Your heart was set on being a DJ since high school. What is it about DJing and music that makes you so passionate about it?
When I was 12, it was clear that music was the only thing I was good at and I had an early passion for technology. There weren’t many ways to discover Electronic music in Vermont (USA). But I stumbled on to it from listening to college radio. People would always give me a hard time for listening to Electronic music, but I ignored those idiots and just pressed on with the music I loved.
What is it about your music that your fans respond to so strongly? Could it be this element which has resulted in you receiving two Grammy nominations?
My songs focus on the quality of songwriting and vocals. While my sound keeps evolving, I am consistently inspired by great chord progressions and voices that stick in your head. For me, I have to feel that the music I make has some longevity. It has taken a while to carve my own path — but it’s been worth it.
Would you be working on anything new at the moment? Tell us about it.
My new single, Your Love featuring The Outfield has just came out. It’s a re-working of the 1980s classic hit. It’s a personal favourite. I contacted the band and asked if I could do a new version of their song, and they were said, ‘Great, we just recorded new vocals already. Done deal!’ I hope it becomes an anthem. When I get back to the US, I’ll be launching a three-month bus tour across the US and Canada.
Is there anything in particular that you hope to see or once your first visit?
I am so excited! I have wanted to come to India to play for years. I have heard so many great things about the (music) scene, the fans, and the country. Hopefully, this will be the first of many trips.
What can Mumbai fans expect from your gig?
My set is all about a mix of my own productions, mash-ups, and favourite music of the moment. I try to play a fairly varied and dynamic set that is a roller-coaster of emotions. Most of it is on the fly — reacting to the crowd.
Your advice for aspiring DJs?
It takes time. Build your reputation and build your contacts one at a time. Don’t shop your music to labels until you’ve begun to create a small following. Ask for feedback and keep pushing.
On August 1, 9 pm onwards
At Royalty, Waterfield Road, Bandra. Entry Rs 700 to Rs 1,800