DJ Rob Kwik on How His New Mix Will Induce "Eargasms"
As a whole, DJs have a tendency to be rather boisterous, rowdy and blowhardy lot, particularly when it comes to self-promotion. Not so with local DJ Rob Kwik. Truth be told, he's a fairly laidback and chill cat who rather Zen and tends to let his music do the talking for him.
DJ Rob Kwik
So it only seems natural that the 30-year-old selector's tracks are firmly in the subdued vein and are hewn from such genres as glitch-hop, downtempo, and broken beats (his favorite EDM style). Kwik's mixes are anything but, rocking a subtle and slow burn that builds to a powerful climax and, in his opinion, create "eargasms" for the listener. That includes his upcoming "ElevAtion MiX," which drops next month and his guest DJ appearance at next week's LayLow session at Bar Smith.
Kwik described his mixing philosophy for us during our recent chat with him, as well as his feelings why club gigs are better than raves and desert parties, and other topics.
Name: Robert James
AKA: Rob Kwik
Genres: Breakbeat, drum 'n' bass, dubstep, glitch-hop, drumstep
What do you dig about the genres you spin?
I love broken beats. They make me move and want to dance. I play music that is hype and makes you wanna get up and get down to the vibration and bass. Bass and drums are essential to any beat. Broken beats keep it interesting.
How did you get into the DJ game?
I was involved in hip-hop since 1993, starting with graffiti, breakdancing and then onto the turntables. I have always had a love for music. Bought my first Technics in 1996. I started spinning in 1997. I started in the scene out in Texas, moved to Arizona in 1998. First DJs I met was Nappe and DJ L3GO. They inspired me to get better at mixing and scratching. My first gig in Arizona was in 1999. I'm self-taught. I was always fascinated by the old school DJs cutting and scratching [and] I wanted to DJ and scratch also.
How hard was it teaching yourself?
It took a lot of practice and patience. I would practice everyday for at least four hours. It took me about three months to get my first mix. I just figured out how the decks work and had to adjust my ear to pick up the mixing. One day it just clicked and I mixed my first two records. What an amazing feeling. I would also analyze other DJs to see how they mixed records. It's all about the transitions, make it smooth and its all good.