Behind The Beat I Cash Cash Interview
Within the EDM scene it’s extremely rare to find individuals with as rich of a musical background as Cash Cash. Cash Cash burst onto the music scene in the 2008 as an “electro ” group. From the very beginning, they quickly amassed a large fan following putting on over 15 full US tours as well as a handful of overseas tours under their belt. They’ve produced, mixed, & mastered all their own music at their home studio since their start giving them a solid foundation. Over time, the group began to evolve becoming an EDM electro group and a force to reckoned within the EDM universe.
Once Cash Cash decided to immerse themselves in electronic music, they began producing a variety of official remixes and tracks that quickly rose in popularity, but it was perhaps their track “Michael Jackson” that demonstrated just how great this group is. Since the release of “Michael Jackson”, Cash Cash has gone on to sign with Big Beat records and has produced remixes and received support from major artists including Nicky Romero, Krewella and Hardwell. Recently, Cash Cash co-produced “Live for the Night” alongside Krewella, and they’ve been working extremely hard to release more new material in the near future. Cash Cash was nice enough to do an exclusive interview with OTB and allow all of us a little glimpse inside the world of Cash Cash. Check out what they had to say below.
OTB: Unlike the majority of DJ/Producers today, you have a very unique and special background. Can you describe your transition from being live “band performers” to successful EDM DJ’s/producers?
Cash Cash: When we first started as a band our sound was “poppy”, but we always had underlying electronic elements to our music. Once we started changing and growing as a group, our sound slowly began evolving into the electro sound we have now. We always produced, mixed & mastered all our own tracks so that made the transition really smooth for us. It also helped that we were doing remixes for other artists early on. Outside remixes are what really helped us step up our game production wise. We would always try new things and learn new tricks from doing them.
OTB: So having experience as both live musicians and DJ’s, which would you say is tougher and what is the biggest difference between the both of them?
Cash Cash: Both Djing and performing live as an electronic group have their own separate challenges. There’s way more prep that goes into one of our live shows. We have to be there hours in advance to do sound check, travel in a van or bus, set up keyboards, as well as hire a big crew to make the show happen smoothly. The biggest difference between the two is that a live show is based around us giving a performance to the audience as a source of entertainment. Djing a club is based more around the “nightlife” aspect of things. We become one with the people partying because we are there partying just as hard! haha The energy is more connected because it’s based on the goal of everyone just having a killer time vs performing on a stage with all eyes on us having to deliver a performance. That being said, it’s not any easier because the music we spin plays a crucial role in setting the right atmosphere and mood in a club which is always a challenge in itself. We love having a balance between the two. Doing a string of live shows with club dates in between is always amazing.
OTB: What was the breakthrough moment that made you feel like Ok, we’ve successfully transitioned to EDM?
Cash Cash: Linking up with Spinnin’ Records for our song “Michael Jackson” was definitely a breakthrough moment for us. They helped spread our music to different areas of Europe, which really helped introduce us to the community. With their help our video for “Michael Jackson” received over 2 million views in 6 months. Some other breakthrough moments we had were hearing Hardwell drop our Krewella “Alive” remix on the main stage at Ultra this year.
OTB: What seems to help artists breakthrough in this industry is their relationships with other artists and the support they receive from those artists. Who have you received support from and who in your life has influenced you and your music?
Cash Cash: We’ve been lucky to gain support from talented artists such as Nicky Romero, Hardwell, Krewella, Tiesto, Vicetone, Quintino, Dyro & Bingo Players. During Ultra Week we had a great time doing artist to artists’ interviews with Hardwell and Nicky Romero. We’re also are great friends with Krewella, who we recently worked with. We produced their new song “Live for the Night.” As for people who have influenced us, artists like Justice and Daft Punk really had an impact on us.
OTB: Before you mentioned Europe and the reaction/support you received there. So speaking of places where you have a great fan base and where you’ve performed, what are some of your favorite places to play? And being from the NYC area, what is your favorite venue in NYC?
Cash Cash: We’ve been lucky to tour amazing places like Brazil, Amsterdam, The UK, & Canada. One of the best places we played though was Japan. The response is always amazing over there. As far as NYC, one of our favorite places to play is Webster Hall. The Vibes and grittiness of that venue is so awesome. We hope to play some new places in NYC like Marque this year.
OTB: Most DJ/Producers are either solo acts or a duo collab, but you guys have kept together as a “group.” What is it like to be like that and how does it work?
Cash Cash: It’s great and it’s the best job we could ask for. Imagine the best job without bad co-workers or a prick boss to report to; it’s exactly like that. We know each other so well and have been together through thick and thin. We remember what it was like to sleep on hotel floors when we first started out which kept us close over the years. We also have a great dynamic. 3 completely different personalities that all work together to make the music we put out.
OTB: Recently many artists are talking about the “EDM Apocalypse” and explaining how EDM music is changing for the worse. How do you feel about this?
Cash Cash: I think there’s definitely a lot of bad shit out there now that EDM is becoming mainstream and every kid has a midi keyboard, computer, hacked version of logic, and a downloaded vengeance pack. But that being said, it doesn’t make it any harder for the cream to rise up. People can still smell shit when it’s in front of them. There’s some amazing producers out there that are raising the bar production wise. Guys like Oliver, Madeon, & Torro Torro are making music today that nobody in their right mind could have made 10 years ago. Knife Party and Skrillex do insane things with the sonic spectrum that electronic engineers 10 years ago could not achieve. The way we new school guys are compressing, eqing, maximizing our audio, and mastering is truly fine tuned sound design and not easy to do. It’s not easy at all and we new school producers pride ourselves on it.
I think anyone that claims EDM is changing for the worse most likely feels threatened by the competition and is scared they can’t keep up with the new kids in town.
This leads me to the new Daft Punk record. Here’s a great example of electronic dance music pioneers not trying to compete sonically with new school guys like Madeon or Zedd. Daft Punk makes amazing timeless dance music. It’s not always about how crazy or hyped a production is. There’s good and bad music and Daft Punk’s new album is a good fucking record. It might not be the hi fi fully sonic maximized banger electronic record certain people assumed Daft Punk would make in 2013 but it’s still an amazing album. My point is this… you don’t see Daft Punk going around saying the EDM scene is turning to shit because they might not be able to mix a record as fine tuned and maximized as new school 17 year old Madeon..I think we can all learn from Daft Punk in more ways than one.
OTB: So you have decided to sign Big Beat Records. What made you decide to sign with them and how is working out?
Cash Cash: Big Beat was the perfect fit for us. The whole label is filled with great vibes from the interns all the way up to Craig Kallman. We’re proud to be on the same roster as Skrillex, Martin Solveig, & Chromeo. There’s a lot of history at Big Beat. They also have a tremendous amount of resources and signing with them really took a lot of stress off our backs. We used to do our own artwork, design, promo, web stuff, etc and now Big Beat has taken a bunch of the load upon themselves so we can focus more on the music and being creative.
OTB: What is the best part of being Cash Cash?
Cash Cash: The best part of being Cash Cash is that we get to do what we love for a living. We get to travel the world playing music and meet so many amazing people in the process. We also don’t have to report to anyone. We’re our own bosses that do what we want, when we want to. Not for one second do we ever take that for granted.
OTB: Finally, what advice do you have for people that are trying to make it in this industry?
Cash Cash: I always tell upcoming producers and musicians to have a backup plan. Pursue your dreams but don’t let chasing them ruin your life. We have seen so many people try to make it in this industry that have been shattered and are stuck in life because they did not have anything to fall back on. So whether you decide to stay in school or have a job on the side, always make sure you have something to fall back on. Aside from that, give it your all when you’re going for it. Be original, be humble, and don’t think your shit don’t stank. Don’t be a hater. Learn from other musicians and people in the scene. Don’t just hate on other acts because you’re not happy with where you are and are jealous. That mentality will only keep you further away from success. We’re a good example that anything can happen. We were 3 suburban kids that made music in our bedrooms that were able break out and do it professionally. I always say, “Head in the clouds, feet on the ground.”
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