Miami — the city of beautiful people, perfect weather and EDM, of course. This tropical paradise is quickly becoming a new haven for electronic music, often being compared to the infamous Ibiza by many artists like Norman Doray and Quintino, to name a few. It’s no secret that everyone and their mothers are fighting for a spot as an established DJ – rocking crowds, traveling the world and partying harder than Charlie Sheen – before his public meltdown. But in such a closely niched city like Miami, only a few candles shine bright enough to shimmer over the masses. A few local underground talents have quickly made names for themselves in this fast growing community of music creators and manipulators. Some names that come to mind are mybeatFix’s Robert Tellier, Miami’s own Amari, and Cool Kid Roberto Cervantes.
We caught up with Roberto Cervantes after he took second place at Cebu’s Underground DJ Battle for an exclusive interview. Check out what he had to say about Miami, EDM, and how his own productions have evolved to claim a name of their own. You can also visit his website: www.djrobertocervantes.com
You’ve been spinning for quite some time now. How would you describe the recent uproar in Djing and how has it affected you?
Yeah, I have been spinning for about five years now. The uproar is incredible! DJs are the new rockstars! It’s affected me so much because now there is such a huge community for this, and with all the social media out there, I can reach out to people across the states and show them what I can do as a DJ and soon-to-be producer.
What’s your take on EDM? Where do you think it’s going, and what do you think you can add to it?
EDM without a doubt is growing fast. A huge example would be Ultra Music Festival. I have seen its numbers grow over the years. Last year was the first time they sold out the event, and this year they sold out way in advanced. Also many artists from different genres are working with EDM producers such as David Guetta, Tiësto and Laidback Luke. I’m just amazed at the fact that EDM has taken on the radio waves. But as for myself, I believe I can add something that will make people move a little more. My goal is to give the listeners goosebumps during my performances, whether it stems from my edits, or just my style of mixing.
Everyone has to have their own style – the ‘it’ factor that sets you apart from everyone else. What’s yours?
I think my “it” factor is that I’m constantly looking for things to work on. I have a ridiculous work ethic. I try to stay humble and always learn from people regardless of who they are, and I always keep in mind that there is room for improvement. A lot of other artists think it’s all about partying, and that’s their fault. If you don’t beat on your craft, some other guy will.
I have to say that I’m impressed with your regular delivery of edit packs, podcasts, etc. Where and when can fans checkout your work?
Thanks. Everything could be found on my new website, www.djrobertocervantes.com. Melissa Mejia, the manager of Team Cool Chicks, did an amazing job with it. She made the site real easy for anyone to access my info – soundcloud, facebook, twitter, and all that good stuff. The edit packs come out about every two to three months and a new episode of my podcast, Miami Mixin, gets released the first Saturday of every month with special guests.
You’ve been working a lot with Team CoolKids. How has that been working out for you?
Its been amazing. The amount of DJs you can find in Miami is incredible. Working with an agency such as Team CoolKids shows clubs and event promoters that I’m not the ordinary DJ from Miami, or just another kid with a laptop, which I don’t even use. Team CoolKids has helped me a lot. Bryan Herrera, CEO of TCK, has a great team and they help push what I release and set me up with events in clubs that I have always wanted to play at. Recently I played at Louis in the Gansevoort for the first time and that was one place I always had my eye on. Not only do they help with events and marketing but they also have a studio available that I can use to produce. In other words, working with Team Cool Kids has opened up a lot of doors for me, and I am really excited to continue to work with them.
What’s your most memorable performance to date?
It would have to be an event I did at Rokbar in Tallahassee back in September. The resident DJs there, Auzzy, Journey and DJ Abaum, were really cool and welcoming. The energy was intense and the place was slammed from wall to wall. It was my first time playing there and I can’t wait to play there again.
Favorite EDM artist?
It would have to be Tiësto. He was the first DJ I started really paying attention to back in 2004 and although his style of music has drastically changed, he is still my favorite, and I was fortunate enough to have been able to meet him.
Miami is quickly becoming the Ibiza of the U.S. in the sense that it’s a popular tropical paradise filled with electronic music bumping at every turn. What is it about this Miami culture that has accepted this crazy party lifestyle and how has it shaped you as an artist?
People in Miami love energy and love to party. So you mix those two and you end up with a demand for EDM. Also the fact that EDM consists of different variations in itself, such as house, minimal, trance and more, it’s easy for a city that loves to party to accept EDM in general. Its shaped me as an artist because I know that I can’t only fixate in one style of EDM — I have to be open and willing to play any kind.
Right now I am in a competition until Feb. 29 to win a spot at Ultra and I hope everyone can help out by voting for me. All you have to do is listen to the mix to vote. Making the mix a “favorite” and commenting with good feedback helps out a lot as well, and you can find the mix on my website and on my pages. Check it out below!