DJ Dossier

DJ Tranzit on His Alter Ego, New CD, World Travels, and the Current Oversaturation of EDM

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What's new and different about your latest mix CD Crank the Volume? Well, I think the biggest thing on this mix series is trying to capture and translate my live DJ sets into the mix. Usually in my past mixes I focused a lot on starting off a bit slower and then building the mix over the full hour. Instead, I decided to come out of the gates more explosively like my DJ sets have been. Also this is the first mix where I have included an all original solo track "Str!ke" which comes out later this fall on Plasmapool Records out of Germany. You will hear a lot more scratching, beat-juggling, and turntable tricks in the mix like my live performances. So it's a little bit more raw than my usual mixes have been.

Your weekly Switch Sundays recently made its return to Scottsdale. Why did it disappear for a few years? It was just time for a break. We ran Switch for over two years. It was also right at the cusp of the whole EDM thing blowing up here. Plus, I was getting really into producing and wanted to put more time into that for a while.

Why did it return? After a year or so, I was asked to bring the night back at the Dollhouse, and everything lined up again so just decided it was a good time to bring it back. Switch has always been about exposing the great local talent we have here, and I've always been about showcasing these guys at Switch and using it as a platform to show this great talent to people who were open to hear and see it. With so many new DJs emerging, and with the scene blowing up the way it is, I thought it was just perfect timing.

You're opening for DallasK tomorrow at Wild Knight. Are you psyched or stressed about it? I'm stoked!

What's your favorite place to perform? I love DJing at Wild Knight. They have done such a good job of building a good solid EDM crowd. I've always been asked to play harder, even when opening up for headliners, which is always nice. It's usually the opposite, "We need you to tone it down a bit." I've been opening for headliners for over eight years in this town, and I've been taught to slowly build up a room and set up the headliner, but its nice that things are changing now, and the over all landscape is catering to a more heavier sound.

Should DJs go balls to the wall during every set, ever if its an opening gig? People expect it to be raging at the clubs the moment they step in, even if it's 10 p.m. I don't recommend every DJ do this when opening for headliners, there's definitely a fine line to doing it, you cant expect to show up and take that opening slot as your moment to show the world how great you are. It's not about you, it's about the headliner and the over all experience. So DJs gotta remember to play accordingly. I've built a solid reputation in this town over the years and clubs and promoters are a bit more understanding on the way I play and know what to expect so I think I have an easier chance of playing more aggressive sets now.

What else are you up to these days? At the moment [I'm] just focusing on this EP release, and more studio time and developing the alter ego more. I will be heading to Amsterdam Dance Event again this year in October and starting this fall, I will be teaching three DJ classes at Scottsdale Community College.

What's the most important lesson you'll teach future DJs? That it doesn't happen overnight.

Anything else? Final lesson: Visualize the win.

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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.