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Friday, May 1, 2015

[New Interview] DJ Charlie



So where were you born? Where have you lived or spent a lot of time and how do you think that affected your musical taste?

I was born in Glendale, California. I moved to Austin when I was 8 and have been here ever since. When I was a kid it was what ever was on TV, in middle school I was exposed to a lot of Alternative/Classic Rock, then in high school it was a lot of electronic music and Hip Hop. In Austin there are a lot of garage/indie Rock bands on top of a big influence from Houston Rap as well as a thriving nightlife/club scene. So my musical tastes have become very diverse.

A lot of people in Austin know you from your time with LNS Crew and Table Manners Crew. When did you first meet the other members of those crews and what was that like?

So me and Cory knew each other from high school. 7-8 years later during one SXSW (2011 I think), I met Cory again at Sole Fresco (What is now Collective Status) and he asked me if I could be him and Kydd's DJ and I agreed. It's been that way ever since. With Table Manners Crew, I used to serve Dirty Harry a bowl of Pho every other week or so at Pho Hoang where I worked during High School, Tats I heard about through the Guitar Center Spin off, Digg was introduced to me by Casey Cuts, and Slyce and Ramo I met through Digg.

What did you first start spinning? What do you like to play genre-wise now and are there types of music that you really like but can't really spin at the shows you play?

When I began, it was a cluster fuck. I had a little bit of every thing. I made a trance mix I recorded through a cassette recorder that I handed to Joey, a house DJ I knew at the Thundercloud down a couple suites from Pho Hoang. Looking back on it now, that was probably the shittiest mixtape ever. Then I discovered Drum and Bass and that became my thing for a long time. Eventually I think I had like 7 record crates of Drum and Bass 12"s. I've been getting into some Juke and Future Bass recently though. I like the stuff Soulection and HW&W put out. Every thing I like I play. It's all about timing.


There was a time in Austin where it felt like you were spinning damn near every night at different venues. What do you think it is that separates DJs that can do that from the hobbyist DJs?

Yeah it still feels that way. I just don't promote every thing I do because it's not necessary and annoys people. How serious you take DJing as a career is what differentiates a hobbyist. Once you have it in your mind that you want to make a living DJing, it becomes your profession and you must now think of the business side of things.

Your girl DJ Jeska has been killing the game lately and you were one of the ones who watched her come up. What do you think are the differences between y'all styles?

Jessie plays a lot of Hip Hop from a time when I was digging through Drum and Bass catalogs. So there are a lot of gems there that she's uncovering. She will also get the females to respond stronger and quicker with tracks that are more RNB. I might have a more aggressive track selection.

You recently took a trip to Vietnam. What's it like in Asia to be involved in the hiphop and electronic scene?

Hip Hop is definitely alive and well in Vietnam. There is a lot of music coming out of the country now. They are able to keep up with new styles and put their own spin on it. Vietnamese people naturally love to sing so music is definitely in abundance over there.

As an Asian, What are some of your favorite spots to eat around town? Doesn't have to be only Asian spots, but come on... you're Asian so you gotta mention at least a couple.

Not much of an option. Probably better to go to Chinatown in Houston. BUT this is my list for Asian restaurants in Austin I eat at:

JAVA NOODLES
FIRST CHINESE BBQ
TATSU YA
MIDORI
FORTUNE
COCO'S CAFE
PHO HOANG
888 (The Vietnamese spot)
888 (The Korean Spot)
XIAN SUSHI
MUSASHINO
KOREA HOUSE
PHO SAIGON

Last question, what are the residencies that you spin at and where can people catch you playing?

I move around a lot, but every Sunday I do a live broadcast with Casey Cuts and Jeska under Dusty Groove Radio through http://mixlr.com/dusty-groove-radio/. We have all of our episodes on Soundcloud as well for playback at https://soundcloud.com/dusty-groove-radio.

Then theres the bi-weekly beat challenge group called Feedback Alliance, which is a group of producers who have to make a new track every 2 weeks using one person's stems and that gets published via its Soundcloud profile https://soundcloud.com/feedbackalliance

The Dusty Groove Radio and Feedback Alliance live monthly show is on the 2nd WED. of the month at PLUSH . To see my upcoming gigs you can check my twitter account or Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DJCharlie512 and I also put out mixtapes on the regular through my Soundcloud account.

You can follow DJ Charlie at https://twitter.com/DJCharlie512 and instagram.com/DJCharlie512.

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