Change It Up Fans, how are we all doing? It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted a new show and for that I am sorry! However, to make it up to you the next two weeks (at least) are packed with new music and huge guests. Before I dive in to this weeks guest, I drop a couple of songs to get you in that early morning/late evening summer mood. I’ve got a remix of the Dillon Francis & James Hersey song, “Coming Over”, “Swear Like a Sailer” from the group Tep No, and the Krono remix of “Dancin” from Aaron Smith. As always, I bring to you my Chill Pill of the Week. This weeks Chill Pill comes from the producers Saxity. Given their name you can expect a lot of “sexy sax” in this incredible cover of the X-Ambassadors song, “Renegades”.
For my guest this week, we were so lucky to be able to get Brooklyn native, Nick Kohler better known by his producer name, N2N. Since his debut in October of 2014, few artists in the deep house scene have gained as much momentum as the budding New York sensation N2N. In just over a year, he has accumulated 4 million plays on SoundCloud and has had remixes of the Jackson 5 and Michael Jackson signed to Universal Records. He has been featured by prominent tastemakers, aired on Ministry of Sound Radio, and has been supported by industry staples Autograf, Sam Feldt, MAKJ, and Thomas Jack.
He just released a brand new original with Victor Oliver and Vicentini titled, “Barbra”, which if you listen closely samples the popular Duck Sauce track, “Barbra Streisand”. It’s a track I am sure you will be hearing in deep house sets around the world this coming summer. Check it out below…
As is tradition here at “Change It Up” we got an exclusive interview with the man behind the decks. Here’s what Nick had to say…
1. First off, tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How’d you get started in production and DJing? When did you start getting into Electronic music? Did you always want to be in music? Were you a DJ turned producer or Producer turned DJ, which did you start on first?
Nick: I’m originally from electronic music mecca Nashville, Tennessee. Obviously I grew up surrounded by music, but more folk and bluegrass (which I also love). My first introduction to electronic music came when I was 7 and my dad bought. Moby’s Play and Fatboy Slim’s You’ve Come Along Way Baby. I was immediately hooked. I started playing guitar and piano when I was 13 but didn’t blend my love of electronic music with my own writing til after I graduated from high school. I taught myself Ableton and sucked at it for very long time before I made anything worthwhile. So, I guess I was a producer turned DJ.
2. When did you first realize, wow this is something I could seriously pursue? What was like a big moment where that realization came to be?
Nick: That came much more recently. I’ve always dreamt of pursuing music as a career and I guess I was stubborn enough to keep working my ass off to make that a reality. I still have a ways to go but I started to see the realm of possibility in San Francisco last year when I sold out my first stateside show.
3. I saw that you have a record signed to Universal? What did it feel like when you finally accomplished that and what was the process kind of like?
Nick: The Universal story is a pretty funny one actually. My buddy Andie Roy and I made a remix of The Jackson 5’s ABC that went semi-viral on SoundCloud. Universal hit up my manager and basically said “we know you’re doing this without permission, but we like it and we’ll sign it anyway.” After a healthy 4 month wait, they finally released it as part of their ‘Remix the Classics’ compilation. I suppose it was validating that a label of that status recognized my work, but I’m thankful to anyone that appreciates the music I make.
3a. Are you working on any originals right now? I saw you just released the track “Barbra” which is sampled from Barbra Streisand.
Nick: I’m working on a LOT of original material right now. I have five songs in the pipeline that I’m really excited about. That’s all the information I can give, really… but be on the lookout for some killer collabs
4. When producing where do you kinda get your influences from or your inspiration?
Nick: I pull my inspiration from a lot of sources and apply it to different aspects of each song. I want to create music that’s unique, instead of following whatever formula is popular right now. I love the music coming out of Brazil and Australia, so guys like Vintage Culture and Cassian are pretty influential to me. I love jazz too, I think house music is in the same bloodline as jazz. If you gave jazz drums a bunch of cocaine, they would be house drums. Listen to the swing of a lot of percussion lines, it’s the same thing. I swing most of my stuff to death and I think people recognize that about me. Other than that, I try to make what I want to hear and hope other people like it.
5. Who are some of your favorite producers right now, both electronic music and non-electronic music? As well as some favorite tracks?
Nick: Spada is making incredible music. Very sophisticated stuff, it’s only a matter of time before he pops off. I love the Dirtybird and Enormous Tunes crews too. Mura Masa kills everything he touches and in.deed have been on a hot streak recently. I’ll go basic and say Chunky by Format B is my favorite track to play live right now. On the non-electronic side, everyone should check out Feral Fauna and their track Tincture. Unreal.
6. You are now playing all over the world. Where was your first international gig? Your favorite location to DJ at? Any places you really want to get to?
Nick: My first international gig was in China long before N2N existed. My best friend and I had a little duo and were fortunate enough to play some really cool gigs in China. My favorite one was in the middle of the bamboo forest where they filmed Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. They cleared out a section and put a stage / lights in it and bused people out to see the show. Really cool. I’d love to get back to Asia, probably Hong Kong, Bangkok, and Vietnam.
7. What are the plans for the next few months, you got a couple dates in Switzerland and Italy and of course Burning Man?
Nick: In two weeks I’m off to Italy for a short stint with my bff Deep Chills. We’re not playing in Switzerland, but pretty damn close to it. Villa in Lucca, Italy. Then we’re off to Oslo for a club gig on May 7. I’m playing Mysteryland back home in New York and I’ll probably make it off to SF and Chicago during the summer as well. I will, of course, be back at Burning Man to play some sunrise sets.
8. Back to Burning Man. The 4 hour sunrise set you did last year was absolutely incredible what was that experience like for you? Got anything special planned for this years set?
9. What was it like the first time you heard about someone like Thomas Jack or Sam Feldt playing one of your remixes?
Nick: It’s cool when anyone plays your music. I’m just thankful when any DJ spins one of my songs, it means they liked it enough to share it with more people.
10. 2016 looks to be a huge year for you? What do you want to accomplish and what are you looking forward to the most?
Nick: My goal is to hop on the festival circuit in 2016, so a lot of what I do this year will hopefully lead to that. I have a few really exciting releases that I know will help propel me to that goal, it’s just a matter of making it happen. Luck has a little bit to do with it, so fingers crossed. I just signed new management this week, I think that will help too. I’m looking forward to playing in new markets and sharing my love of music with more people.
11. Any advice for aspiring producers/djs?
Nick: You have to make sacrifices if you want to pursue what you love. I sacrificed a lot of my social life to sit at home and make music, and it’s finally starting to pay off. If you want something badly enough, you’ll work to achieve it. If you don’t achieve it, you don’t want it badly enough.
We really appreciate Nick aka N2N dropping us this guest mix and from everyone at Change it Up and The Musies we wish him good luck on what should be an incredible 2016 for him!