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EDM Lounge Interviews 3LAU

Over the weekend at Wavefront Music Festival, Jack & I were able to steal some time with Justin Blau, better known as 3LAU after his killer set on Sunday before Crookers, Diplo, and Justice on the Wave Main Stage. At the young age of 22, 3LAU has been blowing up the scene within the past year and riding a wave of success driven by his monster mashups and bootlegs. Along the way he has been generous enough to help those in need and leave a more meaningful impact, something I consider refreshing in the business.

Before approaching the interview questions prepared, I had asked 3LAU about his performance the night before at Bssmnt with Carnage in San Diego, CA. His response was flawless.

Justin: I took a co2 tank with nothing attached to it and just opened it...
Sierra: You just opened it?! (laughter)

J: I opened it on like 8 naked girls dancing on the booth while Carnage was slamming it!

S: Wait, what kind of club was this?

J: It was called Bssmnt, so you could imagine, just brick walls. It was the turnest fucking shit. It was nuts. It was great.

S: That sounds interesting. I’m kinda upset that didn't happen here!

J: Umm, different vibes. Well, we're on a beach.

S: Do you prefer the club vibe then?

J: No, not at all. It's all about the crowd. Its about the crowd more than the atmosphere to me, honestly.


Now, the actual interview...


S: Your background in education is not that of a typical DJ - how do you think this has benefited you and your music?

J: In education? It's benefited the business side of things more than the music itself. I think my manager and I take the business side very seriously and that's a big reason why I've been successful. Just understanding how the industry works is the biggest barrier in this industry to be successful.

S: You've been very vocal in your support in the campaign to build schools for underprivileged kids, why do you think its so important to give back and support campaigns like this?

J: I think that dance music is really unique in the sense that it is all about community and all about togetherness and its so easy to utilize that movement that exists to build charitable projects and my partnership with Pencils of Promise is something that's very long term. We built our first school and we some insanely awesome ideas to do a lot more with them. So we’re really, really excited.

S: So did you always have this music vision first or was it this campaign...

J: Well I've always been involved in philanthropy and as my career started getting bigger I felt that I could do something different.

S: So use your success to help others!

J: Exactly! Because you know, I don't need that much. I have a car, I got a home, and I fly around everywhere so what else do I need? It’s so easy to help. Having even the remotely small influence that I have, we can still do a lot. I’m so excited to do more.

S: I know you always believed you would end up in music one way or another but did you ever imgaine your career would blow up the way it has?

J: I had no idea. I had no clue. And you know, that's the best part. 'Cause everyday is a new surprise with new shows and new things and my creative inspiration is constanly changing. It's the best! I feel very blessed to be able to do this.

S: Where do you see your career in music taking you?

J: I eventually really want to be more experimental. I'm kinda finding myself more in the mainstream, which is fine, but eventually I want to do more of what I feel opposed to more of what I think my fans want to hear. That's in the future.

S: "Escape" hit #3 on Beatport overall, how long did it take to produce with Paris & Simo and Bright Lights?

J: It took about 10 months. So happy we waited because we wanted to get it absolutely perfect. So happy about it right now. Tiesto is playing it;  Hardwell, W&W, Kaskade. It’s the best feeling in the world.

S: I've read some of your influencers are Sigur Ros, Steve Angello, Kaskade, Porter, M83 plus many more, how do they influence your sound and your overall music production?

J: My favorite sound is big sounds. I love epicness and really big chords. Big feeling. And all of those artists really mend themselves to that aura. I have a lot of respect for them and I really take a lot from them.

S: So how do you hope to influence inspiring DJs/producers?

J: I hope that I’m the proof that anybody can do it. Cause I did it. I was nobody and I just did it.

Escape - Out Now on Beatport!

By Sierra Rose

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