|By Jocelle Koh|
A couple of years ago, I chanced upon aspiring DJ and Producer Eugene Luu, who was just starting to make a name for himself by fusing Chinese Pop with EDM music. After reconnecting with him, it’s nice to see that he’s done well for himself, rising up the ranks to become an international DJ who has played events all over the world including his native San Jose, as well as music festivals in China and Malaysia. It is even more heartening to see that he has continued to fuse EDM with Chinese Pop in ways that others rarely attempt, creating sleek remixes that are relatable and showcase his Chinese heritage. We chatted with the DJ/Producer to find out a little more about his music, and about what he’s been up to these past few years.
1.Since we last talked, you’ve become an international DJ/Producer! Can you tell us about some of the opportunities you’ve had which allowed you to come this far?
Its all about the connections and what makes you stand out. I made my international debut in June at one of Malaysia’s top nightclub and was invited by Asia’s No. 1 DJ Jamaster A to perform at the 2015 Bougainvillea Music Festival.
2. Your music seems to consist of a fusion of EDM and Chinese pop music. What initially led you to focus on Chinese music as a starting point?
I grew up listening to Chinese music and I hold a strong appreciation for it. From the most traditional to pop, I have always had a strong background. I’ve failed numerous times when I began making music domestically and from there, I realized that by infusing what I loved with what is appealing can greatly innovate and revolutionize Chinese music.
3. What kinds of responses have you had from listeners of your style?
I would say mixed, primarily more positive reactions outweighing the negatives. My fan base grew consistently, something that never happened before I focused on Chinese EDM.
4.It’s great to see you attempting to bridge cultural gaps with your music.You mainly perform around Asia at the moment, do you have any plans to bring your Chinese pop-infused EDM style to Western settings?
I perform here in San Francisco and sometimes my hometown San Jose. I am affiliated with Soul Krush Entertainment, a nightlife organizer catering to Asian-Americans in the Bay Area. In my sets here, depending on the crowd, I only play one or two tracks that are Chinese-infused EDM.
5. You’ve travelled to many places and collaborated with quite a few known DJs and artists, such as Taiwanese rapper Dwagie. How did you get to meet him, and what was it like working with him?
Haha, for the record I actually did not collaborate with him however, we did have some talks regarding that matter. He made his Bay Area debut at Pure Lounge, a reputable club in Sunnyvale and I was invited by the organizer to perform with him. I personally did not hang out with him enough to determine how he is but from what I have observed when talking to him, he was a very chill person.
6.If you had the chance, who would you like to collaborate with most?
Andy Lau. All my life he was my idol. Before I was a DJ and producer, I used to participate in Chinese Club talent shows in my High School, imitating his voice. His fashion and hairstyle was also a great influence. My dream is to take a picture with him and what makes my dream even bigger is if I can collaborate with him.
7. Who would you describe (if any) as your inspiration to continue making music the way you do?
I would say Avicii. Yes I know what most people think: He is too mainstream or not the same anymore. He as well, infused other elements such as folk with EDM and although has mixed reactions, he shows how important it is to do something out of the ordinary.
8. What do you consider your greatest achievement in your career?
My greatest achievement in my career is getting featured on MTV China when I was performing in Shenzhen.
9. Any upcoming projects you’d like to share about?
I am working on a few original Chinese EDM tracks along with some talented Chinese vocalists. It is not yet released but audiences in China were lucky to hear it when I played it at the Shenzhen music festival.
10. Lastly, what advice do you have for any aspiring DJs/Producers out there?
Be different. There is so much competition today because thousands of people are trying to be aspiring DJ’s and producers. When you infuse something that you love with what you are making, then you can find your crowd. It’s going to be hard but the mistakes will route you to the right destination. That’s what happened to me in 2013, I lost an EDC Chicago remix competition and went on hiatus for a few months out of lost hope and frustration, then I came back and decided to represent my native roots and here I am today.
To find out more about Eugene, check out his official Facebook, YouTube, EDM Wiki, or Soundcloud. Eugene will be performing with Taiwanese DJ Alyshia on the 3/12/16 at the Origin Nightclub in San Francisco. If you’re around the area, don’t forget to check him out!