Artist Interview: 1-on-1 with DJ Sega

Artist Interview: 1-on-1 with DJ Sega

A few weeks ago, I was listening to the radio on Spotify, and I heard a song that had me dancing in my chair. I didn’t recognize the song, so I looked to see who it was. It was DJ Sega. I LOVED the name, and immediately looked up his work. From his remix of Bodies Hit The Floor to his take on Last Resort, this guy is loaded with talent. He calls his sound “Philly club music”, and pretty much makes a ton of noise. There are even a few tracks he makes mention of Sega, one of the best video game consoles ever released. On his remix of Last Resort, he throws some Lil Jon in there at the most appropriate times. I love it! DJ Sega is about to hit the road and is destroying a city near you soon. I can’t wait to see this guy live. When people think of dubstep, they think of names like Skrillex. Soon enough, people will be adding DJ Sega to that list. Come on people, let’s dance! It’s my pleasure to introduce you to DJ Sega.

I am sure I could figure it out, but where did the name come from?

It came from playing Sega Genesis games for years after getting other consoles. It also stands for me separating myself from everybody and everything else. Meaning I don’t consider myself as a “player”, but the game itself.

Because your DJ name is DJ Sega, did you need permission from Sega to use that?

Um… no.

DJ Sega isn’t your real name. What is your real name?

My family knows me as Robert Taylor, Jr. But even my mom calls me “Seg” from time to time… which is pretty weird.

This mashup stuff is pretty popular. Girl Talk comes to mind. Who are some other popular mashup DJs?

I dunno… looks like everybody’s trying to be an EDM DJ these days. I honestly can’t tell DJ Tiesto from DJ Tits.

The song Last Resort is good… but you make it better by throwing in some Lil Jon. When you sit down to do a mashup, do you already know the technique you want to use, or does it just sort of come out as you are producing?

It’s a little bit of both. It depends on the song, my mood, and what I ate. Sometime I have a plan for what I want to do to a song, and other times I just kinda “freestyle” it.

I haven’t seen you live… yet. What can fans expect from a live performance?

The unexpected! Think of it like this… this is your brain. My music is your brain remixed. Any questions?

Going back to the rights, when you use a song like that, do you need the original artist’s permission?

Um… no. I remix what I want; whether I get permission or not.

By buddy John and his wife Esther just moved to Philadelphia. I am going to be out there this spring visiting. Do you play out a lot around Philly? What are some of the better clubs in the city?

I barely play in Philadelphia anymore because I travel a lot! I have no idea! It’s politics wherever I go.

You are all over Facebook and Twitter. Who manages those accounts?

Me… I say and do everything! Even with “other admins”… smh!

I am really digging your new single Multiple Choices. You worked with HDM Sounds and BMV on that track. How did you get connected with those guys?

Ha! I didn’t! That’s not my EP and that’s another DJ Sega. There are like four other DJ Segas in the world. Even though I’m the most popular, I still wish them nothing but the best. I actually have 4 EPs I released for free almost a year ago. And I’m almost done my first all original EP ironically called “Is That Your EP?”

Do you have a Sega? I have one… but never play it!

Yeah, I have a Genesis. But I don’t play it because I’ve gotten the emulator and ROMS. I play those from time to time.

I don’t see any tour dates right now. Are you going to be hitting the road this fall?

Coming up I have an Australia tour around Halloween. But before that I have quite a few dates all around the USA. You’ll never know where I’ll pop up and play a set; planned or not! I’ve been handling my business for about three years now; bookings and all. And yes, sometimes it gets to be too much for me. I have been in talks with agents but nothing has been finalized. I haven’t found the right team to help handle my business… yet!

You recently opened for Diplo. Tell me a little bit more about the Mad Decent Block Party.

The block party is something small we were doing as a label to show the community love. We had free food, dunk tanks, and a showcase of live performances from artists off the label as well as friends of ours. It was something small that started in Philadelphia and grew into a much bigger event over the years. It grew to the point where other cities wanted parts. Every year my sets get bigger and better just to match the energy of how big the block party gets. I can honestly say 2010 was my favorite. It had the energy of a festival but i was close enough to pass a little something to the crowd.

There are so many options to choose from, but what headphones do you use?

When I DJ, I don’t use headphones; I haven’t for years. As far as when iI listen to music, as long as the bass is good and the volume is loud, it’s good enough for me. I used to buy Coby headphones all the time. They were my absolute favorite.

What’s the biggest crowd you have ever played for?

That’s a VERY hard question to answer. I’ve played so many venues in so many cities. But specific places that comes to mind is The Bowery Ballroom in NYC and the Chinese Laundry in Sydney. As far as outside, the most energy came from the Mad Decent Block Party in Philly and NYC in 2010; huge crowds and I’ve gotten crazy encores from the audience.

What is the Jamz Roller Skating Center?

Jamz is a skating center in northeast Philadelphia. It was an amusement center that had lots of games, food, skating, and a live DJ. When I did the teen late night parties there, the place got so crowded full of kids, we eventually would shut down the skating so the kids can party on the skating floor. It’s no longer called “Jamz”, though. That place has gone through many changes over the years since I was a teen. I always knew it as “WOW Skating Rink”. Very shortly after I started to spin the teen late nights there it became Jamz Entertainment Center. Now it’s called Rolling Thunder.

Where do you get inspiration for a new track?

Anywhere and everywhere.

Your logo even uses the Sega font. What was your favorite game on Sega?

My favorite game on Genesis is like picking a favorite song; I can’t! I like NBA Jam, Moonwalker, and Sonic Spinball.

Smoking weed is illegal. But that doesn’t stop you. How do you avoid getting caught?

Um… no comment.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you on stage?

Nothing really embarrassing has really happened to me. When I was on tour with Buraka, I did a show where somebody going apeshit ended up unplugging the entire stage. I almost lost my cool until the audience started chanting my name. It was awesome.

Tell me a little bit more about your relationship with Mad Decent.

I signed with the label around August of 2007. I’m not sure but I think I was one of the first artists to be signed to Diplo’s label. Since then, I’ve done so many remixes, wrecked so many cities, and according to the fans I meet, change so many people lives. I love the label. We still do a lot of business even though my contract with them ran up like two years ago.

You have produced a lot of tracks. Do you have a favorite? Is there any track that makes it into every setlist?

That’s like who’s your favorite child. And my setlists are never predetermined. I never sit down and say, “This will work”. I just decide what the first song should be to kick everything off, then I go from there.

Who is Buraka Som Sistema?

They’re my favorite band from Portugal. Their EDM sound has like a sound blend of kuduro and breakbeats included. When they came to the states and performed at Coachella they had an incredible energy presence. I was blessed to open up for them on a two week tour. We had mad fun and they’re so cool. Check them out live if you haven’t.

How many stamps do you have in your passport?

I can’t count them all. I’m on my 2nd passport and it’s almost filled up. But since I’m counting the ones in here so far, I have 42 stamps in my current passport.

What’s next for DJ Sega?

I can’t even tell ya. My life is so unpredictable but it’s a lot of fun! More tours, more releases, and a more in-depth look at who exactly DJ Sega is. On the business side, hopefully a really good staff that can bring you my entertainment in ways that excels what I’ve already accomplished.

Thank you so much for doing this. I know you are a busy guy. In all of the interviews I do, I always give the artist the last word. Go.


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