While many people who consider themselves EDM fans have to rely on what they hear on BPM, Soundcloud sets, and terrestrial radio stations, I take a deep breathe and reflect back (and sometimes take for granted) the countless DJs and sets of pure auditory delight I have had the luxury of enjoying while living in the Las Vegas market. Long before bottle prices were comparable to a BMW lease payment and general admission to walk in a club was comparable to a fine steak on your birthday, at the turn of the millennium, Vice was starting to materialize as one of the most prolific and sought after DJs in North America and the world.
Although he got his first set of mixing gear and started to dabble with his talents in middle school, the true beginning of his career was really a combo of radio station gigs in LA, most likely some house parties, and then joining the Tao Group family for the opening of Tao Restaurant and Nightclub in Las Vegas (and Tao Beach shortly thereafter) back in 2005 as a headlining resident. Nearly a decade later, Tao is still one of his many homes but now the world is his playground.
While floating in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, us “Captain” Rabbits got a rare chance to catch up with this exceptionally talented, globe trotter Vice on board the 2014 Groove Cruise LA and really got to get the skinny on his career, love and addiction of fashionable tennis shoes, and a solid appraisal of his humble appreciation of his fans.
Rabbits Black: Basically you’re a resident DJ of the world now, in a nut shell- where did it all begin?
Vice: Born and raised in Los Angeles, I got my first DJ setup in 8th grade. I haven’t stopped since then!
Rabbits Black: Tell us about your relationship with Tao Group, it’s been a long one!
Vice: I have worked with the TAO Group since they opened TAO Las Vegas in 2005. I prefer to work with companies that have a family feel and that’s what the TAO group is all about. I not only work at their venues I also hang with them outside of our work space.
Rabbits Black: As far as gigs go, can you recall where and when was that defining moment DJ set that you took it all in and realized you are a superstar DJ?
Vice: Ha ha, well I haven’t realized that “superstar” moment yet but I have felt many defining moments in my career. The first time I played live on the radio station I grew up listening to “Power 106 FM” at the age of 18 was a surreal moment.
Rabbits Black: What was your inspiration for your wildly successful single “The World is Our Playground”?
Vice: I love music and travel…put them together in a song and there it is! I want my music to take me to every part of this world….or space?
Rabbits Black: Any plans or collaborations for a fresh track we can anticipate in the coming months?
Vice: I finished a song with Estelle that I am super excited about! You can hear it in my live sets… no release date as of now.
Rabbits Black: Lets talk fashion; you are a bit of a tennis shoe junkie and trend setter. What influences played a role in your day-to-day style?
Vice: When I get dressed I start with planning my outfit around the shoes I am wearing.
Rabbits Black: What three shoes would you bring with you to a deserted island?
Vice: Nike Air Tech Challenge, Jordan 3 Black Cement, Nike Air Max 1 Atmos Cement.
Rabbits Black: You recently designed a DJ back pack for TUMI, complete with internal LED lighting and other features with the traveling DJ in mind. What was it like to go from designing the vibe of a party to designing your own bag for TUMI?
Vice: What an amazing experience that was! To sit with the head designer of TUMI and bring to life the most ideal DJ bag with the most foreword thinking travel product company.
Rabbits Black: Give us the low-down on your CRSVR boutique stores and can we expect more in the coming years in other markets?
Vice: CRSVR is about to celebrate 6 years in the retail game. Big things are always in the works… I want to go international!
Rabbits Black: Lets talk Groove Cruise. Have you played the Groove Cruise (or any cruise ship) before GCLAX?
Vice: First time ever playing on a cruise ship and what a way to get my feet wet! The Groove Cruise is really a family partying together. I now understand why people keep coming back year after year.
Rabbits Black: Why this is something you wanted to do now.
Vice: It’s really simple…I love traveling!
Rabbits Black: Have you ever been on a cruise before in general?
Vice: Once before… and it was miserable. I try to eat somewhat healthy and a cruise ship is not the place for that.
Rabbits Black: Tell us one thing you learned about the Groove Cruise after playing it for the first time this year.
Vice: There is always a party going on somewhere inside the ship 24/7. Early riser? Sure there is a party. Mid-day you feel like raging…they got you covered!
Rabbits Black: You played the second day and threw down an EPIC set that was less main stream, do you keep your festival sets separate from main stream club gigs?
Vice: My sets are never the same. I feel like everyone is a DJ when they listen to music whether its from blogs, Spotify, iTunes, You Tube or wherever you have your music stored… do we really listen to only one genre? I DON’T!
Rabbits Black: What was your drink of choice on the ship?
Vice: Vodka Water…so LA of me!
Rabbits Black: What can we expect from your post summer tour?
Vice: Follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter (@djvice) and see how my life is all over the place…just like my DJ sets. Loads of new music on the way as well!