LAMP Weekly Mix #170 feat. Donald Thump
This week we take a look at the local scene here in Southern California and tap Donald Thump as our Guest. The best part is that it is also his birthday yesterday! He’s served up a great mix for you all including his latest single that is featured as part of the Tribe Out West compilation that recently dropped. Mr PUZL got to ask Thump a few questions to give us more insight to this up and coming So Cal talent. Dive in and Enjoy.
MR PUZL: Welcome to our weekly mix series! What have you cooked up for our listeners this week?
Donald Thump: Thanks for having me, I’ve been a fan of LAMP for a bit! One of my favorite things about mixes vs club sets is that I get to play tracks that I rarely have a chance to play at the time slots I’m typically booked for. These are mostly new tracks from some of my favorite artists, and I mixed in a few of my favorite tracks that I have played in the last six months. The story starts off dark, deep and dramatic and builds along to a more playful place, and then we get dark with some bangers that I wanted to drop before they’re played out and stale.
MP: Congrats on your recent inclusion on the Tribe Out West compilation. What inspired the creation of your single ‘Infrared’?
DT: While I occasionally like to throw down a set like Adam Beyer, and started in the beginning playing funky, psychedelic tech house, I’ve recently been listening to a lot of Dubfire, Joseph Capriati, Layton Giordano, Adrian Hour, Olivier Giacomotto and other artists who balance melody and beautiful arps/chords over dark, dance-y basslines. With Infrared, you can hear me chasing that lighter bass line and percussion like you might hear from Pleasurekraft or Dubfire, with big sweeping synths that growl after the drop and into the break. I’m a sucker for the right kind of laser and “space” sounds and the arp that I made dicking around on midi ended up complimenting the rest pretty well. Sprinkled in some vocals at the end, and I kind of envisioned someone on the run or hiding from some extra-terrestrial soldiers on some planet made up in my head. That’s where the name came from, I pictured someone hiding in a foreign place lying still as the infrared light scanned the landscape.
MP: Speaking of producing, how did you first get started with making music? Who are some artists and labels that are inspiring your own sound?
DT: I’ve been making music my whole life in my head, my close friends have had to hear my remix tracks and freestyle funny lyrics over top 40 tracks forever. I started making music about 6 months ago once I joined up with Tribe Out West. Each of our artists has really unique skillsets, and almost all of these guys have had substantial experience producing on Ableton. They’ve been really patient and helpful in teaching me the basics and we have all the tools, samples and gear in the studio. My goal is to move into a bigger space to build my own studio so I can log more hours in the flight chair. Once that happens, I am really excited to see that learning curve speed up. It’s frustrating right now!
MP: You recently had a show at SPIN with your Tribe Out West family to celebrate. We’re going to be down that way very soon! How did it go? What were some highlights from the night? It went great.
DT: Spin is my favorite venue in San Diego and hosts all the best house/techno shows with members of the festival community. A bunch of lovey, free spirits enjoying proper music in a really big space. When I first started I had a goal of playing at Spin, and in the last 8 months I’ve been fortunate to play there on a whole bunch of amazing Friday and Saturday nights. I think you guys will love it, I will be there, and I am excited to be there a week earlier to play the Camp Charlie Unicorn Invasion on April 14th.
MP: Tribe Out West seems like a pretty tight knit crew. Tell us about the group. How did it get started and how did you first become involved?
DT: Sam Wild is the boss – he started the branding and building a studio in downtown San Diego. Memo Rex is a former rockstar/ band front man who joined Sam and Reid Strong early on and he certainly came in with the most experience with Ableton and music in general. Susio is one of my best friends who I credit, along with Mr. Smith (Techlepatic), for making my entry into DJing so much easier than most of my comrades.
I had heard of Tribe Out West and knew Susio was involved, and one night I went to see Jonas Rathsman at Bang Bang with Susio and he made me leave early. I got outside and met a couple of the guys and as I pouted about leaving early I arrived at the Tribe studio in a posh condo downtown. Everyone was so welcoming, I recognized faces and saw some of my friends. I ended up spinning and getting some love, and going b2b with Klatch and Modus, two dudes I looked up to in the scene, and when I took a break I realized the guy sitting five feet to my left was Jonas Rathsman.
Everyone in the Tribe Out West family is really talented, humble, and unique. In addition to Sam, Memo and Susio, we’ve got Mitch Dodge, Nicky Saponaro, and Pete Prado djing and producing music, and Michael Garnica is a huge part of the crew helping with marketing media, design, photography, buildouts, etc. when he’s not working on his clothing/lifestyle brand Posted.
MP: You’ve been involved with our friends at Techlepatic in the past. What originally drew you to their events and what lead to you starting to spin with them?
DT: Mr. Smith is one of my best friends and the guy who first got me into house music. He had a big year the year before I started, and credited a lot of that to the people he met at small camping festivals like Boogaloo. He met Massio and Loboman and clicked with them, and then he fell in love with Genius Loci in Baja Mexico. After months of hearing him talk about what he had been up to, I finally met Massio and Loboman at the first DirtyBird Campout where I had my Donald Thump debut, and they were just awesome. Guys with a ton of experience and respect in the community who have no ego and nothing but the best vibes. It’s a great crew, with Luis Miranda killing it too.
MP: I watched a video from your 3hr set in Iceland. That must have been a blast! What was the trip like and how would you describe the electronic music scene there?
DT: Wow, Iceland is f****** amazing. It’s a hot travel spot and I had wanted to go. I had an opportunity to play at their biggest house music venue Paloma and had an amazing time playing for those people. People in Iceland are ridiculously nice and happy. With 3 hours and an audience that had never heard the tracks I play, I had so much fun going through my favorites. These people danced relentlessly while 4 feet of snow blocked in all the cars outside, and they raged and encouraged me to go really dark and heavy in the last hour. House and Techno are the prefered electronic genres. I was surprised and stoked to learn that Icelandic hiphop is all the rage over there – you have to Youtube this shit – it’s pretty great.
MP: What have you got coming up next? Any shout outs you want to give?
DT: I’ve got Future Jack at Analog in San Diego on the 13th, Camp Charlie at Spin on the 14th, a couple festivals I am really excited about but haven’t been announced, I’ll be featured on Mystic Pete’s KXLU show on May 6, and a bunch of local shows at Omnia, Spin, Kava Lounge through June. Looking to get on the festival train as much as possible with my music.
Shoutout to my Tribe Out West and Techlepatic crews and the rest of the amazing support team, blood-related and otherwise, that I am just too lucky to have. Thank you guys for having me.
1. Township Rebellion, Marc Holstege – Aphrodite
2. Olivier Giacomotto – Le Cap Amended
3. Los Paranos – Madness
4. Laika and Strelka – Over Sea, Under Storm
5. Thomas Schumacher – Every Little Piece (Hot Since 82 Remix)
6. Adrian Hour – Want to Hear What They Hear
7. Idris Elba – Make it Bump (Andrea Olivera Remix)
8. Adrian Hour – Rhythm Cat
9. The Cubeguys – Psycho Killer
10. Thomas Schumacher and Victor Ruiz – Satellite
11. Ben Sterling – Donk Me
12. Riva Starr – The Basement Shit (Skream Remix)
13. Mark Knight, Rene Amesz, Green Velvet – Live Stream
14. Layton Giordano – Supernova
15. Oliver Huntemann, Dubfire – Agua feat. Xenia Beliayeva (Original Mix)
16. Joseph Capriati – Fratello (Dubfire remix)
17. Donald Thump – Infrared
18. John Acquaviva, Olivier Giacomotto, Thomas Gandey – Machine
19. Paul Ursin – Way Out