Diplo Criticizes Major Labels, Offers Advice to Artists


“Never underestimate the power of your local community and building something small . . . if you aim for a hit or a smash right off the bat you’re always gonna be defeated . . . you have to always start at least locally in some form…”

Earlier this year, Diplo took part in a discussion panel during the RECESS Music & Ideas Festival at University of The Pacific in Stockton, California. The DJ/producer was joined by Twitter’s Head of Music, Bob Moczydlowsky, for a 50-minute conversation about the music industry and creative process.
When people praise Diplo, it’s almost always for being an innovative producer, top-notch showman or progressive tastemaker. The Mad Decent chief is also pretty savvy about the music industry though, and occasionally we’re lucky enough to hear him speak on the inner workings of the business.
We recommend watching the full discussion but here’s a breakdown of our favorite parts if you’re short on time:
– How Baauer’s “Harlem Shake” became a phenomenon (4:20)
– Building a local fan base and growing it into larger movement (15:00)
– How Diplo uses Twitter (20:00)
– The importance of developing a distinctive sound (22:50)
– Why the music industry is broken and how to fix it (28:30)
– How the Mad Decent Block Party got started (31:30)
– Diplo’s approach to working with artists (44:50)
– The increasing prevalence of superstar DJs (47:00)

Shout out to EDM.com for bringing this video to our attention.
Related: Diplo Discusses the Importance of Radio