In Denver, we have something that we look forward to all year. Once the snow melts and the warm weather starts to show its face, music fans from all genres get excited for what we know as Red Rocks Season. The historical Red Rocks is home to some of the best EDM events in Colorado and its one venue that you have to put on your bucket list. And if you hear that Ookay is going to be performing at this venue, you’re guaranteed an amazing show.
If you haven’t been to an Ookay show before, I should warn you that this isn’t the type of show where you will be sitting in your seat. No bathroom breaks, no refilling the water bottle, no going to find your friends. The minute Ookay hits the stage you are instantly redeeming your ticket for a non-stop journey of energy, excitement and pure talent. It always shows when a DJ loves what he does and it’s easy to see that in Ookay.
After dancing around with him and watching him hype up the crowd as the sun went down and the stars came out, EPIC had a chance to catch up with Ookay to check in to see how his year has been so far and of course, what new pizza is on his radar:
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: How has your year been treating you so far?
Pretty wild! This year I gotten to work on a lot of new music and I’m pretty happy about that. I’ve been able to work on some new collabs as well. I’m working on one with A-Trak and another with Retrohandz. A lot of new singles, it’s really exciting! Just original stripped down “Ookay music” the real trap shit. Back to the roots.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What style is your song with A-Trak?
It’s like Twerk and Moombahton. A little bit of both. But ya know its in its early stages right now. It’s playable, but early stages. It just depends on where were going to go with it. We barely have time, either of us…So we’re just trying to figure it out. But yeah, I’m definitely looking forward to that one.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: How many more stops do you have on your tour?
Well the tour never ends so I mean tomorrow were doing a secret show somewhere, can’t say where but we’re doing that. Getting ready for the festival season! Tomorrowland, EDC Vegas, all sorts of crazy stuff happening. Just mainly getting new music ready for the festival season that’s what I’m working on right now.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you prefer the festival or the club scene?
I like them both, clubs are always super intimate but you can reach a broader audience at the big festivals obviously. There are pros and cons for everything, ya know? So it depends, it just depends.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Who’s been the most fun to tour with?
Um…Oh man, Snails is definitely up there. Dotcom is an awesome dude, Um, Jose, ETC!ETC!, always good times with him. I guess those would be my choices.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Which software do you use to produce?
I use FL Studios. Loud and Proud, since the beginning.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What approach do you use when you start making a new song?
It’s just the stuff I think in my head. I beat box a lot, not in public or anything, but like to myself. So all the noises I make like in my head or in my mouth I try to like translate them into an actual song. Like synths I have in my head I try and make them as close as possible. It’s pretty cool, ya know it just depends. Depends on my mood, the vibe, even what it looks like outside.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What are some of your favorite plugins you use often?
I use a lot of Nexus, Sylenth and Massive is pretty cool. I’ve been using Serum too. Serum’s pretty cool.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: It’s good for glitch effects right?
Yeah it is but I actually use Blue Glitch for the glitchy shit. And yeah that’s pretty much what I use along with the in house FL Studio plugins.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Nexus, Sylenth and Massive seem to be the three staples that most producers use.
Yeah for sure. They’re the ones that almost every producer has.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: So we’ve heard about your other identities as Coaster and Leisure. Have you played shows under those names?
Yeah I used to as Leisure a long time ago. I actually switched over from Leisure to Ookay permanently. And then Coaster, I’ve done a couple shows and obviously I’ve done shows as Ookay. But yeah, with Coaster I’ve only done three shows. San Diego, LA and Miami.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Coaster is more of the kinda chill trap right?
Yeah chill trap, house music, all that kinda stuff. More on the mellow side.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Which is your favorite identity to play as? Do you have one?
I think probably Ookay. I just like being super energetic on stage. Just act crazy and shit. It’s about being wild and connecting with the crowd. I have a blast!
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Who are some new artists your following these days?
Um, new people? I guess Retrohandz. There’s a lot of good up and coming producers.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: How about Snails?
Well yeah. I knew about Snails before he was Snails. Before he even had Snails as a name. So like, I’ve seen that guy grow and he’s killin it! I’m really proud of him. He’s actually one of the people I’m just so happy for.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Have you ever toured with him?
I’ve played a couple shows with him here and there but never like a stop-after-stop tour with him.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What other artists are you hoping to collaborate with this year?
I’m talking to Valentino right now, Valentino Kahn. Um, I want to finish this one with A-Trak. I’ll see what the Yellow Claw guys are up to later. Um, I dunno probably Hardwell.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: So what’s up with you and Hardwell these days? Still blocked on his Twitter?
Yeah but I keep sending him Snapchats, he doesn’t reply but he opens them at least. So I got that going for me.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: So what other shows are you most looking forward to this year?
Tomorrowland is definitely gonna be a staple for me out in Belgium, I’m gonna be freaking out! Excited for that and EDC Vegas is going to be really awesome too. First time playing that. Ile Soniq in Montreal is gonna be cool. Actually going to be playing with Snails! Haha so that’s going to be a good time.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Nice! Maybe a possible Vomit-Trap collab in the upcoming future?
Haha I dunno, but I’d love to. That’d be great! We’ve done one before, me and Snails, but its old as shit. It was before Snails even had his sound yet.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: How long have you been producing?
Um, about 4 or 5 years now.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Have you been using FL Studio the whole time?
Yup, since the beginning! Everyday man, in the studios trying my best.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What do you think about FL studio 12?
I actually haven’t used it yet! I haven’t even seen it. I need to Google it later and study it.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: You need to get it! They basically took every annoying this from FL studio 11 and fixed it, making it smoother, cleaner and faster!
That’s dope! Shout out to FL Studios by the way.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What’s the best pizza you’ve had this past month?
There’s this place in LA called Olio, and it’s like really good brick oven baked pizza. And they use like really fresh ingredients so its super healthy pizza. That place, and Blaze Pizza in Hollywood. Blaze Pizza is like my Go-To for pizza when I like really need it then and there.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: If I can make a recommendation next time you’re in Denver, check out MOD Pizza. You pay for your crust and then you can get as many different toppings as you want and they’re all really fresh and delicious.
Damn! That’s Lit! I’m definitely gonna check that out. Shout out to MOD Pizza!
After the interview I had a chance to hang out a bit for Ookay and it was easy to see how much he loves his job. Of course, the amount of fans screaming and cheering his name, while dancing along with him while he is on stage will give credit to that statement. If your festival season includes EDC Las Vegas within the next month, head over to his set and get ready for an amazing show.
AUTHOR CREDIT: SHANNON BALMES PHOTO CREDIT: RANDALL EYRE