Q&A With DallasK plus BLACKMAIL

Producer DallasK has been one of my favorite electro manufacturers for years. This young LA based producer / DJ has been mixing tracks and producing hits since before he could legally purchase a pack of smokes. Now in his twenty-somethings he is teaming up with hard hitters like Henry Fong to bring us chart topping anthems like recently released “Blackmail”.

Dallas is a very ambitious member of the music industry and has been working very hard at establishing himself as an integral member of the community. I was introduced to him on New Years of this year and we got to talking about this and that and what I noticed is that even though it was new years, and everyone was there to party, Dallas was there to do work. This type of mentality is what I look for in an up and coming artist, not someone who is there to ride the party until the fade out, but someone who is trying to make an imprint and last. I connected with Dallas and asked him a few questions, check it out!

Can you tell us a little about yourself to begin with? Let our readers know where you come from and what music genres raised you into the producer / DJ you have become?
More after the break…
I’m 22 years old. Michigan born but raised in Orlando, FL. My musical background is pretty diverse, my mom always surrounded me with current Pop and my dad liked Classic Rock. Personally I was really into dance music from a very early age around 9 or 10. I saw people like Fatboy Slim and Paul Oakenfold and begged my parents to buy me turntables but they wouldn’t go for it. Then around high school I picked up a guitar, started playing in bands and thats how I got my start into creating music. Then from there I heard the resurgence of electro in 2006-8 with groups like Boys Noize, Justice, and the whole Ed Banger crew and knew that electronic music is where my heart was.
If the music you like to play live had a flavor what would it be? Color?
Well ideally I’d never want a set of mine to be one color or flavor, I try to span different feelings and emotion. But maybe something like Blackmail would be that, Black and Sour, and a more uplifting track like Alienz might be sweet and red or maybe pink.
What was it like working with Henry Fong on the new release “Blackmail” that came out yesterday? Did you guys flow pretty good together, were there any artistic conflicts?
I’ve known Henry for close to 4 years now. I was actually with him the first time he ever opened up Ableton and was like “alright how do I make stuff”. Blackmail was made over the course of the last year I think we started it April 7th of 2013, so its been a tedious process for sure. I’m sure there were some minor changes we disagreed on but the reason we made a track in the first place is because we do have similar visions.
“Blackmail” has a very aggressive feel to it, a real big house wall shaker. Was there a certain venue or crowd you both pictured playing this for?
I always like to envision my tracks played for the biggest crowd possible, so you know.. Festival Mainstage. The cool thing about this record though is that Henry sent it to Rob Swire very early on, so before we could even play it out, Knife Party was playing it at EDC Vegas, Red Rocks and then Henry and I both saw them play it at Hard Summer last year which was awesome.

If I ordered you a pizza, what would you want  on it.
Chicken, Bacon, and Pineapple. Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!!
You come from the left coast, but your sound is very fitting for the crunchy electro clubs like Webster Hall in NYC. Where is your favorite venue to play? Where do you think your biggest following live is and can you tell us one unique story about a venue, like a crowd that surprised you or a crazy rider fulfillment?
I was raised on the east coast so we got alot of the first exports from New York. Also being close to Miami helped, not to mention Orlando it’s self was a huge Mecca for dance music in the late 90s and early 00s. I think my favorite venue might be Webster Hall, or Avalon in LA. Those were just two of my first big shows so they hold a special place in my heart. But they’re also always CRAZY so that helps.
I just wrapped up a tour with Adventure Club a couple months ago and there were a couple crowds that really surprised me. My favorite from that tour was definitely Orlando, not only because it was a hometown show, but it was all ages and just the rowdiest bunch of high school ravers I’ve ever seen. On that tour we also got a bunch of nerf guns on our rider and started shooting each other from the crowd or backstage while we were playing. Needless to say that got out of hand fast
What production equipment do you like to use to create your sounds, any cool plug-ins that youve landed on you might want to share with our readers? Djing live MIDI, CDJ, Vinyl, cow bell, which one are your personal favorites?
My DAW is Ableton but I’ve scoured the internet for years trying to find the best plugins. I’ve learned that mastering any one synth or plugin will make you better than if you have a thousand plugins. That being said I use sylenth alot, as well as many vintage synths that have been digitized for us modern kids like the Arturia stuff.  Live I use CDJs, I can DJ on basically anything but to me CDJs are the pinnacle of the “feel” of DJing, coupled with technology. I love em!!
Any upcoming gigs that you’re really pumped on playing? Any festivals we will be seeing you at?
We have a couple things lined up but nothing I can really get into right now 😉
If you could ask a music blogger anything what would it be?
How do you deal with your promo inbox???????

Follow up: Google mail has a great filter system 🙂

Make sure to follow DallasK to keep up with all his new tunes and showcases!