In a world that screams conformity, DJ Red Villain dares to be himself.
You sit and talk with some people, and you immediately detect the enthusiasm in their voice. True passion actually doesn’t have to be spoken in any formal language. In the inflection, excitement and tone of certain folk’s speech, that passion innately shines through.
DJ Red Villain is a clear example of said individual. It didn’t take me long to realize that the Atlanta-based DJ has a spark for music and life. Hell, music and life are one in the same for him. It is truly a breath of fresh air to engage someone that revels in defying life!
Who is DJ Red Villain?
Dj Red Villain is a DJ, producer, radio personality. I’m also the originator of Not So Bad Mixes. My overall goal is to make a change and be a difference in the EDM industry. Just want to bring my taste and vibe to the industry.
How long have you been DJing?
About two years now. I guess I’m a Youtube DJ. I’m one of the first of the breed to learn a lot of techniques from fiends and from Youtube. And I’ve just been growing from there.
Tell us about your ‘Not So Bad Mixes’.
It actually started off as kind of a joke. Originally when I started off doing my mixes, they weren’t that good. That’s how I got into learning techniques and decided if I’m gonna do this I need to get much better at it. Then, once I started really learning the craft, techniques, song selection, is the minute my mixes started to improve. So, people would send me requests on social media and I’d do my mixes. People started hitting me back and would say “You know what…this mix is not so bad.” Then I just took that and just ran with it! I don’t know why they expected it to be bad, but I appreciated them listening and giving me feedback.
So, that’s where the name “Not So Bad Mixes” comes from.
What are you working on currently?
Working on producing some tracks and getting more involved in the EDM scene. There’s the Not So Bad Mixes podcast I’m currently working on as well. And still getting booked for gigs. Everything for now is on my Soundcloud and Mixcloud.
Why do you do what you do?
Man, I know this may sound cliche’, but I really love music. And I’ve always told myself that I wasn’t gonna do the DJ thing. But, when I’d step away from it, I just couldn’t get it out of my system. So, just a true love for music is why I do it.
What was your “ah-ha” moment…when you knew this is what you wanted to do, professionally?
At the beginning it was more of a hobby…almost as a joke. Then, people started asking me “Oh, you DJ?” and it wasn’t long that I could answer them “Yeah, this is what i do!”
After I started putting mixes together and after so much research to be the best I can, I knew this is what I wanted to do.
You can collab on 1 project with 3 artists (dead or alive). Who would they be and why?
This is a really good question. I saw this and got excited! First I would say Joe Kay. His show on Beats 1 is so great. He’s got this soulful vibe and when he remixes a song he just brings light to it. Second would be Travis Scott. Not only for the trap feel, but his energy. Plus he’s kind of a weirdo, so that’s cool. I saw him live once and the show was insane. I would say my last one is Diplo. Most of the tracks he comes out with are just so innovative. Like Lean On, it was just so ahead of it’s time. The chords are beautiful in the song. He’s a big innovator. Whatever he touches is great.
Who are your influences in and out of music?
My first one is Steve Aoki. He work ethic is crazy! If you every get a chance to watch his documentary (I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead) check it out. He produces so tracks non-stop. The guy never sleeps. The next one would be DJ Khaled. He’s just one of those guys that knows how to make things happen. I remember, a while back, his brand was kind of falling. Before, he had everyone from Wayne, Birdman, Ross…but then his brand started falling off. It just dipped for him. Nobody heard anything from him. Then all of a sudden, next thing you know, he’s back twice as hard. It was almost like he never left. People like that, man. I’m just like Where do you get the energy to do everything you do?” The last one is Jay Z. He knows how to evolve. People made fun of his original style, but he’s adapted so well over time. At the end of the day he’s a business man. He has the ability to realize when the industry is going left, and he knows when and how to go right.
What / who inspires you?
As far as my show, Joe Kay, is one of my major influences. His Soulection podcast is on episode 300+ right now. Just watching how he started. This guy was like dirt poor man. A broken mic in his bedroom. He kept at it, finally got a sponsorship and never looked back. He’s the man. And P. Diddy with his business mind. He’s a master at keeping his brand visible. He’s always got his Revolt shirt on. Keeping his brand out there. People like that will not be stopped until they win. Another one if GG Allin. He’s a little off tempo, he was a rockstar. He’s actually dead now, and I wasn’t a big fan of his music. But, just the way he behaved, his ability to be raw an say what he wants to say with no fear. People like that can be dangerous, but you have to embrace them. They never let people catch up.
How has your music changed over time?
Now, I’ve learned to proper techniques. Before, I was just mixing songs together and hope it sounds good. Now, I understand the reason and how to make a good fit. Understanding how to look at and read a crowd. When I was starting out i would play music just for me. If the crowd wasn’t feeling it, I would just continue to play my favorite songs. At the end of the day, it has nothing to do with me. I’m just the General leading these people in this beautiful atmosphere. Whether that atmosphere is EDM, Trap or whatever, I get to lead them to feel it. It took me awhile to understand that.
What is your take on the lack of artist development within the industry and how do you think that ties in with the cut in funding of music and art in schools?
To me, especially for cats like me that are coming up now, the resources are there. If you want to do it, you’re gonna work on it regardless of what is taken from you. Awhile back, it was kind of like you had to go to school and be in debt before you realize you don’t want it. But, honestly, nowadays, there’s so much information out there for you to get, just read. Find, read it and take your time learning it. I feel like my production skills are nice, but I’m still trying to improve. Man, the tools are out there. Why go to school if you don’t have to? There are other ways to educate.
How do you Defy Life?
I try to make the most of it. I’m already different enough! I’m 6-foot-5. And I always get the “Aren’t you supposed to be playing basketball?” comments. And I’m just like you have to be brainwashed, bro. Not everybody wants to be that. I defy life just by being myself. This is what I love to do and live to do. This is it for me. Being real with myself is defying life to me.
Check out DJ Red Villain on social media an online!