItsWesSmithYo, #WesSmith,   #EDM, #UDM, #Bass, #Funk, #Breaks, #Breakbeat, #Garage, #2step, #UK, #FutureGarage,  #IWSYTour, #MagicFugu, #BringBackThatFunk, #Califunkya, #CampCharlie,

What is the music scene in Honolulu about? 

Most parties in the area have been mainly a house scene, deep and bassline house. I came to Shaun Coon (aka Coondog), someone who is doing a lot of parties in the area (including a monthly boat party) with the idea for an all breaks show. I looked to him because he has helped to change the scene and build it up in the area. He agreed and now we are collaborating with Green Minded, Aloha State Breaks, Stay Up Movement and Sub.Mission Hawaii for the show. This is the first all breaks party that has been thrown in a long time in Honolulu. We are really excited to be able to bring breaks back in this way with the right people/artists.

Juice Hawaii

So it's your first breaks party in a long time, why Wes Smith to represent it?

I knew of Wes Smith over the last two years from Soundcloud and Beatport and was really digging his vibe/music. I would often play his tunes on my Monday weekly radio show on Preserving the Pitch. Eventually I friend requested him and we started chatting online, fortunately he has friends and/or family on the island so we were able to book him here. It's hard to get artists out due to the flight cost alone - so being able to get Wes was great bonus for this party.

Juice Head Hawaii

Tell me about you as an artist:

I (Silva Sativa) began in the scene back in Kansas but in 2004/2005 I was introduced to breaks and I fell in love with the genre- Deekline, Ed Solo, Wizard, and Stanton Warriors were huge influences on me at the time. I moved to Colorado and became an even bigger fan. Ever since I have been trying to find new artists and curate my collection. I go beyond the Beatport top 100 so to speak and try to find some real gems from up and coming artists.

Who are some of the new up and coming artists that you think produce some of those gems? 

Sure, besides Wes Smith some of the people I really enjoy are:

1) Omega Squad

2) Noemi & Yera_W

3) DoubleFacez 

4) DubaxFace 

5) Bombo Rosa of Punks Music

Tell us the details about the show this weekend:

jeromejamesjrums and Rhythmstar have teamed up with GreenMinded and Sub.Mission Hawaii to present BASSGARDEN featuring RandomBreaksParty & Wes Smith of Juice Recordings.

Saturday, June 13th at NEXTDOOR in Chinatown 43 N. Hotel St. Honolulu, HI 96817 9:00pm - 2:00am

Headliners:

Wes Smith & Rhythmstar

Local DJ support from:

Miki Mayhem vs Dj Nalu CoonDog vs SilviaSativa Gardel Sean Til Dawn live drumming w/ Jerome James

Dance performances by: La Femme Rikita Ajna Nirvana Madame X Vicious Vixen Laura Rose

Related Links:

[Aloha State Breaks] [GreenMinded] [Sub.Mission Hawaii]

It's Wes Smith Yo! Tour De Dance heads to Broken Grooves in Seattle, Washington

The now famous It's Wes Smith Yo! The Album Tour winds along it's path to Seattle, Washington for this Saturday's show.  Miss 137 puts the brakes on to talk with Brian Trippdub - curator of the Broken Grooves event. Wes Smith Tour

Tell me about your event:

Broken Grooves is the longest running break beat weekly in the world. On June 7th it will be 14 and a half years. It was started at the time by a local crew by the name of the Midnight Sons, small crew of DJs, an MC and activists. The night originally started on a Tuesday and was moved to Sundays shortly after.

What is your mission for your event?

Our mission is simply to bring the best in breaks whether local or national to the Pacific North West. One thing that makes Broken Grooves special is consistency, every Sunday we attend our church and pray to the breakbeat gods, you can find us every Sunday at the same time in the same spot. Another thing that makes BG special is opportunity. We give everyone an opportunity to showcase different styles and skills, this keeps everyone involved and excited.

What is your main challenge?

The main challenge of operating a weekly is time. I have a family and its very time consuming to constantly have to book DJs, trying to get flyers made and printed, social media postings and events (and not just for BG, you need to post everywhere to get people out), trying to find last minute substitutions (cause sh*t happens), to actually being at the club for 4+ hours every Sunday. The rewards are obvious for anyone that doesn't get paid. THE MUSIC, that brokenbeat that runs through my veins. Oh and the people in the scene are pretty cool too.

How do you choose your talent?

Talent is chosen by styles, meaning I try to book DJs that have a similar sound. Seattle has so much breaks talent and many DJs only get the chance to play Broken Grooves.

Broken Grooves 1

What is your background to the scene?

Everything I know I taught myself. Right out of highschool I saved up to buy 2 turntables and a mixer and proceeded to lock myself in my room trying to perfect my craft. I would spend weeks of frustration trying to match beats to 2 different genres just because I didn't know any better, no teachers, no mentors, just me, my gear and a few records.

Tell me about the next Broken Grooves event with Wes Smith:

BG is located at the Monkey Loft 2915 1st Ave S, Seattle, Washington 98134

This is the first of many nights at our new home! Same old Broken Grooves new venue. We have a special night planned for you we are blowing the roof off this party and we start the night with the one and only Dot Diggler bringing the breaks, followed by BootyGuard hottest new breaks duo in Seattle. Closing the night is headliner Wes Smith. See you at our new home Seattle!!!

Thank you for your time Brian, having met you at this time last year I really enjoyed the vibe of Seattle and your event. You were a great host to me and I am happy to see Wes breaking the new venue's cherry with you all.  Have tons of fun and see you on the other side.

Related Links:

[Facebook Event] [Broken Grooves] [Monkey Loft] [Wes Smith - Album Info]

It's Wes Smith Yo! Ready for the Wiggle in San Diego, CA!

Wes Smith and his Magic Fugu float downstream for Wiggle in his home town of San Diego.  I spoke to promoter Brian Millar about the event at Kava Lounge this Friday. Wiggle flyer

Tell me a little how you put this event together with Juice Recordings:

We are trying to concentrate on a local event and to bring in quality talent. The focus is exclusively breakbeat which is unique to this area. Wes Smith (of Juice Recordings) and myself have lunch every week and discuss the logistics. We have all had a series of events and successes so we bring experience to the table.

Juice Recordings

Walk me through a Wiggle night, how do you book your shows?

We usually have 4 acts per night. We start with someone local that deserves the chance and then add guests from out of state with Omega Squad and Wes Smith as the residents.  We market to all the different teams and when it is show time, we and the crowd get loose and have a good time.

Alright give us the skinny on the show. Who, what, where, when?

Wiggle is a bi-monthly event in San Diego.  May 29th we are featuring EricRiggsbee (Oakland) and special guest Ghost MD alongside Wes Smith and Omega Squad for only $10. Come down and get loose with us!

Thank you, Brian. Many wishes to you all for a successful Wiggle!

Check out a few recent mixes from this weeks Wiggle line up.

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Related Links: 

[Wes Smith] [Omega Squad] [Eric Riggsbee] [Ghost MD]

Do You Even Wiggle? An Interview with Eric Riggsbee

Growing the #MagicFugu connection across the states,  Agent 137 catches up with Eric Riggsbee, the co-founder of Faultline - a Oakland based breakbeat monthly. Having met last year 4th of July weekend at Faultline, we quickly settled in and discussed Eric's career, the state of beats and the creative charge happening in downtown Oakland. Eric pic

So tell me about Faultline-

Well as you know, Faultline is a monthly Breakbeat party in Oakland, CA hosted by resident DJs- myself, DJ 138, and Justin Johnson, along with local guest DJs. Faultline has a new venue this Saturday for the grand opening-there is more foot traffic in this location and it is contained to all in one room and it us every 4th Saturday at The Rock Steady.


I have been talking to a lot of producers, DJS and promoters about the state of breaks and their take on the genre. Faultine is a primarily breakbeat show. What is your opinion on the genre and maybe help bridge the gap?

Breaks are a couple of years behind of some of the other genres but there are a lot more events now. Most of the DJs are breaks djs and we are getting all the local celebrities out of Burning Man camps. Space Cowboys, Dusty Rhino, Camp Charlie etc and they seem to be on the same page. Bass music has been remarketed for the youth though, in the past breaks had very little sub genres because there really were not enough people producing the different sounds to break it out into sub genres. Now it’s evolving around us. While it is coming back I think we all can agree that it is coming in baby steps, It's because we all want to do well and also do it right. With all of that going on, seeing more events and seeing the word breaks more often (at least the word is being thrown around more and more), we are driven to do it... the timing is right.

Burning Man stems from the Bay Area and I remember when I attended last year, the presence of breaks was very strong. Tell me how you see the Burner lifestyle is affecting music and art in Oakland. 

I live in a neighborhood with a lot of warehouses that a lot of the art for Burning Man is being built. Sometimes I take it for granted thinking it’s going on everywhere. I find myself Djing more and more with the burner crowd. We are very close to the Burning Man experience here which pushes creativity in so many ways- everyone around is doing art, music, SOMETHING. There are a lot of incredibly talented people around Oakland and San Francisco using self-expression in some way shape or form. It's an exciting time.
Eric Riggsbee logo
What about the self-expression of Eric Riggsbee? Tell us a little about your musical background - 
I played piano since 6 years of age until 9 and then drums from 10 until now. I was in bands from 12-22 and started djing at 18 in 1998. Basically my progression in music with drums helped me learn to DJ, it helps with rhythm. Breaking down the beat is a big part of being a drummer and it helps with DJing Breaks.

You have started on production as well - how did you start with production?

I took a community college EM class in 1998-1999 for Logic and used Reason for a while but now I'm using Ableton by trial and error and also by doing a lot of shadowing of other producers.

Any advice to aspiring producers?
Produce what you want to produce and don't worry how the track is going to sell or hit the top 10. Tracks that lay down a groove that move people are more important to me. Look what is really important to you and let that guide what you create.
Eric Riggsbee photo
What is next for you as an artist and Faultline?
  • Justin Johnson runs Barely Legal Records and there are a lot of big things happening on his label.  Adrenalinez will have a full length album out later this year. Other releases coming will be remixes of Adenalinez 'Wet Me" by The Gulf Gate Project and Run Riot, remixes of Justin's track "Body Movin" by Geon and Adrenalinez, a Sychosis remix of EvilBeat "On My Beat", and then a massive EP from Justin called "The Discos of Tron" that will also include remixes from Wes Smith, discObeta, Fire-Beat, and more TBA.
  • In July Faultine will be doing a breaks and drum&bass throwback to Electic Hectic called Foundation with the drum&bass crew Dystopia. If it goes well we will continue that on the second Friday of the month in Oakland.
  •  NEXT is Wiggle in San Diego this weekend with Wes Smith, Omega Squad and Ghost Md.
Wiggle flyer

Related links:

It's Wes Smith Yo! Rockin' Steady in Boulder, Colorado

Agent 137 keeps steady on her mission to follow the magic fugu aka the It's Wes Smith Yo! tour. This time she catches up with Brandon DeRosa part of the "Bee Humble Collective" to see what all the buzz is about in Boulder. Why We Groove


How did you start out in the scene?

I got into the scene at 16 when I bought first tables. My intent was to start scratching in a band (like Limp Biscuit did then), however, bands fell apart when you are a kid. Instead I started doing my own parties at 18 starting with a warehouse party. Eventually I got out of the scene when it started to decline but then got back into it eventually. I starting meeting people and crews in Denver - Denver is a really small scene with a REALLY big heart. It's been an uphill struggle but our scene has been coming back strong and all the crews have come together and really supported one another.


How did "Why We Groove" start? 

Around 4 years ago we used my uncle’s property and threw a small BBQ. The next year Karl Sav lived in Colorado so we booked him and really started thinking about expanding the show. In our third year we brought in Bella and Omar Santana because we grew up on this type of breaks and really wanted to portray both older and new styles. This year we are bringing in Wes and have a huge lineup of Colorado talent from all over the state and beyond as well.  It is a bunch of different styles and djs from different crews including some other types of broken beat, including drum & bass.


Who is throwing the show?

OvrDub  is a crew that throws a huge festival called FREEMAN at the same time as Burning Man where monies are donated to pay the DJs and everyone comes for free. It's an alternative for those who cannot afford to get to Burning Man and a way to give back to the scene. Michelle Blankenship is the Mothership and everyone added together is The Bee Humble Collective.

What makes your show different?

The property is beautiful - there is cottonwood and big huge trees. The sun sets on the mountains and the sun rises strategically in back of the djs. We shut down the second stage for sunrise and we plan choose the dj for sunrise carefully to be sure we maximize the experience. The line up is stellar with so many different styles, everyone should be happy with the experience.
Also, there is a limited amount of parking so we are only charging  $10 for the car load. As many people you can fit for ten bucks is a steal.
We have a fire poi crew,  really good live graffiti artists BLK MTL & SkitzoFrenic and are working with vending from Social Menace Clothing (yay Perez!), Primerdome and  the ROOT of the Hill.
 Why We groove Full flyer

What other shows do you throw?

We do some smaller shows throughout the year, Freeman pre-party (boat party), I have helped with FreeMovement , FreeThinking, CAKE, Audio Damage and help host nights at alot of the local breaks clubs nights such as Dirty Thursdays at the Milk Bar and HeadRush at Vinyl.

Finally - why Wes Smith? 

I have Wes Smith and Debbie B records from back in the day, I have known about him for a long time and have been paying attention. I put out some emails and responses back, but Wes has a lot promotion and buzz right now. Along with the new album coming out - fresh ideas, artwork, and stickers (kids want stickers). I have never done a party with so many positive people before  - our only goal is to shoot for a good vibe.

 Related links:

 Thank you, Brandon. I look forward to seeing the posts and pics online and wish you a wonderful show.
GOOD VIBES, ALL! 

It's Wes Smith Yo! Album Tour Navigates to St. Louis with XeroTribe

As the IWSY! tour continues to navigate the waters of the magic fugu ride, Wes Smith will stop next in St. Louis with Jen Z Zubal and Corey 'Dienda' Piper of XeroTribe. Wes, Corey, Jen and myself had the pleasure of meeting up at Miami Winter Music Conference where we all discussed the state of breaks, music and life in general. Last night I caught up with them again to discuss their personal career aspirations, their production company and what makes them unique in the industry. I Heart Breakbeats What is your musical background, Jen?

I come from a "Partridge" type family. Most of my family members either play an instrument and my mom sings and plays guitar.  I have been djing for over 10 years and I have been singing myself for a long time, but I felt like I was being taken advantage of in the business so I got out of it for awhile. My peers highly encouraged me to try again with good people and I started putting down vocals again.

What is your musical background, Corey?

My family is the opposite, no one was really into music but I took 7 years of piano, was in chorus, play guitar terribly... I have also Dj'd over 10 years myself and am now into the production side as well.

Where can we hear your collaborations?

We just released a single with Agent K and it's charting on the Beatport top #100 right now. Kerry was in Wisconsin and he reached out to us to hang out and get out of the cold. He came down, played a show with us and Kerry and I (Corey) spent the day in the studio together. We featured Jen's vocals and what resulted was "Apocalypse".

What is XeroTribe?

XeroTribe are 9 members including Jen and myself (Corey). We are a full service production company that have been pushing the breakbeat scene in the MidWest, primarily St. Louis, for about 6 years now. Our main focus is the total package and the EXPERIENCE. The music, sound, lights, visuals, costumes and decor all combined to put the party goer into the experience- rather than just observing it.  

XeroTribe

Tell me about your events and how you get such a diverse crowd:

We try to give a variety of music and we cater to as many genres as we can to get all walks of life into the door, but the centerpiece is usually a breakbeat headliner. For instance, Dubstep brings in the younger crowd and we keep some of the side rooms dedicated for a variety of genres. However, we may book a regional Dubstep act and then follow it with a Breakbeat, Trap or Drum&Bass headliner to give the younger crowd a chance to hear a broken beat. Usually it helps to get them interested and keeps them coming back to our next shows.

What does your area see from XeroTribe?

We do 3-6 events on average, our largest reoccurring one is Apocalypse and each year it becomes a different theme (Robot, Zombie, Post, etc). Also we do a monthly called "I Heart Breakbeats" which is strictly Breakbeats every third Friday at The Upstairs Lounge.

Wes Smith is headlining "I Heart BreakBeats" on Friday night. 

Yes! Wes is blowing the &*@$ up right now and these are the types of artists we want to play our parties. We want people who are current, relevant, up & coming and those that are QUALITY artists. We think Wes is all of that and more, he played our last Apocalypse party and we are excited to invite him back for "I Heart Breakbeats".

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Thanks, guys - I appreciate your time. I know we will be seeing each other next year at conference but in the meantime good luck with your next shows and your upcoming nuptials.

Happy Birthday Corey- Viva la broken beat!

Related links:

[DJ Jen Z on Soundcloud] [DJ Dienda on Soundcloud]

Copy of xero tribe logo large with text

 

It's Wes Smith Yo! Album Tour Heads for Charleston with DJ Skitch

Rolling on from NYC, Wes heads for Charleston SC to throw down with DJ Skitch.  Continuing my IWSY info gathering mission, I caught up with Kit Giles (aka Skitch) for this leg of the tour. I poked around for some intel on the breaks scene in SC and Kit's take on things.  Check the event and interview below. Wes Smith - Charleston

How did you start out in your scene?

I started listening to trance and drum & bass but the first events I attended were breaks shows so when I finally heard breakbeats I said WHAT IS THIS and I was hooked. I got into breakdancing and started djing. Breaks was really all I knew and I am very thankful I was brought into the breaks scene. I think that it's the most loving of all EDM genres and I am glad to see it rapidly growing back to where it was years ago.

We met up in Miami for the Winter Music Conference. What was your favorite Miami moment?

Definitely opening up for Monk with Aaron Sigmon at the Industry Social (Project Mayhem) event. I loved Monk even before I had become a dj so it was almost surreal. Also, Icey crushed it on that system at the Dog Eat Dog event. Tommy Sunshine at Future Sound of Breaks was absolutely amazing. The way he played was so unique I really enjoyed it. Christian Martin at the Stanton Warriors event was so good. Considering he doesn't really identify himself as a breakbeat artist, I thought what he did was unique and fresh.

(btw- I was there for that one I think you both did a phenomenal job)

SkitchCharleston used to be a place I would frequent edm shows when I lived in the South. How do you keep the musical interest alive in your city?

We started working with colleges and we would look to book opening support of all genres and bring in a large breaks headliner. It opens people's eyes to the genre because they are there to support their friends and the college crowd brings in the youth to the scene. Once they hear the headliner, they are blown away and they want to know what this music is that they are hearing, it has been working - our shows are very well attended.

What shows are you currently throwing?

On Thursday nights we do a full EDM show at Club NV called the "Charleston EDM Series" but EDM is growing in South Carolina so we try to do additionally a regional or national act at least once a month. The Wes Smith tour is going to be the one year anniversary for our EDM series so we wanted to book someone special for the occasion.

Damn right! Well, I thank you Kit for sharing all of this with myself and the rest of us reading about the Charleston scene. We wish you luck and have fun on Thursday!

Related Links:

[Facebook Event] [Club NV]

 

It's Wes Smith Yo! w/ Funky Flavor Breakbeat Culture, Orlando

Coming off the NYC leg of the It's Wes Smith Yo! Album tour, Wes gets ready to roll south for Orlando to break it down with the heads from Funky Flavor Breakbeat Culture. Event_FunkyFalvor_2015-05-09, #JuiceRecordings, #TheJuiceSquad, #StickyBumps,  #ItsWesSmithYo, #WesSmith,   #EDM, #UDM, #Bass, #Funk, #Breaks, #Breakbeat, #Garage, #2step, #UK, #FutureGarage,  #MagicFugu, #BringBackThatFunk, #Califunkya, #CampCharlie,  #USA, #California, #SanDiego, #Orlando, #SuiteB

Agent 137 caught up with FFBC's own Scotty Frasier and artist, Rich Doss to see what's going down. Every bit of them were excited to sit down and discuss with me the current state of breakbeat culture, the direction it is heading in their eyes and Wes Smith's tour.

Let's start with the beginning - what is Funky Flavor Breakbeat Culture?

Scotty: It started after I attended the Rick West memorial in Tampa about this time last year. Rick was a great and major influence in our lives. He was a pioneer that gave us something tangible to look forward to and his death and memorial really affected me. FFBC started as a Facebook page only to share music but became much more.

Who is FFBC?

It's myself and Timothy Barnard (21 Paths). After the memorial I walked up to Tim and asked him if he wanted to change break in Florida and he said YEH! The rest is history.

Rich what us your role?

I'm an artist with FFBC, I did the very first mix called This is BreakBeat Vol. 1.

Scotty: We like to promote the artists we see that have heart and push them to a higher level. That's what breaks culture is about, not to make money. Breakers seem to behave in a different way, they get the hell down and dance their asses off.  Rich has been there pretty much from the beginning by us to help this movement grow.

Rich: Yeh I really appreciate them taking me under their wing and am looking forward to the future.

Speaking of the future- what is next?

We just became a sub label of Cognitive and we are so excited to be a part of that. Now is the time to convince people to start taking breaks more seriously and apply the culture to life. We want to make smart decisions and help the kids to understand the culture and what we are about so they can apply it to real life. Being able to distribute and market a good message (not unlike Rick West did in the past for us) is a dream come true. Getting people to appreciate the underground and have a great time, there is something to be said about that. This has only been one year, we can't wait to see another year from now.  This is our passion and it's great to be able to share it with the people we love.

Talk to me about the show this week and why you picked up the IWSY tour? 

We are all watching Wes right now and what he is doing. It's rare that an artist isn't all me/me/me all the time and he is VERY intent on everyone else's success. He seems to really "get" all aspects and really is the epitome of what we know as PLUR. He brings everyone up and it's refreshing in this day. His music production is on point and he is a marketing guru. We haven't seen all of these factors in a lot of the upcoming artists and he is a role model to us all.

Related Links:

[Facebook Event] [Funky Flavor Breakbeat Culture] [Florida Breaks Council]

X FunkyFlavorBreakbeatCultureX #FloridaBreaksCouncilX #BassX #BringBackThatFunkX #EDMX #ItsWesSmithYoX BreakbeatX BreaksX Juice RecordingsX OrlandoX IWSYtourX #MagicFugu

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Thanks guys for the insight, until next time - follow the Magic Fugu!

-Agent137

It's Wes Smith Yo! w/Vitamin B Crew, New York City

Agent 137 is on a spy mission following Wes Smith around the world for the Magic Fugu tour.  Her mission is to gather musical intelligence on the crews that make the record go round, so peep this and more upcoming briefings in this space. Next stop is NYC so today we interviewed John (Tektite) and Tim (the Enchanter) of Vitamin B in the middle of a photo shoot for the album cover of Tim's new single.

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Vitamin B... What's in the name? Vitamin B is almost in their 7th year of promoting a monthly 1st Friday breakbeat show in NYC. Made up of purveyors of the broken beat : Tektite (founder), Tim the Enchanter, Illexxandra & Shisaa. There was a need in NYC for breakbeats in an unpretentious space to offer drinks at a decent NY drink price and a ticket price that would allow them to break even (but also throw a great party). They started an underground movement that has grown over the years to bigger (and legal) spaces, but kept the same grit and authenticity of the original movement.

Why the B? There was an element missing in Brooklyn so they felt Vitamin B was the right element to infuse. What the B stands for is a sealed and top secret only for them to know.

What are you bringing to NYC with these shows? Do you see the rerising of breakbeats? Breakbeats are the alternative to the 4X4 - they are bringing it all to the table but breaks spans such wide variety of different subgenres though juke, bounce, 2step, jersey club, drum&bass, etc and they always give the show a different feel from the 4X4 NY scene. Some of the newer up and coming producers like Mafia Kiss, Tony Quattro and Wuki don't necessarily identify as breakbeat artists so the newer generation is getting turned on to it more and more. The lines get more blurred and everyone is there for good music.

What's up next after this week's show for Vitamin B? DJ ICEY! July 10th - One of Tim the Enchanter's Miami Music Conference favorite moments was getting down to Icey at Future Sound of Breaks ( I actually ran into him during Icey and the smile was grand). He said listening to Icey come out with fresh rerubs and watching the whole room get down was refreshing and one of his favorite WMC moments.

The photoshoot - what's it about? Tim is coming out with a new single "BAD BITCH "on Martin Flex's label "Let's Go" soon, very very soon (It's the hotness).

Let's talk about Friday - ARE YOU EXCITED?

Yes! The Freestylers! Wes Smith! From buying Freestylers records back in the early 90's to where they are now, John is truly so damn excited to see em for the first time ever. They talked about Wes Smith and how he is an absolute pioneer of the era and they can't WAIT for him to bring the funk.

Can I get an Amen? The Amen Tee! A friend of theirs developed the design and actually did a "shirt off your back" silk screening at a show, but now you can get them online. Screw Capitalism! Unless you are buying this shirt. www.teespring.com/vitamin-b-presents-the-amen-b ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thanks for your time guys, I just bought my ticket to get up from 137 headquarters DC to NYC for the weekend. This will be my 4th VitaminB show (second Wes Smith VB show) and I wouldn't miss this one for the world.

Catch the Vitamin B crew this Friday with The Freestylers and Wes Smith and special guest DJ Quesquecest?

Event info: www.facebook.com/events/365289253666265/

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