Been really looking forward to sharing this week’s mix with everyone. Born and raised in Newport Beach the so cal native is going to be one to keep a very close eye on. VNSSA has been on a meteoric rise this year with several releases covering labels such House of Hustle, Sweat It Out, Psycho Disco and several others. Receiving well deserved support from a pretty solid and well respected bunch of producers her versatility and ability combined with an insane work ethic have been paying dividends. I personally was able to catch her opening set at Dirtybird Campout a couple months ago and all skill aside, she has plenty of it, one of the things that stands out the most for me is her selecting skills and she brings it in full force for us this week for LAMP. Your gonna dig this one. Enjoy while you dig into this weeks Q & A with VNSSA and PZB
PZB: Hi VNSSA and thank you for putting together a mix for us this week. Just to get us started what do you have in store for us this week with your mix?
VNSSA: Some new stuff. Some old stuff. Some unreleased stuff.
PZB: I was fortunate enough to catch your opening set at Dirtybird Campout in early October. It was an incredible set and a great way for myself personally to get the festival started and from the the looks of it for everyone else too. I can imagine because I was there but its always nice to get the artists perspective of the experience if you don’t mind elaborating on it for those that couldn’t be there in person?
VNSSA: I was the very first act. Friday at 12:30pm. I was really scared no one would show up. I thought half the people would be sleeping because they partied too hard at the pre-party Thursday night, and the other half would be trying to get into the festival. But I was wrong. Not only did a ton of people show up, they were ready to rage! Claude VonStroke came up to me while I was djing and told me that he’s never seen so many people at an opening set in all of Campout history. So I just about died when he told me that. The crowd was so energized and it was such an amazing experience to get to set the vibe and play my favorite festival with all my favorite djs. I still feel like it was a dream.
PZB: 2018 has been a really great year for you so far and appears to be going strong with a recent release with Danny Kolk, “Animal” for Tons & Tons Records this comes on the heals of releases from Psycho Disco, Sweat It Out, Strangelove and a few others. The pedigree of other peers that are supporting your music is off the charts. What inspired you to go from DJing and get in the studio and start pumping out these tracks?
VNSSA: I knew if I wanted to play bigger shows and festivals I had to start making my own music. I’ve had the opportunity to collaborate with so many talented producers and it has really helped with the learning process.
PZB: Your output has been impressive this year. It all started off though with your debut release with House Of Hustle a superb label that has a great resume of artists that you are now deservedly a part of as well. How did that first release come together and how quickly after that were you on to your next release?
VNSSA: My friend Josh aka Fantom Freq hit me up to colab, and he actually really pushed me to stay on top of it and get the track finished. He’s a super talented producer so it was really easy working with him. I’m constantly working on music so I was probably already working on my next release before this one was even finished.
PZB: You grew up in the surfer community of Newport Beach. I am a little familiar with the scene down there and you might not expect it but there has always been a pretty vibrant underground house scene in the area. Who and what were some of the musical influences you had growing up in that area?
VNSSA: Growing up in Newport I went to a lot of Indie rock and Metal shows. So a lot of my influences don’t exactly come from dance music. But once I started going to dj shows I was very inspired by all the local talent. A lot of whom have taught me so much about djing and electronic music throughout the years. Djs like Torosbros, Wet Hand Dan, Khoizilla, Daniel Minaya, Rockberry, Patrick Dylan, and Dangerhouse have all been big influences in my djing and music career.
PZB: Have you always been a musician or is it something you picked up later in life and at what point did you decide that music was going to be your path?
VNSSA: I’ve always been a musician ever since I was little. I started playing the Cello when I was about 7, then switched to clarinet in jr high and joined the school band. Later on I picked up guitar, ukulele (self taught), and I also took piano and drums lessons for a few years. I always knew I wanted a career in music I just wasn’t sure what. I played drums in a few bands in the early 2000’s but realized after a while that it just wasn’t working out. I started going to dj shows and decided that’s what I wanted to do. I wanted to be the whole band. Not just the drummer.
PZB: Our industry is constantly going through changes, and we as artists are competing for ears with so many others out there. On the flip, listeners are bombarded and overwhelmed with the amount of music out there. How do you try to connect with your audience, and what do you feel helps you stay relevant?
VNSSA: I feel like my taste in music is always evolving. For me it’s not exactly about “staying relevant” it’s about staying true to myself. I play music I love.
PZB: When you sit down to make a track, what are some initial things you always do before getting started? Do you usually have something already in mind before you set out to start crafting the song?
VNSSA: Its always different. A lot of times I’ll have something in mind because I’ve just heard something that inspired me. But I always make sure I have everything I need at my finger tips and put my phone in a different room as to not be distracted.
PZB: To be constantly making art is a difficult and taxing endeavor. When you’re stuck and cannot seem to get out of a creative rut, what do you do to get inspired?
VNSSA: I listen to stuff that ISNT dance music. I go outside. I go to a show. I try not to force creativeness if I’m drained because then I usually make stuff I hate, which puts me in an even bigger rut.
PZB: What has been you favorite moment of 2018 so far?
VNSSA: Playing the Dirtybird Campout. 100%. And also getting to play the family set right after my good friend Omnom and right before the legend Justin Martin. I also got to play a really fun impromptu b2b with Justin Jay, so that was definitely a highlight as well. It’s hard to pick one moment because 2018 has been filled with so many great ones.
PZB: Is there anything else coming up in your world that we should know or you want to tell us about that we should be keeping an eye/ ear out for?
VNSSA: I’ve got a new track coming out with my girl Kendoll on New Noise (Dim Mak’s sub label) 12/11, and a track with my homies Walker & Royce coming out on Hot Boi Records early February.
PZB: That sounds amazing We will definitely be keeping an eye out for those. Thank you so much for your time and the incredible mix you put together. Please keep us posted on any other future releases and catch you soon.
VNSSA: Thank you so much for having me!
Metro Area – Miura
Giom, Andrea Rais- Discotheque
Worthy, option4, Leela D- Workin’ feat. Leela D
Brodinski- Let The Beat Control Your Body feat. Louisahhh!
CamelPhat, Solardo- Accelerator
Go Freek- Love is the Weapon (VNSSA Remix)
Elderbrook- Capricorn (Claude VonStroke Extended Remix)
Duke Dumont- Runway (MikeQ Remix)
CamelPhat- Drop It (Mason Maynard Extended Mix)
Lil Kim- The Jump Off (Sweater Disco Remix)
Claude Vonstroke- Make a Cake (Dashdot Remix)
Dom Dolla- Take It (Wong Remix)
DONT BLINK- COME ON UP
Tiga & The Martinez Brothers- Blessed (Dirty Mix)
VNSSA will be playing Nov 30th in Koreatown. Click the link fast I think tickets are almost gone for this one!