Sunday, December 07, 2008

DJ Riko

DJ Riko

DJ Riko is a Californian mashup artist, with more than just a healthy interest in Christmas, which I only mention as it's December and I don't have a Christmas mix planned for this year. DJ Riko, on the other hand, has at least a couple at his website HERE.

He's known for his single, "Whistler's Delight," which has enjoyed not one, but two re-pressings in the UK, not to mention a host of placement on radio playlists worldwide, including here at Some Assembly Required. You can download that and many more of his mashups at his official website, along with longer mixes composed for The Bootie To Go Podcast, Solid Steel Radio, and XFM (both The Remix and The Rinse). Check it out!

Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with DJ Riko...

*Name: DJ Riko

*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: Not really.

*Do you use a pseudonym? Yes. About 12 years ago, some friends were organizing a show with a bunch of bands and asked if I'd DJ between bands. They wanted me to give a DJ name for the flier and I didn't have one. I'd just left a gig writing for an alternative weekly to take a corporate job that paid a lot more, so I thought it would be funny to embrace my being a sellout and use "rico" which is Spanish for "rich." But I spelled it with a "k" because my real name is Erik. If I'd known the name would be used more than once, I might have tried to come up with something better.

*Members: It's just me, though I have worked with a few vocalists, including Gerald A., Marcie, and Katie Enlow.

*Founding Members: Just me.

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: Digital deconstructions would be closest, as I make mashups using software. I do a little bit of turntable work as well, but almost all of the productions available on my Web site were made with software.

*Another genre descriptor: Bootlegs, mashups, cutups, re-edits, whistledelia and mishaps.

*Why you use this descriptor: Whistledelia is what I called the genre for "Whistler's Delight," which features samples from dozens of songs that feature whistling in them. It was released on vinyl in the U.K. and played on the BBC among other radio stations.

*Location: I live in San Diego.

*Original Location: Columbus, Ohio.

*What is your creative/artistic background: My father is a professional musician and bandleader, so there was always a lot of music around the house as well as a lot of instruments to fool around with.

*History: When I was in junior high I had a tape deck with a very precise pause button. I used that to make re-edits of songs like Asia's "Heat of the Moment." The first production I ever shared with a larger audience was "No One Can Match Me," which sampled Mike Tyson's comments about wanting to eat Lennox Lewis's children. I made that about 10 years ago using a Roland SP808 Groovesampler and it took forever.

*Born: I was born in Columbus, Ohio.

*Motivations: I started out making sample-based collages strictly for my own amusement. It's fun to put things together that don't make sense on paper but end up working pretty well. Like combining Malcolm McLaren with Simon & Garfunkel. When I put some of my mixes on the Internet and got very nice feedback from people around the world, that motivated me to do more.

*Philosophy: I try to make things that are clever, unusual, offbeat and/or fun, and sometimes you can dance to them.

*How would you like to be remembered: Vaguely

*Web address:

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