A Story About How Electronic Music Came To Be My #1 Obsession Click To Tweet
Now as you all know, I am a huge, die-hard fan of electronic music; which I think is apparent throughout my Youtube Channel. I live, eat breathe and sleep electronic music and I couldn’t possibly imagine a life without it. And this passion that I have for electronic music dates all the way far back to when I was only 5 years old. My uncle who (although he didn’t physically reside in Detroit) was a contributor to the Detroit techno scene in the late ’80s and early ’90s and actually introduced me to this genre of music. When I was a kid, my parents took me to my uncle’s house who was heavily into different things like comics, video games and anime, gadgets and a whole bunch of other stuff. He was just a big kid at heart. But what stuck out to me the most, is what still lingers in my soul till this day.
The first time I arrived at my uncle’s house, I heard this repetitive, 4×4 groove that I had heard for the very first time. I stumbled through the house to draw myself closer to where the sound was coming from, almost like a game of hot and cold. And when I opened the door to my uncle’s music studio, this is the very moment when my love for Electronic music all began.
I literally had no idea in HELL, what my uncle was doing and what he was listening to, but what I did know is that IMMEDIATELY once I found out the answer, that is exactly what I wanted to do in life. Plain and simple.
When I walked in he was Djing and spinning a widely known record titled “WindWalker” by The Martian which is a techno record released in 1995- which came to be the very first techno record I laid ears on.
As a kid, I could not possibly conceive or comprehend the music itself, I just started dancing like crazy and bobbing my head to the beat! But it brought about an intense feeling of joy inside me. A feeling that I wish I could put more accurately into words, but still feel till this day as an adult when I listen to a good techno record.
“Happy people hear the music. Sad people listen to the words”
Throughout my life, electronic music has not only provIded me with an abundance of joy and euphoria, but it has also provided me with mental stimulation and emotional comfort. During rough times in life such as periods of depression, many people tend to resort to things like heavy drinking, drugs, self-harm or even harm to others. Well for me, electronic music was the band-aid to all the internal scars. As a child growing up and having seen things that no child should see, I instead used Electronic Music to help me escape the reality and transcend to places of pure bliss. And I still do. It was the perfect remedy to patch up broken hearts. It was my drug when I craved that feeling of exhilaration. And I enjoyed the story that was told through each track.
At the age of 14, I had lost someone very close to me which completely shifted my focus since then. My uncle who started out as a DJ, is now in heaven teaching other angels how to DJ. Upon finding out about the news, I was hit so hard to the core and completely consumed with my emotions and sadness.
Although I felt very weak inside, this granted me with the engrossing and intense interest and dedication to pursue Electronic music and to define it as my ultimate dream in life. Most of my uncle’s studio equipment was sold off, but my dad let me keep the old-school, 4 channel DJ mixer that he used. The same mixer he used when he played the techno record for me back when I was 5. I still have it till this day and there is no amount of money that could buy it off my hands. And I mean that wholeheartedly. That’s how much the mixer means to me. And on my 15th birthday, my mother knew how serious I was about Electronic Music and Djing. So for my birthday gift, she bought me the Full Producer Version 8 of Fl Studio and the rest is history….
Since childhood, I have listened to literally thousands of Techno records. That is not an exaggeration. Most of my life has been spent listening to Electronic music. At times I feel like a human ipod for Electronic Music. I can mentally ring up any track in my head, and play it from start to finish. I tend to do this whenever I am in bored situations or when my surroundings gets very quiet. Over the past 2 decades, I have discovered soooo many talented artists who have all had a beautiful story to tell through their music. One of my most memorable experiences was attending middle school, and having a close friend of mine burning various techno CD’s for me to discover new artists and their music. Thanks to my friend, this is when I discovered my love for DJ Sets that lasted 1 hours, 2 hours or even 3 hours long. Whether it was a techno set, trance set, goa trance, etc.
Speaking of DJ sets, If you were to ask me, “What DJ set changed your life forever?”
I would automatically know the answer without hesitation. This is a DJ set that my friend burned to the first CD that he gave me. The DJ set was Tiesto’s live performance at Energy 2000. When I heard that for the first time, I knew in my heart that my love for Electronic Music would be a life long journey. My fondest memories were sitting in my mother’s car with my best friend just to play that set on the car stereo CD player from start to finish. and just be in “awe” the entire time….haha. I’m just thinking about it now…
During this time, I remember being VERY HEAVILY OBSESSED with trance music. If I could go in a time machine and find my iPod classic as a pre-teen, you would mostly find the classic trance artists during the trance boom of the late 90’s to early 2000’s. From the likes of Tiesto, Armin Van Burren, Paul Oakenfold, Paul Van Dyke, ATB, Ferry Corsten, Carl Cox, Sasha and Digweed, Signum, Cosmic Gate; I mean, this is just to name an ABSOLUTE FEW. There is probably well over a hundred different trance artists who I’ve listened to over the years.
Shortly after my discovery of various trance artists, I stumbled upon who would come to be my #1 musical influence and inspiration in Electronic Music of ALL time. Which actually was a re-visitation of an old vinyl record my uncle had. But so many years later, it happened by accident. I honestly don’t think there is another artist in this world who has amazed me with his work in such a way that I would become so damn obsessed with everything he releases.
I’m sure we all remember a program called Limewire back in the day. A time when you had to listen to the frustration of your router as you forced it to connect to the internet via DSL. Well, I remember on the shared computer in our house, I used Limewire to download all the music I wanted to my Ipod. But sometimes, Limewire had a tendency to download music that you actually did not search for. I didn’t know if this was a glitch, or maybe it was actually a misclick of some sort. But one day when I disconnected my iPod from the computer after syncing my downloaded music, I was listening to my music as I feel asleep and an unknown artist and song popped up on the screen:
I don’t know who the FVCK this Pryda guy is, but this song is AMAZING. I remember hearing this song and instead of falling asleep, I stayed awake to finish it out haha. Once the song ended, I woke up late in the night to get on my PC and search up the artist. And this is how I first re-discovered Eric Prydz and his music. What’s interesting is like I had mentioned before, my uncle had owned this physical record when I was a kid but I had forgot about it. Sure enough, listening to the song again so many years later was like unlocking a hidden memory deep down inside.
During my Junior Year of High School, I saved up enough money and bought my very first (mediocre) DJ setup that I remember very clearly. I’ll actually provide the picture:
It was 2 Stanton c324 CDJ’s and a Behringer DDM4000 mixer. Every single night I would come home from school and practice my ass off how to beat match 2 tracks together, and do cues and special FX, and volume levels and the whole 9 yards. Djing is an art form and there is nothing that amazed me more than the art of mixing various tracks together to tell a story and take the listener on a journey into sound.
Upon graduating from High School, something very interesting happened to me that shed light on the politics of record labels that I wasn’t really informed of before. It was a blessing and a lesson to say the least. But I learned a lot from it.
I remember there was a very popular local Techno Artist and DJ in my hometown who came across my tracks on ReverbNation. Well, he absolutely loved my tracks and found me on facebook via my ReverbNation profile. So he contacted me and expressed his deep interest in my music, and asked if I was interested in doing a skype call. So of course upon hearing this news, I was ecstatic and didn’t think twice about it. Well, turns out, this guy was actually the owner of a major Techno Label based in my city that signs the majority of the Techno artists in the area and it’s still around and growing today. Throughout the skype call he singled out and mentioned one of my tracks and felt that it would be excellent to add on the label, only if I was willing to change the ‘breakdown’ of the track. Even at the young tender age of 18, this in itself put a bad taste in my mouth. Although I was humbled by his kind words and interest in my music, I thought to myself, “I’m the artist, aren’t I the only one who knows how it’s supposed to sound?”
Interestingly enough, after the conversation ended I heard from or spoke to him again. Trust me, it was never out of spite whatsoever. It was one of those things that just came and gone. I just found a bit discouraging how someone would want to sign you to their label, in hopes that you would first change your music to the way THEY would want it to sound. I vowed and made a promise to keep releasing music the way I wanted it to sound without any judgment and wanted to come up with a way where I can provide myself with the freedom to do that. Well, as a result of this occurrence, I did a lot of research and with the help of some colleagues in the music business, two years later I established my very own indie label called “VycVYper Recordings” in 2012.
Over the past 2 decades, I’ve listened to toooons of Electronicic music across different genres. Techno, trance, house, tech house, goa trance, psy trance, drum & bass, progressive house, you name it. I’ve collected various 12″ records that I’ll share in future videos. I’ve also made tons of music myself, but have only publically shared maybe 10-15 tracks (many of which you can find here on my Youtube Channel) and those are older, even though I’ve made close to 100 little projects over the years. But I’m still going!
Djing is something that I would love to get back into and with the way technology has evolved today, Djing is ALOT more affordable and capable of grasping the concept. All thanks to things like Midi controllers and very user intuitive mixing software that makes this all possible. No longer do we have to rely on Spinning Vinyl or having to come up with the funds for expensive CDJ’s. But of course, there are many who still love the more olschool style of Djing which I think is amazing because I’d HATE to see it die out anytime soon (which it shouldn’t). Not to mention, alot of the equipment can be bought with all of these combined into one piece of hardware.
Well with all this being said, I hope to continue on with this long lived dream of mine and I hope to take it to a level that I can reach thousands, and even better, millions. I want to share my musical story with the world. I want to share my memories, my dreams, my pitfalls and rises in life through my music. I want to describe people, animals, and anything else that has been stored in the archives of my memory. I want to make music that invokes emotion and reaches out and touches deep within the soul. I want to make music that makes people spaz the fu*k out and go batshit insane as I play it in a club or a warehouse rave. And when I die, I’ll have a eulogy of music that people can remember me for. Just as every other artist in this world, both living and dead, has set in stone a eulogy for themselves. Every time I sit down and make music, not only is it a mental, aurial and visual experience. But to me, it is also a spiritual experience. My uncle watches over me and helps guide me throughout the music making process. And hopefully one day when I’m Djing in front of a crowd of thousands, he’ll be standing right next to me; the same way I stood next to him when I walked into that room at 5 years old, watching him do what he did best….
-Brandon Peoples (2017)