elektro exclusive Interview with CRNKN
Where did you grow up? I grew up in a super small town in New Hampshire. Literally the complete opposite of where I live now in LA haha.
Who were your musical influences growing up? Growing up, I was lucky enough to have parents that wanted to subject me to all kinds of music. So when I was little, (before I started to formulate my own opinions on music) I’d be listening to obscure shit from the 80’s like Talking Heads, The Eurythmics, and older U2 stuff. As I got older, I got hip hop as well as the other stuff I was into. So you’d find me listening to Jurassic 5, Nas, Dilated Peoples. Stuff like that.
At what age did you start to get into music? Ah man. I’ve been super into music ever since I was a little kid. I’ve been playing guitar for about 10 years now, so music has always been a gigantic part of my life.
When did you make your first track? I started writing songs on the guitar in middle school. But, in terms of EDM stuff, I wrote my first song sometime shortly after I dropped out of college. About a year ago.
Tell us the story behind your name CRNKN. I get this question a lot. Unfortunately, I don’t have a super interesting story for it other than my friends and I hanging out one day and I was just jokingly throwing out ideas and one of my friends yelled CRANKIN’. I was like, “Hey, that’s not too bad.” Ergo, CRNKN was born.
People like to break down artists into genre's. You have been labeled as dubstep and trap. Would you rather not be labeled? Do you care either way? Also, What are your thoughts on the term EDM. Gonna answer the last question first. EDM is cool, because it gives people something to call all of the genres without having to go into detail about them. A lot of time when I’m talking to someone’s parents or my grandparents or something, I refer to EDM instead of dubstep or whatever. As for the first question, I absolutely HATE genre definitions. If it’s good music, listen to it. If it’s not, don’t. People are super quick to define someone in a genre pool and I think it’s silly and dismissive. I make the music I enjoy while I enjoy it.
You are most known for your amazing remixes. How do you choose which song to remix? Uhm it’s a serendipitous process. Basically just randomly hearing a song, or stumbling on an acapella that has some sort of loopable / repeatable section. Then slowly going from there.
Who has been your favorite artist to collaborate with so far and who would you like to collaborate with in the future? I’m gonna have to go with UZ. He’s a great dude, and not only is he nice, but he works. Harder than anyone I know I think. So, when we work on something, I can expect it to get done & not toil into obscurity. Ya know?
What artist outside the dance music seen would you like to collaborate with and why? Hm. I would love to work with the RZA from Wu Tang, or Chali – 2na from Jurassic 5. Also maybe produce for Kendrick Lamar. Aside from hip hop, I’d love to write a guitar track with (or feature on one of mine) John Frusciante of the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
When you hear that such prestigious artists such as Flosstradamus, UZ, Diplo, Dillon Francis, 12th Planet and more have played your tracks, how does that feel? I mean more than playing my tracks, all those guys have become my friends. It’s pretty cool to call ‘em that too, because before I started producing you could have seen me at a show featuring any of them. It’s nuts to have the support of these guys that I really look up to.
If you were putting together a tour, what artists would you want to perform with? Well, I’ve really been wanting to put some sort of CRNKN + Crizzly run, Chris is a good friend of mine, and I think it’d be sick.
What are your favorite pieces of equipment to use? I don’t use a whole lot of equipment, both my live, and my production setups are pretty minimal. Having said that, you’d have to kill me to get my laptop out of my sight.
When can we expect original production from you? I’ve been doing original production the whole time. Had a free EP come out 2 months ago, and just started on a new completely non-hip hop EP.
What can we expect from you in 2013? You can expect 1 or 2 new EP’s. Lot’s of new collaborations, including a new one with UZ. I have a bunch of shows coming up over seas, and a bunch of really exiting US stuff. Hoping you’ll see me on some festivals this season as well. AH! It’s all so exiting. I’m stoked on 2013.