WMC 2010: Q&A with Burns
At 24, Burns has a DJ career most would be envious of. But his meteoric rise has been because of the hard work and dedication he's put into his craft -- and well, a shout out from the likes of Annie Mac, Mylo, and Calvin Harris doesn't hurt either. He'll be releasing the lastest installment in his EP series, Burns 4 "So Many Nights," in March, and a double-disc mix in April, featuring original tracks and remixes of songs by Ladyhawke, Jack Splash feat. Missy Elliot, Passion Pit, The Gossip, Kasabian, White Lies, FrankMusik, and Calvin Harris.
Crossfade caught up with the baby-faced DJ over the phone all the way from the UK, fresh off a US DJ tour with Calvin Harris, which brought him to LIV at the Fontainebleau in February.
New Times: You were in Miami not too long ago with Calvin Harris at LIV and before that with Deadmau5 at Mansion. How have your Miami experiences been so far?
Burns: Really good. All the US in general has been really good. The crowd reactions have been great -- more than I expected, really. The American crowd isn't as exposed to the underground stuff that we tend to play over [in the UK] as much we are. So you've a few fresh ears and opening people's eyes to new music.
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You've played at LIV and Mansion, which I sort of consider to be the Walt Disney Worlds of Miami's club land. People go there and know what to expect, but there is an underground music scene beyond that. Have you ever gotten a chance to play or visit those venues?
Well when I came out for WMC a couple years ago I played at this place called White Room.
Speaking of WMC, conference started as a way for musicians and
producers to network and get their music heard, but with the rise of the
internet and powerful music blogs, it doesn't seem as necessary as it
once was. Do you think WMC is still an important industry event?
Definitely, I think it's important for the artists themselves to have a
meeting place where they can go meet people who's records you play and
who you respect. It's a good place for the public too to see these
artists, and for the artists to do networking themselves. The internet
you can only go so far, but it's good to meet people face to face,
exchange ideas, and hang out with people who are like-minded.
How long have you been a DJ/producer?
I've been making music since I was 13 or 14, but professional since
2007. I'm quite young still, fresh.
Considering how young you are, and that people Calvin Harris and
Annie Mac have such great things to say about you, does it surprise you
how quickly you've been embraced by your peers?
Yea, definitely. I really couldn't have hope for much more that what's
happened. It's a pleasant surprise to have anyone in Annie Mac or
Calvin's position to say anything good about me is a plus. I've been
working at it before 2007 when I was working at home. I've put a lot
into, I hoped it would pay off in some sort of way.
You've released all these EP so far -- I think you are at Burns 4
now. Are there any plan for a full-length?
Yea, that was my plan from the beginning. The EPs are dancefloor
centered, while the album while have the same Burns sound but will have a
different feel to it. It's kind of more poppy, sort of crossover thing.
There are a lot of vocals on there. I hope people are pleasantly
surprised by the contrast, because it's not going to feature any of the
tracks off the EP. They are all going to be completely new.
Are the vocals by you or guests vocalists?
I've recording backing, but no, I'm not doing any lead or stuff like
that. There is this guy who I've worked with before that's on there. He
is a friend of mine that happens to be a quite a good singer. Hopefully,
he'll come out to the live show too once we tour for the album.
You've already remixed tracks for Passion Pit and Empire of the Sun.
Is there anybody out there you want to work with that you haven't
There are a lot of artists. I guess Kanye would be amazing to do. The
hip-hop stuff I haven't really gotten into. I really enjoy though
working with rap vocals.
Are there any plans to return to the US as a solo act?
Yea, there are putting together a DJ tour for me I think maybe in May or
June. Hopefully, I'll be out for a week or so. But I'm concentrating
really on the album which I'll tour for that maybe by the end of the
year, hopefully go the US as well.
Super You & Me with Laidback Luke, Calvin Harris, Dada Life, Afrojack, SonicC, Burns. Doors at 10 p.m., Wednesday, March 24. LIV at the Fontainebleau, 4441 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $70 in advance from wantickets.com; age 21 and up. 305-674-4680; livnightclub.com
Calvin Harris and Friends with Calvin Harris, Annie Mac, Burns, Prince Terrance, and more. Doors open at 10 p.m., Saturday, March 27. Louis at the Gansevoort South, 2325 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $30 in advance from wantickets.com; age 21 and up. 305-531-4600; louismiami.com
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