Exclusive interview with Jai Wolf
When did you first begin producing?
I first started producing in high school. I started off writing songs with guitar and violin and slowly learned to add electronic elements like synthesizers and drum machines. Indie/electronic is probably the best way to describe what I was making back then.
You started gaining recognition under your old moniker, No Pets Allowed. Can you tell us anything about why you decided to take on the new name Jai Wolf?
I didn't think I was being taken seriously as No Pets Allowed. I know a lot of people liked the name but it was almost embarrassing to tell people. I also think a lot about musical longevity and No Pets Allowed wasn't something I wanted to be remembered as in the future. I spent a lot of 2013 really unhappy with the name so I decided it was time to change it.
Your remix of Skrillex's "Ease My Mind" has really taken off, even gaining approval from Skrillex himself. How did you get the remix to him?
I actually met up with Stephen from Fight Clvb a couple months back through my friend Prince Fox. He used to do music videos and tour videos for Skrillex. We shared some music back and forth and a few weeks later I sent him an unfinished version of Ease My Mind. He liked it a lot and said to send the master when it was finished. When he heard the master, he said it would be a crime not to show Skrillex so he kindly forwarded to him.
Are there any other exciting remixes and/or new tracks in the works?
I'm waiting on some release dates for a couple of official remixes (can't say for who yet!) and I'm also working on originals which I'm really excited to put out.
Who are some of the artists currently influencing your sound?
I think sonically, Adventure Club and Seven Lions have a big influence on me - especially from a melodic standpoint. I'm all about making cinematic, pretty music haha. From a creative standpoint, I feel like I'm on the same wavelength as Kanye. Almost everything he does or says, I understand on a "creation" level. I don't know if that makes any sense. But I use his visions as a means to drive myself.
Being from New York, what are you favorite clubs/venues?
I like the Bowery Ballroom a lot. It's small and intimate so you can really feel the artist. Webster Hall of course is a classic place and probably my most frequented venue in the last year.
How about favorite NYC spots in general (restaurants, hangouts, etc.)?
I try to stay in the Lower East Side for food and drinks. At NYU, a lot of people were into clubbing at the Meatpacking district but that wasn't really my thing. I gotta shout out the 14th and 3rd halal cart though. I usually hit that place up at the end of a good night.
What are your plans for the summer?
Write music. And then write even more music.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
It's tough to say but man I'd love to be playing some larger festivals out there. EDC, EZoo, Coachella, a lot of others are all on my hitlist. I'd also love to produce beats for pop artists - Biebs, Ariana Grande, Rihanna etc.
Who would you like to give a shout out to?
I gotta just shoutout Skrillex for being such a huge inspiration - I actually got to see him play twice last week at Webster Hall and at Governors Ball. Dude killed it. And shouts to anyone who believes in me. Always appreciate people listening and coming out to shows - those people make everything worth it.