KORN frontman Jonathan Davishas scheduled the following DJ gigs in Mexico:
Oct. 20 – Guadalajara, Mexico @ Calle 2
Oct. 21 – Piacho Al Ajusco, Six Flags Mexico
Oct. 22 – Guanajuato Festival, Mexico
In an April 2011 interview with ARTISTdirect, Davis spoke about his roots in electronic music when he was growing up in Bakersfield, DJ-ing in high school and listening to KRAFTWERK in the mortuary he worked in later on. An excerpt from the chat follows below.
ARTISTdirect: When did you first start DJing?
Jonathan: I started when I was 16 years old. Growing up in Bakersfield, I worked for a sound company, and we used to DJ parties, high school dances, and shit like that. I started out with The Baka Boyz, Eric and Nick Vidal and Choc who were all on Power 106 in L.A. Then they went on to Miami. They’re huge radio personalities, but they’re amazing DJs. I grew up watching them and learning from them. I used to battle Choc all of the time. We’d roll up to the dances I was playing in and we’d get in these full-on scratch battles and do all of this fun stuff during the shows. Another DJ who used to be on Power was my boy DJ C-Minus. He’d come to my shows when I was DJing high school parties. He went on to Power 106 later. I’ve been in it a long time. When I got into KORN, that pretty much stopped for awhile. I decided I wanted to get back into it again.
ARTISTdirect: What attracted you to electronic music? In many ways, it’s similar to metal.
Jonathan: Yeah! When I got back into it this time, my eyes opened to a whole new genre of music that I had never really heard before because I was out of that scene for so long. Back when I was spinning, N.W.A. was just coming out, and there was all of this electro hop shit like Egyptian Lover going on. I was really into that. Now that I stepped into the club scene again, I’m trying to take everything in that I’m hearing like Steve Angello, Steve Aoki, David Guetta, Skrillex, Deadmau5, and all of these cats I’m listening to. I pulled myself into that world and now I’m really starting to get into it. My gigs are just bottle club DJ stuff at the moment. I go in and rock tunes. It’s nothing of my own, but I’m starting. I just got done doing a couple of remixes so I’ve been playing those in my sets. I’m working on more electronic music so I want to switch over and do sets of all my own remixes and electro music that I’ve been doing. I’ve also been doing dubstep shit with Excision, Datsick, and this kid Downlink. Those guys are from Canada. They’re big North American dubstep DJs. Then, of course, there’s Skrillex. I’m still working all of the bugs out but eventually I want to transform my set over to music that’s just mine.
ARTISTdirect: You’re blending heavy elements with dance music, and it’s definitely a fresh look for the genre.
Jonathan: There are people who are doing it. It’s just weird to see me do it because I’m in KORN [Laughs]. I think that’s what everyone’s tripping out about. It’s definitely different. Tommy Lee does his thing, and there are other guys out there. I love rocking a club, and I love just playing music and mixing stuff up. I’m not a scratch DJ. I go to a lot of clubs and DJs are just scratching shit up and playing songs for two seconds. I like playing songs, mixing them together, and making it one long enjoyable night with my set.
ARTISTdirect: Does DJing come from a different creative place than singing and writing lyrics? Are they two different thought processes?
Jonathan: Dude, it’s so fucking hard. When I get done doing a set, I’m just fucking drained. I’m matching BPMs and I’m counting out bars when drops hit. When I’ve got an eight-bar hook, I’ve got to go back eight bars and mix it and make it slower. All of this math and weird shit is going on in my head the whole time I’m doing my set. So, when I’m done, I’m fucking exhausted [Laughs]. It’s something different. I love being able to go in and play music I like. It’s so different from rocking live music in a band. I’m still exploring and learning the ropes. I’ve got a lot to learn. I don’t think I’m super uber great at yet, but I’m learning and writing. You never know what might happen!