Our Detroit contributor, Kelly “K-Fresh” Frazier, who recently interviewed electronic artist Matthew Dear had a chat with dubstep artist, 12th Planet. Born as John Dadzie and rooted in hip-hop and drum-n-bass, 12th Planet has now become one of the true ambassadors of the explosive dubstep genre in the United States.
Whether headlining his own tours or playing alongside heavyweights such as Skrillex, Skream, or Datsik, 12th Planet is constantly in motion and loving every minute of it. Recently, one small seed was able to catch up with 12th Planet, who was backstage set up with his mini studio working on a remix for Porter Robinson, during the Detroit stop of his The End is Near North American tour to talk about what else, dubstep.
It seems like, when it comes down to it, a lot of the dubstep artists that are enjoying success right now have a bit of communal respect for one another. Speak more about the importance of that.
Imagine being a part of workforce or going to work everyday and hating everyone at your job and especially your boss. Except, it’s like going to work, and there are no bosses, but it’s like everyone’s homies. Like some people have different salaries than other people, but at the end of the day, it’s all love and it’s a good time. When you are on the road all the time, you run into similar people constantly so you might as well be good with them because you damn sure know you are going to see them again.
You are one of the original ambassadors of American dubstep. How did you get into making this sort of music?
I started out producing and DJing drum-n-bass. I heard the music out in England and I was like ‘Yo, what is this? It’s like slow drum-n-bass’. I came back and was put onto this dubstep stuff. I heard this BBC show, Mary Anne Hobbs. She did the Dubstep Warz radio set with like Burial, Skream, Benga, and DMZ. All these guys I got to put a face to the name and a name to the music. I went to the DMZ three-year anniversary over in England and that shit was nuts. It changed my life. I had never seen so many nationalities in one place reppin’ this underground music.
Do you think the mass growth of dubstep in the states will give a jolt to the other forms of electronic dance music?
I’m not sure, because dubstep was always the third or fourth option room at a party. Before that, it was drum-n-bass, and before that, it was hardcore. That’s where it gets most of it’s appeal is that the majority of the people that listen to it are kind of like ‘us against the world’ mentality and ‘strength in numbers’.
That’s why dubstep is come as you are. Just come to party. It doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, black, white, Mexican, Asian. It’s just all about good vibes and good times no matter how you dress.
I’ve read that Skream is one of your main influences and he remixed Control for you. How was it to connect with such a talented artist?
It was one of my first releases and we signed it to the Juan BassHead’s label down in Miami and he was really good friends with Skream. At the time, Skream was like my idol. Skream was like ‘I like the track and I want to remix it’.
I was like FUCK, are you kidding me? It made my fuckin’ 2-3 years!
It made my career really because from there, a lot more UK people started paying attention to my stuff.
words: Kelly “K-Fresh” Frazier
images: 12th Planet