With this year's West Coast Weekender fast approaching, we check in quickly with two of the star attractions...
As you're hopefully aware by now, this year's West Coast Weekender will be taking place at the Viejas Casino resort, just outside of San Diego, California on 2-6 May.
Launched in 2016, West Coast Weekender is, like ADE or WMC, a music industry conference and festival combined. It's the brainchild of Oscar P, a New York industry veteran who relocated to California a few years ago, but is brought to you in association with a number of key dance industry players including the likes of Roland and Traxsource, as well as several media partners including DJ Times over in the US and, on this side of the pond, your very own iDJ. We couldn't be more delighted to support an event whose line-up boasts the big-hitting likes of Claptone, Carl Craig, The Pharcyde, Miguel Migs and Gene Farris.
Two other big house music names that'll be appearing this year include Mr V and Osunlade. So with the big event only a little over a month away, Oscar fired some quick Q&A questions their way, and this was what they told him…
What DJ and/or producer most influenced you, and why?
Mr V: "Starting as a DJ, that was Louie Vega around 1994 when I got my first experience. His technical skill, music selection and vibe-setting were just unmatched by any DJ I ever experienced. Starting as a producer, there were many but again I'd say Masters At Work, not only because I worked for them but because they were doing some truly groundbreaking work at the time of their introduction to my production life."
Osunlade: "Moodymann, because created a signature sound, which is very important for my approach in music."
What should people expect from your performance at West Coast Weekender?
Mr V: "Great music and a unique vibe."
Osunlade: "To dance."
What’s your DJ platform of choice, and why?
Mr V: "I used to use Traktor software, but now I use SSD thumb drives because they're easy to travel with and portable enough not to lose or forget."
Osunlade: "I play flash drives, because I travel constantly and it’s too damn expensive and careless to do otherwise."
…and what’s your DAW of choice, and why?
Mr V: "My DAW of choice is Logic Pro X: the ease of use, ease of layout, large quantity of solid stock plug-ins and the price are perfect."
Osunlade: "Logic, because it’s human and I use it as a tape machine, as opposed to a tool that creates for me."
What do you make of the fact that DJ culture has finally become a dominant musical movement in America? Upsides/downsides?
Mr V: "It’s great. The upside is that it’s easily accessible now, the downside is that not everyone knows how to DJ!"
Osunlade: "This is a double-edged question, however I’ll try to tackle it. I feel that the fuck culture has become greater than the music, which is sad as the fuck used to be the educator and now they are a commodity of themselves and music has nothing or very little to do with the outcome of what the hype has given."
What advice would you give to up-and-coming DJs and producers?
Mr V: "If you're a producer, use YouTube to explore production how to’s and learn the basics of production: compression, EQ'ing, limiting and so on. There is a slew of great video content on there that can really help you get started on exploring mixing.
"If you're a DJ, then go out and listen to your favourite DJs! See how they capture a crowd and learn to incorporate your own skill after that experience, take pieces (not all) of what you saw, apply it to what you want to do and mould it to your own style."
Osunlade: "Be original. Create a sound palette that is your staple sound and grow from there. But be original!"
Finally, what’s the next big project for you?
Mr V: "A monster collaboration with Huxley called Piano Dance – look out for it!"
Osunlade: "po-lar-I-ty [Osunlade's current project with Burlie Mac] and my next album, Ache."
Words: Oscar Poche, Russell Deeks
West Coast Weekender is at the Viejas Casino Resort, Alpine, CA from 2-6 May.