TD: Plain and simple to get things rolling, can you tell us a little about yourselves (Name, age, where you’re from, etc) to familiarize the unknowing viewers out there?
— JC: My name is Jay Murphy, but those close to me know me as Jay or JC. I’ll be 21 in a couple months, and I’m from the South Jersey/Philadelphia area; although I moved all over the place growing up.
— RED: My name is Devon Marek, everybody calls me Red. I’m 20 years old and I grew up in South Jersey in the biggest little city on the east coast, Vineland.
— Uniique: Well, My name is Cherise, I just turned 22 and I’m from #Jersey..
TD: How did you guys all wind up joining forces to become ‘Westside Schmucks’?
— RED: JC and I met freshman year of highschool. He saw I was getting bullied and started shoving people in lockers for me. Since then we’ve been pretty tight!
— JC: Red and I met in high school and have always been tight since then, but Westside Schmucks came about 2 years ago when I approached him to start producing music with me. We got the name Westside Schmcks from watching the show “Curb Your Enthusiasm” while we were in West Philly at Red’s old spot.
TD: What sort of influences pushed you guys in the direction of producing the kind of music you do today?
— JC/RED: We both come from 2 completely different musical backgrounds, red with classical training, and me growing up around the dirty south hip-hop movement, into our teenage years listening to hardcore, progressive and pop punk bands. As far as club music goes, i have always had a love for it. With relatives and older friends of mine bumping hard trance and euro house in the early 2000’s, i started to fall in love with different electronic sounds.
— Uniique: I think my parent’s putting me in dance class at young age definitely influenced me. I was really into Dipset, Beyonce and Club Music but in dance we listened to classical music.
TD: This has become a pretty standard question of ours, what kind of equipment/software do you sit down with to produce in the studio? What about in a live show setting?
— RED: Honestly all we use is Ableton and some gnarly plug-ins like FM8, Massive, Predator, Albino, Surge, etc. For live we prefer Pioneer CDJ 2000’s and a DJM 800.
— JC: In the studio, our basic setup just consists of 2 rokit krk 5’s, monitors, a basic subwoofer, my laptop with ableton, a bunch of plugins and customized patches that we both made, and mostly just samples we find in places where others usually don’t think to look. We’re looking to buy more hardware (synthesizers, etc.). For live shows we’re running off serato and usually any industry standard setup (technics or pioneer cdjs & mixer), but we’re currently looking to take things a little further and convert to using only cds/usbs. Saves the hassle of changeovers and makes things a little more interesting!
TD: What are a few things you guys could be found biding your time with aside from churning out trunk dumpin’ club music?
— Uniique: Umm I’m either lurking the streets of New York 9 times out of 10 heading to turn up at a party, chilling with my friends, or doing other music related stuff.. I’m a workaholic. So it’s rare that I’m never not workin’.
— JC: If i’m not feeling inspired, I don’t try and force anything out. I’ve learned over time that it can be very ineffective and a waste of time. Instead of banging your head against your desk it’s better just to let ideas come to you naturally. It usually happens when i’m focused on something completely unrelated to music, random things like watching a hockey game, going out to eat somewhere, or talking on the phone. Besides music, you can find me trolling blogs, watching horror flicks with my girlfriend CJ Milli (who is also a DJ) ,hanging out in various hot spots in Philly, and as of lately, I’ve been playing a lot of challenging iphone games lol ,a healthy mind is key to creative a mind.
— RED: I teach guitar lessons at a little music shop on Landis Ave. in Vineland called Music Central. Honestly some of the greatest musicians I’ve ever heard have come out of this shop. The Teachers I have the privilege of working with have jammed with people such as Gene Krupa, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Philadelphia Jerry Ricks, Steve Vai, Victor Wooten, the list goes on. Soooo much talent can be found in this little shop.
TD: Last time you were in the studio?
— RED: Wednesday. Haha
— Uniique: Last Night
— JC: Right now.
TD: Last time you attended a show you didn’t play?
— RED: New Years Eve, saw a bunch of live Jam bands at the Troc in Philly.
— JC: Our good friend Drop The Lime just came through town with Nadastrom & Switch not too long ago, we always have a great time with that dude. Its always good to go hangout with friends at parties/events they play, gives you an opportunity to have some gets your mind off work and at the same time gives you time to observe the music scene from another perspective, it can be really refreshing!
— Uniique: It was the “All Girls Everything Tour” with Nina Sky, Kitty Pryde And Roxy Cottontail…. GIRL POWER!
TD: Last time eating something unusual?
— Uniique: I Ate Some Indian Food.. Idk What It Was Called But it Tasted Good .. Lol
— RED: I don’t know, I put mayonnaise on just about everything, so I’m sure somebody finds what I eat unusual. haha
— JC: Can’t really think off the top of my head, but i’ve always wanted to try alligator, heard nothing but good things about it.
TD: Last CD/vinyl you bought?
— JC: Man, I live in a digital world now lol so I honestly couldn’t tell you what it was, but I do remember that I was 16, and at the time I was listening to a lot Indie-Electronic weird Progressive shit, Hip-Hop and Hardcore.
— RED: Kendrick Lamar Good Kid Maad City. It better win album of the year!!
— Uniique: A$AP Rocky’s Album.. Money Well Spent..
TD: Last track you listened to?
— Uniique: Pink Dollaz – Double Mint Feat Sean Mack
— RED: Dead Long Time- Nguzunguzu remix of Massacooramaan
— JC: A track we are remixing for Freshmore. (Can’t give any spoilers away just yet)
TD: Last impressive music video you watched?
— JC: It was actually a compilation of different videos of dance competitions from the 90’s ballroom-house scene in NYC dubbed over with some of the biggest hits in the genre. I love watching music videos that feature cool dances & grooves that are looked upon as unusual to most, i feel like it reflects back to a lot of our track selections and what happens in the studio, i’d love to learn how to do some footwork or jersey dances someday lol, LEFT RIGHT LEFT!
— Uniique: XXYYXX – About You directed by VASH .. One Of My Favs
— RED: A$AP Rocky’s “Long Live A$AP” video. The track is gnarly and the music video is definitely dope!
TD: Thanks for taking the time to chat with us, any last words for those people out there on the other side?
— JC: I’d like to pass down advice to up and coming musicians that was given to us from a few people we look up to. Even though music is changing rapidly and different genres are becoming more popular, stay true to you and to your sound, let it grow with you with your experiences, you will find that a lot elements to your tracks will build naturally as time goes on. Another thing i’d suggest is not to release or send off tracks to people that you don’t feel 110% satisfied and confident with, be patient, be humble, take criticism from others as encouragement, exercise time management and don’t forget to be “human”. Looking forward to meeting all you internet peeps IRL this year!
— RED: Take pride in your craft, dedicate yourself, and don’t get discouraged!!
— Uniique: Be Your Own Role Model And Never Give Up !