“If it wasn’t for MIDI I’d still be killing cockroaches.” Danny Daze reflects on past careers, high school proms and life advice from his grandmother.
I do not belong in a cubicle. I’d end up being that guy that throws his desktop computer across the room when I get upset. I live music.
If you weren’t making music what would you be doing?
I’d still be playing tennis. Trying to make it into the pro circuit. I’d be 50 years old still trying to play the circuit.
“I do not belong in a cubicle. I’d end up being that guy that throws his computer across the room”
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
It’s a pretty cliche one but actually works for me… “Go with your gut!”
What inspires you?
Lack of sleep, doing the complete opposite of what people expect, new gear you have absolutely no clue how to use, other DJ peers who are pushing the limits.
What’s the next big thing?
Going back to square wave oscillators.
What’s the worst job you’ve ever had?
Pest control. I used to kill cockroaches for a living.
How do you know when a track’s finished?
They never are. Every single track can be tweaked more. You just gotta tell yourself, “The label likes it as is? OK, cool, I guess it’s done.”
What was your last day job and when did you realise you could give it up?
I became a full-time DJ in 2007. I was working for the City Of Miami but I was going nuts in there. I’d work during the day then DJ three nights a week only to get two hours rest, then right back into that cubicle. Suddenly I started getting booked way more and decided to just go for it. Thankfully I’m still getting booked today.
Which song do you wish you wrote?
Frou Frou – ‘Let Go’
What’s the easiest way to make it in the music industry?
I hate to admit this, but… be social. Your music will go way further by simply being social. Your music becomes much easier to be heard. I’ll also mention try and make some decent music.
What’s the worst track you’ve ever released?
Probably some old remixes I did while trying to make money. Total pop remixing bullshit. It’s not one track, it’s probably 50 of them.
Recommend us a film.
Enter The Void. Gaspar Noe is a wild dude.
Recommend us a book.
Honestly, the last book I read worth recommending was probably a school assignment. All I read now are instruction manuals and all those “27 things that you won’t believe happened” posts on Facebook.
What or who is underrated?
Every single dope-ass resident DJ in Detroit.
What or who is overrated?
Money. I take health over money any day.
What is your greatest regret?
Not learning to play a single instrument. If it wasn’t for MIDI I’d still be killing cockroaches.
What one thing would most improve your life?
Having my mom’s house paid off so she can just chill. Worst comes to worst and I never get booked again, at least I have a room to sleep in and great internet.
What’s the worst gig you’ve ever played?
I can go on for years talking about worst gigs. I used to DJ anything thrown my way. I’d play at a McDonalds back in the day if they paid me in cheeseburgers. One that comes to mind was a high school prom I did, where the entire school started asking me for horrible music I didn’t have. I’m talking about 18-year-olds asking to play ‘Macarena’ and ‘The Electric Slide’.
“If it wasn't for MIDI I'd still be killing cockroaches.”
Collaboration: rich creative experience or pain in the ass?
That depends on the dynamic of the collaborators. I’ve had people over the studio who I immediately wanted out of the studio… Egos can definitely clash. There’s nothing better than seamless collaborating though.
If you could only listen to one more track, what would it be?
It’s post WMC… I’m in a Gary Jules – ‘Mad World’ kinda mood.
How do you relax?
This question just made me notice I don’t do things to relax. Last proper vacation I took was probably 15 years ago.
What one piece of software/kit could you not do without? Why?
My tape-saturated TR-808 sample kit. The TR-808 is the root of Miami.
Art or money?
Strangest place you ever wrote a track?
At 5pm on the 836 West highway in Miami. Huge car accident which tipped over a truck. I was stuck in traffic for seven hours. Just pulled out my computer and used the AUX cable into my car speakers.
What’s your single biggest frustration in the music industry?
Politics. If I wanted to get into politics I woulda gotten into politics.
What’s your favourite label? Why?
What’s the worst thing about making music?
Forgetting to eat. Genetically, I’m supposed to be 250 pounds, but because of being in the studio 16 hours straight without a sip of water, I tend to lose weight during the weekdays then gain it back at DJ dinners.
What’s your motto?
Lately I’ve been trying to live by something my grandmother says: “Disfruta tu vida.” Enjoy your life. I’m pretty obsessed with this music thing and forget to sit back and enjoy it.
Tweet us a tip. What’s the best production advice you can give in 140 characters or less?
Record yourself tweaking! Re-route your digital synths and record yourself turning every knob possible. MAGIC!