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Dave Nada

March 18, 2008

Taxlo fixture DJ Dave Nada has been busy spreading his rowdy blend of Baltimore club and hip-hop far beyond the East Coast. Despite a gnarly cold, Nada was kind enough to check in with Noise during a lull between touring, to discuss recent shows in California and Canada, his upcoming releases, and whom he is stoked on seeing at the South By Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas.

City Paper: You went out to the West Coast first with Blaq Starr. Then you went up to Canada with Jokers of the Scene. Maybe we should start with the Blaq Starr tour. How did that go? What was your reception like out there?

Dave Nada: The Blaq Starr tour went really well. Basically, Mad Decent [Records] and Cullen [Stalin], who does Taxlo, had the idea of having me and Blaq Starr do the West Coast. It was the first time Blaq Starr has been out there, first time I have been out there, so they wanted to get us out there and kill it.

We only ended up doing two shows–San Francisco and L.A. It was cool considering it was our first time, and the crowds were really receptive. People in both cities were pretty much going crazy. A lot of people were really, really, really excited to see Blaq Starr actually perform and not just DJ.

I got to hang out with the guy and see how he is. See the artist he is even off the stage and out of the DJ booth. It was a good experience.

CP: From going there, I guess it was pretty mild–the weather.

DN: The weather was fine, up to [the] 60s. Unlike Canada, when I went up with Jokers.

CP: I was going to tie that in because, on your web site, you were saying [Canada] was having some record-setting blizzard.

DN: It was a great time, but we ended up having to cancel our Montreal show. Toronto was cool. Ottawa was cool. We did Kingston, and all three shows were rad. But the storms definitely had an impact, like in Toronto. It was that day that one of the blizzards had finished. It was still a good crowd, considering it was a Wednesday night in Toronto, in a storm.

We did Kingston, which is a good town, right between Toronto and Ottawa. It’s kind of a small college town. It ended up being really crazy. That was the least amount of weather problems. Me and Jokers went on and basically spun the majority of the night. It was really good turnout, really good reception. Kids were really into the Baltimore club and electro shit.

Ottawa was great. I did the monthly Disorganized [show], [the Jokers] have been doing it for years. Even through the stormy weather, it was a packed house.

CP: How did you hook up with Jokers of the Scene? Were you friends from before?

DN: We were fans of each other’s music and have mutual friends who are also DJs. A while ago I put them on to Cullen and Simon [Phoenix], to have them do Taxlo. But each time they came through Baltimore I was out of town. So we were finally able to get a chance to DJ together in Columbus, Ohio. It was Zen.

We had always maintained the relationship online, through music. Then, finally having to DJ together, it was a great time. Good chemistry. So, they were like, “We’ve been meaning to bring you up for Disorganized, so let’s organize a tour surrounding it.” I was really privileged to get down with those dudes.

CP: Did you notice any difference in reception between the West Coast and the East Coast? Or America and Canada?

DN: I would say Canada is a bit more progressive as far as the music goes. There’s a really strong interest for new music out there. I did notice in Canada that people were really, really receptive, more so than in the U.S.

CP: Did you notice any difference between the West Coast reception and what you get here on the East Coast?

DN: It was funny because San Francisco reminded me of playing at the Talking Head on a weekend night or a Monday night. It was a small spot, but it was packed. People were hanging off the ceiling, totally just going crazy for the music. I was really impressed. That was my only experience of the West Coast, but I would say they got down as strong as Baltimore on a good night.

CP: Is your 12-inch only going to be available at South by Southwest?

DN: I’m doing a show for Burlesque [of North America]. They are putting out a record to promote the night called Do It to It. It’s me, Cosmo Baker, Smalltown DJs, and Bird Peterson, a dope producer.

Initially [the record] was just going to be for promo for South by Southwest, but once the word got out there was a big demand for it. So now Turntable Lab is going to pick it up. It will be available shortly after the festival.

CP: What is on the 12-inch?

DN: It’s a mix that I did for “Crank That” by Soulja Boy. I did [it] with Federico Franchi.

CP: Is there anyone you want to see perform while you are down there?

DN: I’d like to catch Simian Mobile Disco; I think they are DJ’ing. I’d like to catch the Breeders [and] Million Dollar Mano, this producer out of Chicago who is really dope. DJs like Cosmo Baker and the Rub guys. I really look forward to seeing Switch again, too. Santogold, especially. She’s one of my favorites. Jokers of the Scene will be there. The Peer Pressure kids from Montreal. They’re really solid DJs. It’s going to be crazy, I can’t wait.

CP: Do you have anything coming up besides the 12-inch?

DN: I just finished doing a remix for this group called Time Machine, out of L.A. That’s going to have an official release fairly soon [on] the label Glow Like This. I’m working on an EP for T&A [Records]. Some other projects [like] production for Matt Nordstrom, out of D.C.

CP: What kind of stuff are you doing with Matt Nordstrom?

DN: With Matt Nordstrom it’s a little bit more on the electro-house tip. He comes from more of an electronic, ambient background, [and] combined with my [Baltimore] club background, we started working on a few tracks. They’re getting really good reception. It’s a lot of electronic, kind of crazy. We’ll probably have some stuff out from that later in the Spring.

CP: The EP that you are working on, do you mind talking a little bit about what that’s going to sound like?

DN: It’s going to be a follow-up EP on T&A. It will probably be five songs featuring Baltimore club. I am working on that right now. That should be out hopefully by the end of spring.

Tittsworth has a new album coming out. I have a remix on his album that’s going to feature all kinds of people like Kid Sister, Nina Sky, and Pase Rock.

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