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Artist Series: Prints (Part II)

Posted by Mark Shreve on Aug 2, 2013 9:08:50 AM

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Last week we introduced our guest blogger Sierra and the first part of her profile & interview with NYC-based mix artist Prints. This week we're continuing the second half of the interview. Same as last week, be sure to follow Sierra on twitter (@sierraferrier) and check out her facebook page. Also, don't forget that you can listen check out Prints' work on his Soundcloud, or get in touch with him on his Facebook page. Follow @iamprints to find out where’s he’s playing today.

How long have you been mixing music?

Mixing for a month, working on sampling, but with the materials that I have now I can’t really hear what I’m doing before it plays.

Prior to this I have been making new beats.

What equipment are you using?

Most sets are a little different. Multiple apps on iphone and ipad, then another that mixes all of those. Fridays and Saturdays DJing. Chord and sampling. Native instruments—traktor DJ, iMaschine.

Would you say your learning curve is normal?

For me personally, I’m spending 6-7 hours per day, so once you really get involved with the features, I find new things about that most people don’t stumble on.

What do you sample? What do you like to sample?

I wear two hats—I am in love with electronic music, …trap, dubstep (but real dubstep though), I really like classic rap artists. Having festivals such as Electric Zoo near me has given me a chance to see top electronic music. And then there’s the other side of me that grew up listening to hip hop. So there’s that one side of me that loves to cut hip hop vocals. I keep about 10-15 splices on hand to use at any time. So I do love simple, really thoughtful music.

Do you have specific artists that you’re drawn inspiration from?

I’d say there are a few that have always kind of come up. Gold Panda for one, the other being Mount Kimbie. Jamie XX is the overlord of all to me. He is so talented, and brings a new level of live interpretation to his music. I actually saw The XX a few weeks ago, and saw how he added this layer of dance into the set.

What influenced you to learn how to mix, sample, and then start taking that to the streets?

I’ve performed in the city all my life on djembe drum.

I love playing the djembe, put I can’t play it for hours, and I needed something that I could play alone that was more dynamic than someone playing a drum alone. It’s not like I can show up Sunday morning and beat the living daylights out of a drum. Now I can wake up on a Sunday, and play remixes of Etta James, something that fits the mood a little better.

Have you played any other instruments?

Just percussion. I would go find drum circles in Harlem to practice and play. Then I finally got it.

But going towards mainstream messages…

Here’s a comparison. The two things that I really want to be able to do: hear what I’m playing to their personal devices and experience music being given to them.

Also, I really value how an artist performs live, with The XX .

You have to really follow people to make a sound judgment to see how they interpret the music that they play, recorded or live.

People don’t get to see music put together and see how interesting it is.

The coolest things, people will come up to me totally excited.

Future plans?

Working on producing beats full time.

Before I played in the subway, I didn’t practice having friends and maintaining relationships. I’ve met so many people from performing and having more friends. Now I’m exploring the people around me. That’s my biggest goal. Enjoying the community of people who are enjoying what I am playing.

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