With the goal to keep making good music, and releasing them on the world’s best labels, Distort a.k.a Danish Qamar is here to stay and grow as an artist.
He already draws support from the likes of some of the best in the EDM scene, Blasterjaxx W&W, Apek, Kevu, Junkie Kid, and several others. His track, Moksha in collaboration with STARX, a Miami-based producer, was played by the legendary KSHMR at Ultra Music Festival – Mainstage.
We could grab a bite of his amazing persona during a GrooveNexus exclusive chatty interview session. Join us in knowing what possesses this musical prodigy from Kolkata, because “the future is now,” says Distort.
Q: An interesting name, DISTORT, what’s the story behind your name?
A. The story behind the name DISTORT will have to do with my visual background. I always tried to create a visual experience that would complement the music I play. So, when I was trying to come up with a stage name, the term ‘distortion’ kept striking my mind and it led to this name, DISTORT.
Q: When did you start DJ’ing? What were your early passions; or let’s rephrase, what did you aspire to be when young?
A. I started DJ’ing back in 2015. To be honest, when I was young, I wanted to become a pilot but when I started working as a visual artist, I developed this affinity towards creating music. That was it!
Q: What is about music or sound that drew you to it?
A. The energy that Dance Music brings to the floor drew me towards it. The question that how people could react to one kind of music in so many different ways and also relate to it, always created a degree of curiosity in me.
Q: Dharma, KSHMR’s label, released Moksha, your collab with STARX. Tell us something about this track, your inspiration behind it, and more.
A. The track Moksha is the birth child of an experiment; what I tried to do was mix the Indian elements of sounds with STARX’s Hardstyle, and it resulted in a banger track.
Q: What are currently your main challenges as a DJ? What is it about DJing, compared to, producing your own music, that makes it interesting for you?
A.The main challenge as a DJ, today, for me, is to stand out and create a whole different experience when it comes to live performances.
When I first came across the idea that through a DAW you can create music, I became quite interested in it. Moreover, creating music is like creating something which will live even when the creator dies. With it, comes immortality as an artist.
Q: What makes you decide to play a particular record during your sets? Is there a criterion behind the selection of what to play at a gig?
A. I usually start with a sick intro, then I try to use my own mashups and originals so that my set sounds exclusive to my audience. There are no criteria such to decide what to play and when.
Q: Most DJs are known for their unique styles. What is it about you that makes you different from other DJs?
A. I always try to create a creative audio-visual experience for my audience. In fact, I am, right now, working on an audio + visuals + light show for my live performance.
Q: What has been the greatest or the most memorable experience for you, so far?
A. Oh, it is something very recent.
I just had my 1st ever gig abroad in Bangkok, Thailand. And, the love and response I got from the audience there was amazing. I loved their energy; it was mind-boggling!
Q: If you could choose any artist (living or dead) to collaborate with, who would it be?
A. I would love to collaborate with Timmy Trumpet.
Q: Has the advancement in technology changed your style of DJing?
A. Advancement in technology has not changed my style, but it certainly has given me a lot of room to ideate and create more immersive and different musical content.
Q: What is the one track that never gets old for you no matter how many times you hear it?
A. Vicetone and Tony Igy’s – Astronomia
Q: One big-end, dream-come-true music festival is inviting you to set the stage ablaze. Which one would it be?
A. This one has to be Coachella.
Q: Ten years down the line where do you see yourself?
A. Representing my country on global mainstages as well as on the list of world top 100 DJs.
Q: Please recommend two upcoming DJs, of contemporary times, to our readers who, you feel, deserve their attention.
A. Karan Kanchan and Gurbax. Must listen to them.
Q: When not producing music, where can we find you?
A. Probably, chilling with my family and friends or maybe playing games.
Q: If not a DJ, what would have been your alternative career choice?
A. I really don’t know; maybe in some other creative field like graphic designing.
Q: Any thoughts that you’d like to pass on to your contemporaries or aspiring DJs?
A. Have a vision and keep working hard towards it.
We hope you enjoyed getting a notch closer to this blender of the best of both worlds just as we did.
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