Music On The Goe
David Goe on music
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By David Goe
Friday, February 7, 2014
Watching DJ Trizz spin live, you can tell he’s got things under control.
Behind a set of Technic turntables, Trizz, aka Aaron Markham, smoothly transitions from one song to the other like it’s no big deal when really it’s an impressive display of confidence from an underappreciated artist.
Perhaps the only frantic behavior comes from his eyes. Peering over the edge of his Mac Book Pro, Trizz constantly scans the room gauging the reaction each song gets as it hits the floor. If it sets the dance floor off, job well done. If the energy is off however, it’s no big deal. Trizz makes a quick course adjustment to get things back on point.
You know what you are in for when Trizz is at the controls: a dance-able night specifically tailored to you. One thing you can say about Trizz is he has got your best interest at heart.
“I believe in letting the night and crowd take us where it may,” Trizz said. “I play out a lot so I run through a lot of different genres and tunes and just feel out the crowd. Some nights you know exactly what you’re getting into and others you have to really work for a reaction.”
This exact mentality is the difference between a good DJ and a bad DJ. In an age of digital DJing when literally anyone can download a smart phone app and start mixing tunes in a matter of minutes, this skill of reading and reacting to an audience separates the good from the bad.
Trizz is a good DJ.
“I like to give people enough to make them feel comfortable and trust me,” Trizz said. Once he feels like he’s gained their trust, that’s when he ads his own flourishes and touches to the set.
What Trizz is able to accomplish on a given night out is actually pretty amazing to think about. He curates a music collection large and diverse enough to meet the needs of an audience, and has the ability to skillfully and seamlessly mix them together at the drop of a hat.
That’s probably why Trizz holds down so many weekly shows in Grand Junction. He plays Tuesday and Thursday nights at Charlie Dwellington’s, and Friday nights at the Rockslide.
All this steady work and devotion to his craft has paid off in a big way.
Trizz recently played a number of high profile shows in the Aspen area, including the most recent Winter X Games, and opened for Capital Cities at the Belly Up.
“I started doing some gigs in Aspen in 2012 and became good friends with Mike Nakagawa,” Trizz said. Nakagawa, better known as DJ Naka G, serves as the X Games resident DJ and music director, and currently isin Sochi Russia working during the Winter Olympics.
“He’s a busy guy and I was fortunate to pick up some of the gigs he couldn’t take on. That’s how I got my foot in the door. I owe quite a bit to Mike,” Trizz said.
While their friendship will almost certainly bring more high profile gigs Trizz’s way, he prefers to spend most of his time in the clubs.
“I like club gigs. I like the feeling of when you have the club in a stranglehold and every tune kills,” he said.
That right there says it all. Trizz gets just as much from the audience as the audience gets from him. It’s a special relationship that only performers understand and the driving force behind one of Grand Junction’s premier DJs.
By David Goe
Friday, February 7, 2014
1) How long have you been DJing for? When did you first know this is something you wanted to do? What DJs do you look up too?
I've officially been DJ'ing for a little over four years. I have always been into music and started taking piano lessons and joined choir in middle school. I used to be in charge of the music at our middle school dances but I wouldn't consider that DJ'ing, more of song selecting. I was heavy into those CD clubs back in the day so my collection was respectable amongst my peers.
I really wanted to get into DJ'ing after seeing Z-Trip open for The Roots back in 2004. Since then I started following DJ culture and going to shows. I always had the itch to get into dj'ing but didn't know where to begin. I kept going to shows and stayed a fan observing from afar until 2009 when I bought my first gear with my college scholarship money, sorry Mom!
DJ's I look up to: Z-Trip, Jazzy Jeff, A-Trak, Diplo, Vice, DJ Spider, DJ Bonics, Chris Karns, D-JR, Naka G, Jazzy Gems
2) Talk about your setup. It looks like you use Serrato w/ time coded vinyl. That's a pretty unique setup, how'd you decide on that gear?
I use Technics 1200MK5 turntables, Rane 62 mixer w/ Serato Software and time coded vinyl and Macbook Pro. The DJ's I admired the most were using the same setup. Turntables and CDJ's are considered the "Club Standard" so I thought, why not learn on a universally accepted setup and be able to play whenever and wherever. I always carry my laptop so I'm good to go!
3) What's your personal philosophy when putting together a set? You play a lot of different genres, how do you mix it all together in a cohesive way?
It's not very unique but I believe in taking a musical journey and letting the night and crowd take us where it may. I play out a lot so I run through a lot of different genres and tunes and just feel out the crowd. Some nights you know exactly what you're getting into and others you have to really work for a reaction. Sometimes that reaction is good, sometimes it's bad but that's what makes it fun.
I like to give people enough to make them feel comfortable and trust me and then it's time for some curve balls to keep people on their toes.
4) You've been up to some pretty cool things lately, playing the XGames, opening for Capital Cities, past Snowboarding Grand Prix events. How'd you get hooked up with those gigs?
I started doing some gigs in Aspen in 2012 and became good friends with Mike Nakagawa who is the X-Games resident DJ and was the music director for the 2010 Olympics and will be working the 2014 Olympics as well. He's a busy guy and I was fortunate to pick up some of the gigs he couldn't take on. That's how I got my foot in the door. I owe quite a bit to Mike, shout out DJ Naka G!
5) What's your favorite type of show to play? A big event like the XGames or a club show?
I like club gigs. It's good to be versatile, helps paying the bills and it's refreshing to do something different but I like the feeling of when you have the club in a stranglehold and every tune kills.
6) You've got pretty steady work in GJ (Dwellington's on Tuesdays and Rockslide on Fridays), what do you make of the local music scene here (both musicians and audiences)? Where do you see it going in the future?
Yes. I currently hold down three nights in GJ. TwoferTuesday at Charlies, Flip Night on Thursdays (Charlies) and Catch The Beat on Friday's at The Rockslide.
The local scene is getting better. There is a good core of musicians, DJ's, and promoters that work hard to maintain and develop this area. I think with the growth of the College, we'll start to see a boom in the local scene. There's some traction right now, and it's exciting to see where it may go. There's major potential for expansion but it's on the shoulders of the musicians, DJ's, Promoters, bars/venues, fans, and music lovers to make it happen. The scene is what you make of it. If you want it better, get up off your ass and quit complaining and help make it better! There's no magic formula, it comes down to who is willing to hustle and work for it. The more people participating- whether it's performing, promoting, attending shows, the better. I'm interested to see how Junction develops in the next couple of years, musically.
7) Whats the biggest misnomer and pet peeve about the Grand Junction music scene?
My biggest pet peeve about the Grand Junction scene is hearing people say there isn't anything going on. There may not be as many options as a big city, but there still is something worthwhile to check out regularly.
Biggest misnomer would be outsiders may think GJ doesn't know how to get down. Not true. People here know how to have a good time!
8) What sound are you obsessed with right now? Where do you hope to take your sound in the next couple years?
Really been digging artists like Wave Racer, Keys N Krates, and Trippy Turtle. It's almost a soulful trap, jersey club sound if you will. I get so happy when I hear stuff like that.
I really wanted to develop my skills as a DJ before I tried any production. In the next couple of years I would like to experiment with producing. In the meantime, I would like to keep pushing myself as a DJ and hopefully deliver the soundtrack to people's night out, one they can enjoy themselves to!
9) What does the future of DJing look like?
I wish I knew! I think it's in a good place, the exposure is at an all time high and I think with technology and people's curiosity it's only going to get more creative.
10) Anything you'd like to add?
Thanks to David Goe! Follow me on Twitter and Facebook!
By David Goe
Friday, January 31, 2014
By David Goe
Friday, January 31, 2014
By David Goe
Friday, January 24, 2014
On the eve of the 56th annual Grammy Awards, I have to say that I’m changing my tune regarding Music’s Biggest Night.
In the past, I’ve referred to the Grammys as a promotional hack job to pump album sales, a staunch supporter of mediocrity, and a contrived train-wreck. Not exactly the highest of praise.
I still believe all those things, by the way, only now I better understand where they are coming from.
This year, I can’t fault the Recording Academy for hosting the glossy, star-studded commercial that is the televised broadcast event. After a dismal 2013 campaign that saw digital music sales drop 6 percent and overall album sales drop 8 percent, the music industry needs to drum up income by any means necessary.
My mistake in the past was to consider the Grammys as meaningful awards honoring true artistic achievement, much like the United Kingdom’s Mercury Prize. That’s not the case.
The Grammys, and this year’s in particular, are propaganda to show that the industry isn’t broken. It’s as strong as ever.
In a year when Adele isn’t around to save your butt from historically low record sales, I totally understand nominating Taylor Swift’s “Red” for Album of the Year. Who cares that “Red” came out in 2012? The album is certified platinum four times over, and her tour grossed $110 million!
Swift is a young attractive female, and one of the few bright spots for the industry. I’d hitch my wagon to that cash cow too, if I could.
I can’t blame the Recording Academy for hocking watches. Seriously, they partnered with high-end Italian fashion house Gucci to create a Grammy special edition, $7,900 watch. It’s clear nobody wants to buy albums anymore, so why not get into the jewelry game?
Selling over 600 of these diamond studded, Grammy-logo stamped, rubber-strapped, digital timepieces is essentially the equivalent of a gold album (500,000 copies sold).
I get it. At this point, anything that fills the coffers will do.
Since 1999, it’s been nothing but hardship for the music industry. After totaling $38 billion in 1999, revenues have trended down to the point where the music industry is now collecting less than $16 billion annually. In just 15 years, the industry has lost more than half of its revenue.
Coincidentally, 1999 was also the year Napster, the peer-to-peer file-sharing site, launched and created the digital age of music we currently live in — an age to which the music industry has yet to adjust.
According to the CBS promos, it’s business as usual for the Grammys. Every picture on Grammy.com is of a smiling, happy musician. Don’t be fooled by the glitz and fool’s gold of the Grammy-hype machine. The music industry as we know it is in hospice. Even the positives from 2013 are not welcome tidings.
Music streaming is up 32 percent, the approximate revenue value of 59 million albums sold. That sounds impressive, but when you break down the numbers it’s anything but. Fifty-nine million albums worth of revenue is the equivalent of over 118 billion streams. That’s billion with a “B.” In other words the streaming value per song is worth fractions of a cent.
Music streaming also is cannibalizing digital music sales, which are down for the first year ever.
Vinyl sales are up 33 percent, however that represents only 6 million albums sold, a small fraction of overall music sales. Daft Punk’s “Random Access Memories,” another nominee for Album of the Year, was the highest selling LP title, but only moved 49,000 copies.
The industry can spin those numbers however they like and put smiling happy people on television, but they can’t duck reality forever.
The music industry is on its deathbed, and the grim reaper is inching closer and closer.