Interview with Louisahhh!

This is an interview I did last year. I sat down with LOUISAHHH!!! during WMC in Miami on March 21, 2013 right before she hit the stage for a back to back set with Brodinski, Gesaffelstein and Monsieur Monsieur of Bromance Records. I really enjoyed speaking with LOUISAHHH!!!. She was very insightful and inspiring with her answers.

WOLFshoes: What made you want to start making music and at what point did you realize you wanted to DJ?

Louisahhh!: My dad worked in music when I was growing up and still does so even when I was like “My parents don’t understand me” and like super bummed and pissed and a teenager filled with angst that was always a point of connection and relation for me and my dad. Then, I grew up and started taking piano lessons when I was seven and classical guitar. I thought I wanted to be a jazz guitarist, which is like the nerdiest possible instrumentalist to be. Like jazz guitar! I was like going into college and instead of being a jazz guitarist I took up drugs and when I started kind of like going out, I had a bunch of friends who had clubs or party nights growing up in New York and so I would DJ just for fun and then a friend taught me how to beat match and all of the anxiety I felt when I was performing my music or playing instruments in bands was lifted when I was DJing. I didn’t get any performance anxiety. So I started DJing non-stop and started partying really hard and then I got sent to rehab and stopped drinking and using and it made me love music even more because that became the best drug.

WOLFshoes: What was the club scene like in New York?

Louisahhh!: When I first started going out it was mostly seeing bands and like the bands that were really fun at that point were like Ratatat, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Interpol, The Strokes and like seeing them at shitty clubs and then that kind of turned into like this party called Misshapes which was mostly like not dance music at all. They would play like Madonna’s “Hung Up” like 4 times in a night and it would somehow be acceptable but it’s how I met like a lot of people that are doing this today like all the Trouble and Bass guys I met there. I went to high school with Luka. It was like a really tight small scene that a lot of people have graduated out of in a cool way. It’s interesting to watch how dance music warped from like 2003, 2004 until now. Especially in America, it’s crazy to watch and actually I feel like I’m starting to play a lot of the same tracks I was playing in like 2006 because they are sounding relevant again. I really love the end of electro clash and what we think of as electronic music now.

WOLFshoes: Have you ever been to winter music conference?

Louisahhh!: Yeah this is like my sixth year.

WOLFshoes: Did you used to go to the panels at the actual conference?

Louisahhh!: No we’ve only ever played around at crazy parties. I feel like it’s a weird thing now that it’s split too. It kind of saddens me because are we here for spring break or are we here as a community of musicians and artists, entertainers and DJs. Who is this for? It’s a little bit confusing. It’s sorting itself out though.

WOLFshoes: If you could do a panel at Winter Music Conference what topic would you want to discuss?

Louisahhh!: I’m really interested in women in dance music and how do we better create a community that is not competitive, not caddy but really supportive, has more integrity amongst itself because I think that’s a hard thing. Sometimes I feel like we are often pitted against each other and then also I’m interested in how America is finding itself beyond EDM. Where’s the underground, this is what’s mainstream now and how do we cultivate a domestic scene.

WOLFshoes: What advice do you have for young producers?

Louisahhh!: I would say do something everyday for your art. What ever it is. If you’re not feeling particularly inspired it doesn’t matter show up for your work. Creative discipline is really important and if you’re not able to make a song that day, write. If you’re not able to write, draw. If you’re not able to draw, listen to music. There’s a very high rate of consuming inspiration and outputting work. Just keep making work.

WOLFshoes: Do you feel the electronic music scene is more welcoming to female producers now than when you first started?

Louisahhh!: I think there is an amazing group of really talented, really wonderful women internationally and that’s really exciting however I think it’s really up to us to be role models and to treat each other as such, as peers and to behave in a way that we want female fans of dance music to behave because you see so much groupie culture in the DJ world. It’s repulsive and upsetting. We don’t get it as much because men are terrified of the ego rejection that would come from approaching a female in a position of power I think in a lot of ways. We have to behave in a way that encourages us and supports each other. There’s a party in Paris called Girls, Girls, Girls that’s a really good example of that. Anna Lunoe, Gina Turner, Star Eyes and Jubilee are all doing awesome work here and it’s like let’s work together on this because it’s really disappointing to watch this weird trolling aggressively, sexual behavior and like especially in the rave scene like eww. So let’s act like ladies.

WOLFshoes: Your new EP is coming out in April and what can we expect from that?

Louisahhh!: It’s something I’m so excited about. I’m proud of. It’s been a long time coming. I hope you love it as much as I do.

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