In this interview with the talented DJ and music Producer byDJBLVD, we dive into the highlights and memorable moments of his musical journey in 2023; from his favorite track of the year to awe-inspiring events, personal highlights, and unexpected sources of inspiration, byDJBLVD shares insights that offer a glimpse into his creative world.
What was your favorite track or release of your own from 2023, and why?
My favorite release of 2023 by far was “The Genius is Me,” released under the London-based label Pogo House Records for many reasons. Producing the track was my favorite part — I cried when I finished the song because I loved it that much.
On top of that, it was my most successful release of the year, with immense support from so many DJs, radio stations and Traxsource itself. It was the first time in a while where I felt 100% proud of something I produced and the outcome.
Name one festival or event you performed at, or attended in 2023 that left you in awe of the crowd’s energy.
Back in April, I performed alongside my organization, DJs for Climate Action, at our Earth Day celebration at the House of Yes in Brooklyn, NY, and it was terrific. It was the first time in a while that I was booked to do an Electronic-only set, and to do it alongside my family and idols, Soul Clap, Sammy Bananas, Rimarkable, and others, was a blessing.
The crowd was everything, and they didn’t stop for a second. They went all the way until 4 AM, dancing the night away, cheering and showing genuine appreciation — definitely my most memorable event of the year. We’re back this April. I can’t wait to groove with everyone again.
Which collaboration with another artist in 2023 stands out as a personal highlight?
Ironically, 2024 is the year I’m forcing myself to branch out and do more collaborations with artists. I did one collaboration this year with my childhood friend, June Prod. We used to play in the Jazz band together as kids, so to come together as adults and producers and create our track, “The Message,” was a highlight of the year.
The song’s reception was also excellent. We received a lot of love from Europe, including much love from playlists over in Berlin and Amsterdam. For a first-time collaboration, I was extremely pleased. We have another one in store coming to y’all soon!
Can you share a memorable moment from a fan interaction or message you received in the past year?
A fan messaged me not too long ago, letting me know that he recently came to one of my sets after a long depression spell. He decided to get out of the house and get some fresh air, hopefully meet some folks and bring a smile to his face. He later shared that he had planned to go down a dark path that night potentially, but going out saved him.
He told me how infectious the night was, from the music to the energy in the building, and how he hadn’t had that much fun in a very long time. I won’t go too in-depth, but I cried when he shared this. I hope he’s doing well — he’s one of the strongest people I know, and I wish him nothing but the best.
What’s the most played song in your personal music library from 2023 that wasn’t your own?
What a fantastic question — I love to show my favorite artists some love. One of my favorite songs I’ve dropped in nearly all my sets this year was “My Life” by Sebb Junior. Man, the bass in that song is INSANE. It never fails to make crowds go wild when it hits.
I have so many crazy transitions into and out of the track that I can always keep the audience guessing what’s coming next.
Tell us about a unique or unexpected source of inspiration that fueled your creativity in 2023.
Ironically, one unexpected source of inspiration this year that fueled a lot of my creativity was listening to the genre “Mallsoft.” Mallsoft (mallwave) is a Vaporwave subgenre centered around shopping mall music. Think 80s shopping mall or elevator music. It’s very minimal, typically has elements of Jazz or heavy instrumentation and is Ambient.
It’s oddly calming, and every time I listened to it, I dialed into every single noise I heard. I cycled through a set of about 15 1-hour mixes this year, where I overanalyzed every track and broke apart each song’s key, musical elements and ambiance.
Listening to these mixes helped set the mood for production and spark Jazz-influenced inspiration.
Name one piece of gear or software you couldn’t live without in the studio last year.
One piece of gear I couldn’t live without in my studio this year would have to be my Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro’s. I read so many reviews about how amazing the headphones were for music production, and when I finally got my hands on a pair, they didn’t disappoint.
For all producers, you NEED these headphones. I haven’t picked up any of my other ones since buying them.
Share a favorite memory from a behind-the-scenes moment while touring or producing in 2023.
My favorite behind-the-scenes moment, or moments, while producing in 2023 is my behind-the-scenes bloopers. The number of times I’ve made crazy noises out of happiness, fallen asleep while making music, talked to myself angrily out of frustration, and stared at the screen aimlessly is insane.
I should’ve recorded all of it — it’s fun to think about the process behind a song and what it took to bring it to life. Maybe I’ll start recording that in 2024.
What’s the most meaningful lesson or takeaway you gained from your experiences in the music industry last year?
My most meaningful lesson I’ve gained from my experiences in the music industry this year, is to remember to take breaks. We can sometimes drive ourselves crazy by striving for perfection as artists. We’re constantly chasing and focusing on putting out that next “banger,” we forget to live in the moment, go outside, touch grass, and breathe.
Take care of your mental health; spend time with family, travel, exercise and step away from the computer. I promise your work will improve when you give yourself regular breaks.
If you could sum up the essence of your musical journey in 2023 in just three words, what would they be?
Resilience, Triumph and Passion.
We thank byDJBLVD for sharing a look back on his 2023, a year filled with powerful releases, performances and important takeaways that will certainly serve as guide into 2024.
As he gears up for the new year, we wish him the best in his new projects, make sure to follow him on social media to learn more about his new releases and performances.