A-Trak Encourages DJs to Be Creative and Open Minded


With the release of his new single “Believe” and upcoming Goldie Awards battle, A-Trak stopped by Shade 45’s Sway In The Morning to catch up and drop a turntablism-friendly mix.

During the convo, the Fool’s Gold boss explained that he created the Goldie Awards to push the art of DJing forward.

Scratching with current sounds:

“… I don’t want scratching to be an old school thing. I don’t want people to look at the way I DJ and be like ‘Oh you brought it back.’ To me, scratching always sounded futuristic. There’s subtle choices you can make as a DJ whether it be the sample that you actually scratch. We don’t have to still scratch on the ‘ahh’ and the ‘fresh’ from ‘change the beat’ and some James Brown shout. Music sounds more synthesized now so the samples that I scratch on, I’ve been choosing sounds that are more synthesized too.”

Adapting to modern DJ technology:

“A couple of years ago I started using the CDJs for those shows where maybe there’s strong winds and crazy vibrations or confetti being blasted on the stage. I remember just standing and thinking, ‘Why am I removing a confetti from the vinyl and the needle when I should just be performing for this crowd.’ And it just made me realize that I had to adapt to the evolution of equipment…”

Being creative and open-minded overall:

“I personally love turntables, and I hope turntables stay available to people for a very long time. But I also don’t want potentially, aspiring kids, people who want to become DJs, to think that they have to have a Technics 1200 to scratch. … Or even if it’s not literally scratching, [people should] learn how to come up with their own tricks. To me, it’s all about scratching and turntablism and just like the hip-hop approach to DJing that’s very subversive and taking equipment that was made to be used one way and using it another way. It’s always about that creativity and flipping what’s in front of you. … I wanna challenge the new generation to come up with new, original tricks on any kind of equipment because I don’t want [DJing] to be a legacy art form.”

Watch the full interview and mix below.

Related: Vekked Enters A-Trak’s Goldie Awards Battle