The Untitled Interview #124: Starring DJ Excel

As y'all know, I recently decamped to Los Angeles for a week of the three R's: Rest, Relaxation, and Room Service. Oh, and booze, though of course that doesn't start with an "r." I occasionally dragged myself away from the hotel (and the pool therein) to do some fun stuff with some fun people, however, and my next guest was a part of some of said fun.

Born in Philly and now based in LA, DJ Excel is what you might call a bonafide Man About Town. Or make that Towns, since the man is always on the move, hitting the decks all over the place on a singular mission to make people have a good time. Having seen him in action at Winston's somewhere in Hollywood, I can safely say the man knows what he's doing. We also happened to cross paths while pawing through the vinyl wonderland that is Amoeba, thus cementing our simpatico nature. If you're ever in the mood to shake what your Mother happened to bestow upon you, you probably couldn't find a better person to help you with that. Below, Excel muses on all sorts of pertinent topics, and picks the right answer to the most important question. Check it out, y'all.

Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?
Excel: Chillin' Back in LA. Getting some things situated for the upcoming gigs I have.

FL: What was the last song you listened to?
E: Hmm, last song I listened too...I listen to a lot of music everyday...last song I heard was in my car, Foster The People - "Pumped Up Kicks."

FL: Being a DJ is:
E: It's like chasing your dream girl around the world and sometimes getting lucky enough to spend the night with her and then she leaves and you lose her and have to start chasing all over again...

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to do what you do?
E: Not sure exactly, I was fascinated with records, music, and the sounds they made when you moved them back and forth.

FL: Beatles or Stones?
E: Someone else asked me this question, it's probably one of the toughest to answer. My answer changes every time because both of them are still til this day phenomenal. I'm going to go with the Rolling Stones for this one, because I've played several Stones songs this past week and I'm just on my Mick Jagger steez right now.

FL: Top 5 albums (of now, of this month, or of ever):
E: Another tough question that my answers change every time asked. In no particular order...

1. Nas - Illmatic
2. Hall & Oates - Rock & Soul pt 1.
3. Michael Jackson - Thriller
4. Daft Punk - Discovery
5. Slum Village - Fantastic Pt 2.

FL: Favorite music-related movie?
E: movie as in movie that was based around music? Or the movie that had the best music in it???? Music-related, I'd say Juice or The Show. Best Soundtrack or Scoring - Dirty Dancing or Boiler Room.

FL: Half full or half empty?
E: In this lifestyle, it better be half full cause otherwise I would have been quit.

FL: What’s the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?
E: Bagel...and coffee...everything else follows.

FL: Little-known Excel fact?
E: I can't sleep on my left side because I can feel my heart beating and it freaks me out.

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:
E: I can't speak for the world, but Amoeba is pretty good. Rue's (which is closed now) was pretty incredible too. Flea markets sometimes make for the best record stores too. One man's trash is another man's treasure.

FL: Shaken or stirred?
E: Even though stirred is the traditional way, I'm a James Bond head and he was the most cool so shaken. If it works for him, it'll work for me.

FL: What's your old reliable in terms of guaranteed crowd pleaser song?
E: Depending on the crowd, there's a few...

1. Michael Jackson - "Don't Stop Til You Get Enough"
2. Katrina & The Waves - "Walking On Sunshine"
3. Bell Biv Devoe - "Poison"
4. The Beatles - "Twist & Shout"
5. Rob Base - "It Takes Two"

FL: Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
E: "You get what you give."

FL: How do you know when you've played a really great show?
E: Blood, Sweat, Mayhem, Ambulances.

FL: If you weren’t a DJ you’d be:
E: Working in fashion, preferably for Ralph Lauren.

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?
E: James Brown w/Fred Wesley & The JB's.

FL: What's your favorite kind of event to spin at?
E: Basement party, preferably something illegally set up.

FL: Best song ever written?
E: I have to give you a few for this one too....

1. Labi Siffre - "My Song"
2. Ben Folds - "Brick"
3. Stevie Wonder - "My Cherie Amour"
4. Everything But The Girl - "Driving"
5. Oasis - "Champagne Supernova"
6. Rod Stewart - "Have I Told You Lately" (Written by Van Morrison)
7. Fleetwood Mac - "Dreams"
8. Gary Jules - "Mad World"

[photo courtesy Excel's official site]


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