A Sit Down With DJ 3Lau
3LAU is an American Progressive House & Electro House DJ & Producer best known for his hit record "How You Love Me" which has consolidated view count of over 11 Million views on YouTube.
"I make music because I want it to touch people on a very deep level. I dont make music to be famous. That is not a goal, and that has never been a goal."
Whats the funniest pronunciation of your name that youve heard?
Ive heard all kinds of crazy things. I think the funniest to me is when I hear people call me three-Blau. It makes me laugh because they were so close!
You started by doing mashups. A lot of artists who do mashups have a harder time making it and cant really become mainstream. What do you think made you stand out?
Yeah, I think its really interesting I use the idea of a mashup in everything that I do whether its with my style of production or its in my DJ sets, so Ive kind of taken that as the spark for my career. But thats definitely not my entire career.
Youre coming around at a very exciting time for electronic dance music and you have the opportunity to really leave your impression on the scene. What do you want to be known as and how do you want to be seen in the eyes of the community?
Im not really sure yet, but it is definitely an exciting time! I guess as my originals come out Ill know more, but Im definitely a big room kinda guy.
At the young age of 24 youre playing the biggest clubs & festivals all over the world. Is it a gift or a curse to be so successful at such a young age? How do you manage to keep your feet on the ground?
It is most certainly a gift and a privilege to play all over the world for so many people. I'm honoured and lucky to be able to do what I do. I'd like to thank my family and my girlfriend who have helped me stay humble, at the end of the day I'm just a kid like everyone else, who happened to jump into the crazy world of dance music before its rocketing popularity. I'm always very thankful to my fans and all of those who have supported me over the years.
How do you choose what songs to remix?
For the official remixes, a lot of times they reach out to me. For the RihannaDesperado and the Katy Perry "Bon Appetit" tracks, their teams reached out for an official remix. It comes down to timing, mostly. But I am also always working on different mashups for my sets.
Besides not focusing too much on artist labels, what are some other misconceptions that you think upcoming DJs and producers might have about the scene?
I think theres so many I think DJ co-signs. A lot of smaller artists think that co-signs mean everything, the reality of the situation is they dont at all. They help build credibility in an artists career, which is really, really great. You know what when youre smaller you have to do those things. I think it is important, but too many people spend too much time focusing on co-signs as opposed to focusing on making truly unique music. Ill say that 20 times in this interview, especially now, at a time when everything is really starting to sound the same. Its all about doing something different and doing something different that still sounds good. I think any smaller up-and-comer should focus on finding what they love to make, instead of mimicking whats working right now. All my future releases are kind of a combination of whats working right now and stuff that I think hasnt been made before. Ive spent so much time doing that, cause some of my releases in the past have been following trends. I think for the first time my future records are significantly different.
How do you compare the electronic music scene in the United States versus Toronto?
Ive always said that Canadian crowds know more than any other crowds, especially Toronto more-so than anywhere else, and Montreal as well. I feel like dance musics been big here for a little bit longer than its been big in the US, and so the crowds are more educated up here and its fucking awesome.
As far as software, I know that you use Ableton. Is that still your main software of choice?
Yeah, I actually use both Ableton and Logic, I always have. I do some things in one, some things in the other. But the truth is it doesnt matter what software you use, it really just matters how you use it. Lots of different people use lots of different things.
You play and produce melodic Electro House & Progressive House and youre well known for your mashups and your live sets that incorporate sampling. How would you describe your own music, what is distinct about it?
I really like to play and make lots of different musical styles. It's important for me to branch out as an artist and try new things. What makes all of my music distinct, and my live sets, is that I feel I incorporate an extremely large variety of different styles with everything I do, yet, there's always a common thread of musicality.
What inspire you to create music?
I pull inspiration from visual things, mostly. I see something beautiful or in a certain moment I hum notes in my head. Id call my style sonic, I pull sounds from bands and other DJs. But musically it all comes from my head and experiences.
What were the best and the worst gigs you ever played and what were the funniest things that occurred during any of your performances?
One of my favourite shows ever was EDC Las Vegas this past year, both because it's my home town and because the production is outstanding / one of a kind. I'm pretty lucky to say there have been few bad gigs I've played in my life, but the worst ones are usually bad because of the crazy travel more than anything else.
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