by: James Rockefeller Gray
ReLIVE IMAGINE 2015
Exclusive interviews with MARTyPARTy, Crizzly, and a whole lot more
Imagine Music Festival once again took the last weekend of the summer and ROCKED the pure living S@#T out of it. Imagine, in its second chapter, didn’t quite rely on a flashy line-up like it did in its previous year, they more focused on customer satisfaction. Not to say that the line-up wasn’t indeed on par with other festivals this season, it’s just that this year the line-up was more catered to the true Electronic Dance Music (EDM) lovers, it mostly consisted of who’ who of your favorite DJs and the EDM up and comer’s favorite DJs. People that came to Imagine came ready to party hard. Girls, Fire Performers, Mermaids, bubbles, confetti explosions, My assistant (Duru Cisal) rocking it out on stage with 12th Planet in front of 2,000 people, LUCY and MOLLY, Turkey Legs; an exclusive interview with Artist/Producer MARTyPARTy (Don’t Call him a DJ!)
Imagine 2015 was like a better sequel to an Oscar winning film.
The festival fashion at this years’ IMF was incredible. It nearly gave Coachella and Electric Forest a run for their money. The year before not that many people were dressed up. This year we had everything! There were fairies, the beautiful tie dye clothes, A LOT of Bikinis, nudity, lions, a spaceman (me), and ever thing you could possibly imagine (get it?) in between.
MARTyPARTy is known in the industry as a master EDM producer. He is a pure example of your favorite DJ’s favorite DJ. But don’t call him a DJ. He hates that word, he is not a DJ, he is a producer. He only plays his original tracks. I was able to chat with Marty on the phone to ask him about his experience at Imagine, his plans for 2016 with his project PANTY RAID, and a lot more.
James Rockefeller Gray (JRG)
JRG-Were you able to catch any of the acts at Imagine?
MP – I spent Saturday and Sunday at the festival – amazing spectacle – loved The Glitch Mob – their show is pretty sick – loved Ape Drums before me – he killed it in the sexy zone – saw Brillz his outfit was rad af.
JRG- What was a moment at Imagine that stands out?
MP- Playing to a sold out Masquerade with Griz at the Saturday afterparty was cool – raging on the platform on main stage was sick hanging with all the artist homies – watching the Amazonia area fill up when I came on was special too – my phone got stolen out my pocket when I dived in the crowd after my set but I got a new one and moved on – I was semi-pissed at that – who steals phones in 2015? Haha. Overall Imagine was absolutely stunning and I can’t wait to go back next year.
JRG- When and what made you decide you wanted to become a DJ? (Could you explain some why you do not like the word DJ?)
MP- I never wanted to be a DJ – to me a DJ collects music and plays it as if it was their own – I’m not into that at all. I am a musician and I started producing music because I wanted to make my own sound. I’m not really into fame and being the cool guy, I’m more about inventing new dance moves, making unforgettable mixes live, and delivering my songs in a professional presentation that makes people go nuts or touches their emotions as deeply as I can. I prefer the word artist to DJ, I am no different to a guitar player or singer, I go on stage and play my music, an original experience, and my fans know and love that about me.
I wanted to make a new electronic music in 2005. I wanted to make hip hop beats that stood on their own without rapping. I called it synthetic hip hop, then purple, now I call it MARTyPARTy music. The whole industry followed and invented genres to differentiate the sound from the mainstream genres, they called it breaks, glitch hop, trip hop, acid crunk, dubstep, you name it, now it’s called trap.
I always just wanted to experiment and make electronic music that was packaged as songs, with intros, verses, bridges and outros, had no vocals, and was not steady beat. I’m still doing the same thing as when I started, I’ve released over 300 original compositions. I’m always writing music. I’ve learned how to perform my music really well, and love to dance with intensity and motions to bring the music to life. I guess that is the part they call DJing, but to me its just performing my music.
JRG- Where do you see the future of EDM?
MP-The EDM bubble has been inflated to the max, it is becoming too expensive for the kids to buy a ticket and to experience a good range of music, the costs are too high, music has become a business, not an art. I’ve seen this before in the software world in Silicon Valley. It starts with innovation and creativity, then everyone jumps on board to make money off it, it over saturates and quality goes down until it is undesirable, then it bursts and the money people leave for the next thing, and the music fans learn to discover music for themselves and become less enslaved by what they are sold and exposed to. I am excited for the implosion and hate that kids are so exploited. But it is an economy and the cream will rise, and those with the best music and production skills that can adapt and are flexible in their sound will rise up. My time is coming soon, I am ready to rise. Bring it.
JRG-Who are some of your favorite EDM artists?
MP-I love artists that have composed music across genres with their own sound. Bassnectar, Tipper, The Glitch Mob, Skrillex, Mayhem, Brosafari, I like the dudes making the music. I love watching artists play their own creations – there is nothing better than seeing the face and body movements of a artist when they drop their new creation on a big system for a crowd, it’s the best thing ever!!!! We are a small group of engineers that actually MAKE the music you hear. It is super hard to compose an original melody, an original sound, an original syncopation, with an original arrangement and mix it down and engineer it professionally for the stage, and then have the balls to actually drop it live. That’s where I live, on the computer, in the software, on the cutting edge of music technology. I’m a geek that makes audio files and plays them live.
JRG- What’s up with Panty Raid? What do we have to look forward too?
MP- PANTyRAiD is coming alive in 2016 after a 2 year break while The Glitch Mob absolutely killed the game. I’m so proud to be associated with those guys and now Josh and I get to take the sexy, hip hop vibe on the road. We have written the 3rd album and I’m in Los Angeles in October finishing that for global release and touring 2016. Big things for the raid.
Fan- He is big on cooking and post lots of snaps of him doing so, what is MP’s favorite meal he prepares?
MP-I love to cook – for me cooking and composing music are the same – lots of creativity, experimentation, practice and CONFIDENCE. I’m in the lab in the kitchen and in the studio, always mixing different things you would not normally see done. That’s just who I am, I’m a mad scientist in the kitchen and in the studio I only eat fresh ingredients, no bottles, cans, boxes or anything with a barcode I try avoid. I try and pull a handful of fresh vegetables and a protein out the fridge every day and find new ways to cook them to keep their freshness and to invent new culinary concepts. I’ve been going on a trip trying to make common meals from scratch. I make my own mustard, mayo, ketchup and bread and make my own Marty burger. Haha. I eat a lot of fish, love chicken wings, BBQ and soups. Anything that’s healthy and fresh, but tasty and fun. Just like my music 😉
Fan-Will the famous Electric Forest wig be making another appearance?
MP- Def! I sported that blonde wig back in the day and I pulled it out for EF. Fans were digging it. I’ll def grab the blonde and other wigs the next go around. Always keeps the mystery and makes me into a mad man when I perform. Bringin’ the hair looks back!!! Lez go.
My Assistant/BFF, Duru Cisal, somehow made her way on stage during the 12th Planet’s set.
Nick Faulkner and Chanel C Corpuz
Nick Faulkner is now an IMAGINE MF legend, after a long day partying in VIP, he managed to get on stage during Dada life’s set, and sprayed the crowd with liquor. He was soon tackled by a group of security guards, don’t worry he’s still alive. Chanel C. Corpuz rocked the stage out when she danced in front of thousands of people during CRIZZLY’s set. It’s safe the say these two imagineers got TUNRT UP!
If you wanna get crunk you gotta party with CRIZZLY… the 24 year old CRUNK superstar based hailing from TEXAS. His set at IMAGINE had girls talking about it for weeks on social media. He tell us what he thought of Imagine and his future projects.
JRG: How does Imagine compare to other festivals? Did you get to see anyone else’s set?
CRZLY: Imagine is really cool because it focuses a lot on bass music. I actually did get to see some other performances, we were backstage just chillin’ and I had a great time! Definitely looking forward to next year’s event.
JRG: Where does the name Crizzly come from? Is it a nick name from friends?
CRZLY: I sat around saying my name over and over again until I realized Chris Lee sounds like Crizzly. The bear is because Crizzly is one letter away from Grizzly.
JRG: When did you know you wanted to become a DJ?
CRZLY: I’m not really sure if there was a real turning point for me when I decided like ‘Okay I’m going to do this for a living’. But I was always interested in music, I was always (and still am btw) really into hip-hop music and the beats that come with it. I got started in my hometown in Texas; I just got bored and was locked inside my house all day. I just started messing around on my computer and then I started making beats.
JRG: Who are you listening too? What new artists should we check out?
CRZLY: New artists is easy, I’m taking them with me on my upcoming ‘Low Dough Pizza Show’. They’re called Yung Nation and Zeke & Zoid. I’ve been hanging out with them like 24/7 over the last few months and they’re really talented!
JRG:. Do you have any collaborations coming up?
CRZLY: I’ve been working on a lot of new music including some hip-hop tracks with several Texas homies lately, such as Yung Nation.
JRG: Whats next on the Crizzly agenda?
CRZLY: Sort of gave this away [already], but I’ve got a headlining tour coming up which starts on September 29th so that’s going to be pretty awesome. It’s called the “Low Dough Pizza Show” because we are playing more intimate rooms with lower ticket prices. Just wanted to give something back to all the people that have been supporting me.
JRG: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
CRZLY: Still making music and representing Slice Gang. It’s been so amazing so far that I really don’t see a reason to stop doing what I do now.
Everywhere you turned at IMAGINE there were performers. Mermaids, STILT WALKERS, PYRO performers, and whole lot more were always doing something.
Special Thank you to Chris Lyda, Head of marketing of Imagine Music Festival, Duru Cisal, Cameron Prescott, Principal Photographer, and Tristan Baker and Chanel C. Corpuz for contributing.