I am pretty much sick of the DJ Mag Top 100… it seems like the list continues to sell out, and more pop is being let in and is rising to the top. Electronic dance music is not pop, and while no one listened to David Guetta when he was actually good, people flock to him now because he is producing with popular artists. Anyway, moving on. The guy I am sitting with today is NOT pop, rather one of the most talented artists I have heard in a long time. I am SO excited to have him here with me today. He produces beats that make you get up and move. I mean that… listen to a few of his tracks and tell me you don’t dance. I can’t get enough of this guy, and I hope names like this and productions like this start making some noise… no pun intended. It is my absolute pleasure to be sitting with Kilo, my new favorite DJ.
Where do we begin… let’s start with your name. Kilo seems to be a pretty generic name. Where did that come from? And is it just Kilo, or DJ Kilo?
It’s just Kilo. I like to think of myself as an artist and being a DJ is just part of the package. I was originally spelling it Key Low, which was sort of a play on words because I play piano/keyboard and there’s a lot of bass or “low” end in my tracks, but after promoters kept spelling it wrong on flyers and I kept having to explain to people why it was spelt that way, I decided to just stick with Kilo! It seems to stick in peoples heads and looks good on a flyer/poster.
Most folks would consider you an up and coming artist. When did you get started in electronic music, and what sort of success have you had thus far with EDM?
I am definitely up and coming, I’m a long way from my peak. I’ve been doing music seriously for about two years now but have been playing piano and messing about with music since I was very young. I had my first set of decks when I was thirteen so I’ve been DJing over a decade! I’ve had seven tracks released on Beatport, three of them which Beatport chose to be featured tracks. At the moment I have loads of new tracks waiting to be released but am waiting for the right label who wants to back me properly. I have also been working on some pop/house crossover with writers who are signed to the music giant EMI Music. We have made some really good tracks together, were just currently waiting for the right artists to take the tracks.
You recently remixed a Lil Wayne song. When you work on a track like that, do you have to get their permission before you can remix?
I do remixes like this purely for promo. It racks up YouTube hits and helps people know the name Kilo, as long as it’s for promo you don’t need their permission.
How may artists have you remixed? Is there any one remix that means more to you than the next?
I’ve only done a few remixes, as to be honest I would rather work on my own material than mix someone else. I’m a massive Kanye fan so my favorite would have to be my All of the Lights Remix (Click here to watch the YouTube video of that remix.) It’s had over 30,000 hits!
You are utilizing all the social networks. From Facebook to Twitter, YouTube and beyond you are pretty much covered across the board. How do you find time for all of these social media solutions?
Hard work! I’m earning just enough from music to do it full time so it’s just part of daily routine to update and stay social. I’m a big fan of Twitter! (@kilomusic) I’ve had some good help from Cabin Fever Global, who do everything from music/fiilm production to managing artists. There last two films, Anovahood and Screwed both feature productions from myself and I’ve also just signed over three tracks to the new Gum Ball rally film out next year.
So I LOVE the picture of you… well, you are pretty much taking a bite out of an album. What’s the story with that photo?
I was doing a photo shoot with some of the other artists who use Cabin Fever… they looked over after and I just took a few props along and that was an idea I had! The photographer loved the idea and we got some really good shots!
You are originally from the UK if I’m not mistaken. Do you ever get the chance to perform over here in the states?
Yes, I’m from the UK, just south of London. I definately want to perform in the US buts it’s just a case of building my fan base and getting promoters to believe in me. I’m sure ill be out there one day soon!
There are SO many great performers out there. Who are some of your favorites? What are you listening to these days?
I love all great music across the board. I generally listen to dance music when I’m partying and hip hop/rap when I’m relaxing or driving. On the dance side my current favourites are Afrojack, Avicii, Dirty South and Swanky Tunes. My all time favorite musician is Kanye West; I listen to a lot of Kanye, also Jay Z, Drake, Lil Wayne but also just anything that’s good, I’m not scared to admit I even enjoy a bit of pop music every now and again!
Some call is house. Others might call it dance or trance. What do YOU call it? Is it possible to describe your genre in one word?
In one word, DANCE! My style is a mix of electro and progressive house; it’s very hard to put it in one category. I’m more going for the epic, uplifting progressive sound at the moment, but the main thing I go for in a track is that it makes you feel good and makes you want to dance!
The more I listen to dance, the more I want to start producing tracks. What made you decide to start producing?
I’ve just always been interested in making music and I just thought I’d try it one day. I seemed to catch on really quickly and it just went from there. I’m now in the studio every day!
I’ve been all over Europe, but never to London. What’s the dance scene like over there?
It’s really good; there are so many clubs in and around London that there’s always something good on. My personal favorite is Ministry of Sound. I’m up there most weeks. They always have big lineups and I’ve met alot of big DJs by going there.
I recently attended Electric Zoo 2011. There were some 85,000 people there for three days of beats. What’s the biggest crowd you have ever played for?
Nothing on that level… yet. One day I’ll get there! I’ve played some decent size clubs, the biggest crowd probably around 1,000 people I guess… it’s hard to say.
How do you stay motivated night after night?
I believe in life you should do what you love doing and for me that’s making music and sharing it with people by DJing. Sometimes it’s hard to stay motivated but I just have alot of self belief and when I get strangers coming up to me or hitting me up on Twitter saying they love my tracks, or have been playing my latest DJ set none stop it makes all the hard work worth while!
Let’s say that you weren’t producing beats… what would you be doing?
I enjoy most sports especially football, golf and boxing. I also get down the gym quite a bit so I guess something active and sporty.
I know it’s a few years from now, but where do you see yourself in five years?
In five years, I want to have established a good name for myself in the dance industry and be getting bookings worldwide. I’m improving musically every year so I’d like to have had some big dance hits under my belt by then. It’s all about just taking it one step at a time and working as hard as I can to make it happen.
I feel like I could ask you questions all day, but I know you are a busy guy. That being said, thanks for taking the time to sit down with me for this interview. In all of the interviews that I do, I always give the artist the last word. Go.
Just like to say thanks for taking an interest and doing this interview! And just to everyone reading watch out for the name Kilo!