This year’s Wanderlust, in our opinion, has the best musical line-up since 2011…remember that year? It was so good Wanderlust was almost not invited back? Bassnectar, Pretty Lights, Beats Antique, Brazilian Girls, Moby and Yard Dogs Road Show basically turned Squaw into a Phish-lot-turned-bass music festival….which is great or bad depending who you talked to. Understandably, after that year the music turned a little calmer and skewed towards a different demographic as the valley didn’t take kindly to immense bass rumbling the mountainside. This year, Wanderlust has curated a great line-up with two of the best turntablists and producers in the world indie hop hop/trip hop genre, RJD2 and DJ Krush, throwing in the musico-fused electronic experiment Big Gigantic, Thriftworks’ mindtwisting productions, the Polyphonic Spree’s euphoric choir, Bluetech’s beautiful downtempo creations, Manic Focus, Nahko and Medicine for the People and plenty more for any taste.
Whether you like music with your yoga or not, it’s apparent in many classes they go hand in hand. That feeling you get in a show when everyone is connected, vibing and dancing….it’s the same feeling you can feel in yoga classes. Everyone moving and breathing together creates that same connectedness you can feel on the dancefloor when it’s REALLY REALLY GOOD. And on top if it all…what better way to get ready your body and mind ready to play some music in front of a crowd then some yoga? In fact, a little yoga before any activity is a good idea.
We met RJD2 a few years ago….and that’s what he was doing. He was co-billing a show with The Glitch Mob and we saw him dropping into some yoga poses before his set. When he appeared on the line-up, it didn’t surprise us a bit. We’ve been following RJ’s music since the early part of the 2000’s. It’s one of the artists that is a constant in our repetoir (kind of like Ween for us).
RJD2 originally began his career in Columbus, Ohio, DJing in 1993 with a pair of turntables bought from a friend. He claims his name originates from another friend who referenced him as “rjd2” in his raps, and the name stuck. Besides being one of the best turntablists out there, his productions have placed him on numerous “Best of the Year” lists, he created the theme song for AMC’s Mad Men, a cover of Radiohead’s “Exit Music,” an entire album with acclaimed MC Aceyalone, to name a few. He released his most recent album, More Is Than Isn’t, last year (link below). A solid RJD2 album which crosses genres of disco/funk, indie hip hop, soul/r&b….basically this diversely great album can be your soundtrack to an urban and rural roadtrip or would be comfortable as Tarantino movie score. Definitely looking forward to hearing this material live…as RJD2 never disappoints live: Four turntables, two mixers and two samplers. This guy is an animal.
FB: It’s been awhile since you’ve been to our area…welcome back! I remember when you came here the first time you were wondering “Do people even know me here?” Turns out the show sold out at the Grand Sierra and a lot of people turned out for your set.
RJ: That was a great night.
FB: When we talked backstage we talked a bit about yoga and your practice. Did that play into your decision to do Wanderlust?
RJ: It was definitely a cool peripheral benefit of sorts-music is always going to be my focal point, but I’m excited to see what the whole scene is like out there!
FB: What is your yoga practice? What style(s) do you practice/prefer?
RJ: I’m actually not the most “schooled” practitioner; I basically have some moves that work for me that I have been taught, and I stick to them(when I’m being diligent. I definitely notice a difference in my daily well-being if I slack off. Being in airplanes and cars all the time doesn’t make your back too happy, you know? Maybe someday I’ll go full bore, but for now, I just do what I can.
FB: Yoga studio or at home?
FB: You had also just had a child then. Still have just the one? Has your kids/fatherhood changed anything about music for you?
RJ: Yup, still just the little guy at the moment. It’s changed EVERYTHING. What my records sound like, how often I do shows, the legacy I’m going to leave behind-it recalibrates everything in your life, quite literally.
FB: Will you be have your custom video show in Wanderlust?
RJ: Hmmm-depends on what my set time is, and the technical stuff, but I hope so! (FYI his set time is 10pm on Friday!)
FB: Anyone you’d like to work with in the future?
RJ: D’angelo would be pretty great. Action Bronson, Mastodon, Chance the Rapper, many others.
FB: Who, living or dead, would be your dream to work with?
RJ: Stevie Wonder, by far.
FB: What are your go-to studio snacks?
RJ: Dried apricots and almond butter, that combo never gets old, and is a great little protein blast.
You can catch RJD2 at Wanderlust in Squaw Valley July 17th-20th. RJD2 performs Friday night at 10pm with DJ Krush and Nahko and Medicine for the People. Tickets available http://wanderlustsquaw2014.sched.org/tickets.
ENTER TO WIN FREE TICKETS: http://bit.ly/wanderlust2014music
CLICK ON PHOTO TO LISTEN TO “MORE IS THAN ISN’T”