What’s the name of your show?
“My show is Original Pop Rocks. It’s a play on words. There’s the show Pop Rocks, famous on Sirius XM that plays pop music. But I wanted to call my show original pop rocks because I play music from the late 70s to early 80s time period. Which also happens to be the time when the candy pop rocks made its run in the country. Music from that time period is poppy, groovy, it’s got a big brass band, there’s kind of an Earth, Wind & Fire sound.”
How would you describe your show to someone who has never listened?
“I play a genre of music called Yacht Rock, album oriented rock, or adult oriented rock, west coast music; they’re all names for the same thing. Imagine disco, pop, and rock music from the late 70s and early 80s combined together. And I also play stuff from other countries, not just America, like Japan city pop. Some Scandinavian countries and Russia. It’s interesting because a lot of those countries all play similar sounds of music in the same time period.”
How do you decide which songs you’re going to play for each show?
“I spend a lot of time on YouTube or Spotify just listening to music that other DJ’s have found or people who are enthusiastic about the genre. Or I’ll try to find artists similar to the artists I already have on my show. But it comes with a lot of listening to different songs from albums that I’ve heard and then deciding which ones I like for the show.”
What are some influences for the music that you choose?
“Personally I just really like 70s music, I’ve always been into that sound. Last year during the pandemic I saw someone post their favorite album of the year on their story, and not a lot of music came out in 2020 so I checked it out. And it was this band called Young Gun Silver Fox who released the album Canyons. I really liked it, it had such a poppy flavourful sound to it. And through that, I discovered there’s a whole genre of music just like this, that came out in the late 70s early 80s. And as I’m finding music for my show, I’m exploring that myself and learning a lot about different artists and songs that I’ve never heard on the radio.”
How would you say that your music taste evolved over time?
“I first really started getting into music my sophomore year of high school, before then I would just listen to whatever played on the radio in the car. My dad listened to a lot of alternative stuff. My mom was a musician in the Soviet Union because she’s Russian, and she played in a rock band for a year. So I kind of had a draw to that side of Russian music. But in high school, I actually got into 70s music from the movie Guardians of the Galaxy. From there, that’s when I started diving into it more, it has a great playlist. I started getting into rock and hip-hop recently, like Lauryn Hill and MF Doom; J Cole and Nas too. But yeah I’m always looking to listen to new stuff.”
Are there any particular artists, songs, or albums you’ve been enjoying recently and that you’d like to recommend?
“I got to listen to a Latin retro pop album by this band called Tipa Tipo, they’re a Peruvian American band. It’s a husband and wife and they make really cool pop music with Spanish lyrics, I’ve been really enjoying them. A couple artists I like are Young Gun Silver Fox and there’s also a band called Mamas Gun from the UK. They make really soulful pop music. On the city pop side there’s a song called Love Trip by Takako Mamiya.”