That DJ Dan interview

DJDanPic2_t270You’re celebrating 20 years as a DJ. If you had to choose three of the most memorable moments, what would those be?

I’d probably say Burning Man, this party called “Aphrodite’s Temple” we had in Long Beach in 1992, and probably pick one of the Funky Tekno Tribes in San Francisco.

What’s up with your Future Retro album right now?

Basically, I was kind of feeling like I wanted to do my album with not only new stuff, but also going back to the stuff that really inspired me and to kind of do covers of tracks that really made me excited about dance music. So I picked six of my favorite old school tracks… it’s cool because basically what this project has allowed me to do is take all of these old songs and do my versions of them and then I can continue to remix them or get people to remix them forever. So I get to reinterpret them. Its kind of like a fun little puzzle or a toy that I’ve created, so it’s pretty exciting.

When released, it’ll be your first artist album, correct? Any reason why now?

I would have done it before but I was always more focused on doing CDs and whatnot. Technically if you were to go and take all my songs I’ve ever put out, I’d probably have three artist albums really. For this album, it’s crazy because I’ve done about 25 tracks and I’ve had to narrow it down to 12 so I just decided it was time to take my vision of what I wanted and take the six tracks of where I feel music is headed and the six that I did covers of and did Future Retro and felt like it was time to do it.

You frequent Vegas quite a bit and you and Donald Glaude play together a lot. How did that collaboration come about?

Donald’s actually been DJing longer than I have. He used to play at the teen club that I used to go to when I was in high school… So we’ve been friends since we were like 15. We started hanging out and when I move to LA, he said,” Keep in contact with me.” I started doing parties and doing Funky Tekno Tribe then we brought him out to LA because he’d never been to California before. So we always remained in touch and friends and now we work together. Because of our history and the music style of Seattle and where we grew up we kind of think the same, so it just made sense for us to play a 2×4 together.

You’ll be at Moon on Sunday, September 20 with Glaude. What do you think is the key to a successful 2×4 set?

A lot of it is body language… We’re very comfortable with each other and we talk about and [share] music… There’s been time when there’s been six things going on at once and we’re so in sync with each other and we’re both shocked that it sounds so crazy and we’re looking at the crowd and they’re freaking out. But you really can’t do that with just anybody. I would not be able to do that with anybody else and he’s the same way; he’s tried it, I’ve tried it. I don’t know how to explain it other than the fact that we really trust each other and we both [think] first priority is the crowd. I think that and just our history growing up together.

Has it always been like that for you guys?

Yeah, he let me play at his club. He had a residency at this club called Underground. When I was first learning how to mix I was so nervous I dropped the needle on the record and skipped it across the record. He came up on the microphone and apologized to the crowd, but let me keep playing and it was great. It was just really cool and I never forgot that. We have each other’s backs and that’s an important thing, especially during a time where I think a lot of DJs see this whole thing as being very competitive, where we look at is as being very much a family. We’re both trying to do the same thing and we’re both trying to make people feel good through music and that’s really what it is about at the end of the day.

You’re the DJ Dan, but there’s another “DJ Dan” out there. What’s up with that?

There’s one that we are aware of and it’s a conspiracy theory thing through that show Lost. It is a bit strange, but there’s not too much we can do about it.

You travel all over the globe constantly. Any clue how many frequent flier miles you’ve logged?

I have been up to a million on one airline… I try to ignore it and then all of a sudden it’s like “We need to go on vacation. Let’s use these.”

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