Dan Sena: Exclusive Interview & Mixtape

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Our friend Dan Sena is no stranger to music; having originally focused his career on hardcore bands and the like, Dan has now etched his mark into the electronic scene. That mark, aided by Dan’s immense drive & passion, continues to grow and root its way deeper and deeper, so it comes as no surprise that 2011 has been a wild and eventful year for the Orange County beat maker. I’ve had the great pleasure of becoming friends with Dan, I don’t even remember where it was we met but the friendship clicked pretty fast & it’s been a real pleasure to witness his growth.

dan sena crowd surf

photo by: Topher Riley

Just about a month ago, Dan had his first music video released side by side with a fresh EP (entitled “Candy Floss Art Capitalist” & released on Dim Mak, available on Beatport here) which was, and still is, a huge hit. The track, “Song Of Siren”, features vocals from Hip Hop legend Del Tha Funkee Homosapien, as well as Kylee Swenson. The music video has garnered a lot of hype and continues to gain attention from various angles. It’s a haunting watch & left me with goosebumps after I watched it, definitely worth a view (or a few) if you haven’t already.

If you’re a fan of Dan you’ve probably noticed his lack of mixtapes… well we’re about to change that. We have an exclusive on the first mixtape Dan’s put out officially in over three years, woo hoo! And to top that all off, we’ve got a nice little interview with him as well. So read away, my friends, and plug your earphones in and enjoy the ride…

First question, how are you buddy? What’s fresh on the plate of life for Dan Sena?

Well my EP dropped late July on Dim Mak Records along with a music video for Song Of Siren which was truly exciting. I have a single with my friend Penny called Poison The Air coming out on Reid Speed’s label Play Me shortly.

When did you start producing? Was there a particular moment/artist/track that influenced your decision to create the Dan Sena sound?

I’ve been writing music ever since I was a teenager with various hardcore and indie rock bands. I transitioned into the electronic world a few years back out of necessity really. After more than a decade playing in bands without any breaks in between, I needed a change. I was completely burnt out working with other people, and music for that matter, until I realized I didn’t really need to rely on anyone else to make music.

You’ve gotten an amazing amount of positive feedback on your track & video with Del. What’s next for you? Any forthcoming EPs or remixes we can look forward to?

Well as mentioned before I have my new single Poison The Air coming out soon. I’d like to work on a [full length] album for Dim Mak next. I’m just working and seeing how everything develops really. I’m a bit more cautious with my output now, as a result of past experiences with the music industry. My goal is to help advance music, not add to the noise. I pace myself now and put time into my ideas, as opposed to just regurgitating material for the sake of staying competitive.

It’s been an interesting year for you dude, with loads of activity… 2012 is looking to be even cooler. Any particular moments from 2011 that shine brightly in your memory?

Yeah I’m really looking forward to doing as much touring as possible. I’m by no means a homebody. I’d like to be able to play every part of the world that’s reachable. So I’m hoping the end of 2011 and 2012 will be full of touring. I think the collaboration with Del has definitely been the pinnacle so far of my musical career. Del is a hip hop icon and it was a huge honor for me to have him on a track.

If anyone could remix a Dan Sena original, who would you have it be?

Well naturally my friends, of course. If Skrillex’s schedule ever loosens up to squeeze in a remix or even a collab, that would be really fun. I find it easier to connect with musicians/producers when you’re already on a personal level with them. Maybe if I could befriend someone like Trentemoller, I think there would be some interesting results.

Which artist(s) have been the most influential to you, as both a producer and a DJ?

Well I hold Steve Aoki completely accountable for encouraging me to DJ. If it wasn’t for him, I would probably still be struggling in some band and miserable as ever. He really got me to see music in a different light. He’s also the oldest friend I have.

Obviously you’re not producing under any sort of pseudonym… but if you were to have one, what would it be?

I’m not sure really. I really wanted to brand my name as a producer, regardless of genre. I think if it was a musical endeavor between friends, then naturally that would call for a title. But who knows, maybe I’ll stumble on a cool direction and want to categorize it as something different.

Favorite non-electronic songs/albums at the moment?

I totally blow it on this one. I haven’t been keeping up on bands as I should. But I’m really looking forward to the new M83 record. The last one was shoegaze heaven for me.

Any studio or pre/post set rituals?

Eh, I’m not superstitious.

Dream festival or club to play at/in is?

Um……COACHELLA!!! (I’m available Goldenvoice. hint hint). Favorite dream club goes to Voyeur. No contest there.

dan sena crowd surf“I didn’t want to just smash a bunch of tracks together and label it a mixtape, without any regard to where it needs to take the listener. I wanted this to be more of a look into how I interpret music on a personal level.” – Dan Sena

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Click to Download “Dan Sena – Mix For Media Contender”
(Stream & Download Courtesy of Media Contender)

TRACKLIST

1. FROM MONUMENT TO MASSES – DEAFENING
2. ROB ROY – ROLLERCOASTER BABY (MUFFLER REMIX)
3.TROWA – WHATS THE PROBLEM
4. BAD BRAINS – I AND I SURVIVE
5. ORIGIN UNKNOWN – VALLEY OF THE SHADOWS (DFRNT REMIX)
6. DAN SENA – POISON THE AIR FEAT. PENNY
7. DJ FEI FEI FEAT MOLLY JENSON – THIS IS OUR NIGHT (PROPER VILLAINS REMIX)
8. VITALIC – LA ROCK 01
9. DEADMAU5 – RAISE YOUR WEAPON (NOISIA REMIX)
10. GRAND PUBA – GET IT (12TH PLANET REMIX)
11. BJORK – HYPERBALLAD
12. SKRILLEX – SCARY MONSTERS AND NICE SPRITES
13. UNDERWORLD – BORN SLIPPY
14. SKRILLEX – SCARY MONSTERS AND NICE SPRITES (PHONAT REMIX)
15. FS AND REID SPEED – BASS MONSTER
16. DAN SENA – SONG OF SIREN FEAT. DEL THE FUNKY HOMOSAPIEN AND KYLEE SWENSON

 

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